By Dan Ambrose: Tim Bradley didn’t like what he saw of Gennadiy Golovkin last Saturday night in his ninth-round knockout victory over Ryota Murata in their IBF & WBA middleweight unification match in Saitama, Japan.
To be sure, Golovkin looked slow & lethargic in the first four rounds against WBA 160-lb champion Murata (16-3, 13 KOs), getting hurt to the body in the third round, and being frequently backed up.
You’ve got to give Golovkin credit for coming on strong after he got warmed up in the sixth, hurting Ryota with a right hook to the head, and battering him all over the ring in the ninth round before stopping him.
Nevertheless, as far as Bradley is concerned, the 40-year-old IBF 160-lb champion Golovkin (42-1-1, 37 KOs) “Looked terrible”, and is going to lose to Canelo Alvarez, likely by a knockout, when or if they fight on September 17th.
Bradley isn’t sure that Canelo will get past his new opponent WBA light heavyweight champion Dmitry Bivol on May 7th, though, so there’s an excellent chance that Golovkin won’t his long-awaited opportunity to fight the Mexican star again.
For some boxing fans, they’ll be glad if Golovkin doesn’t get the third fight with Canelo because they’re in the same boat as Bradley, believing that the Kazahstan fighter will be easy pickings for the 31-year-old Mexican superstar.
Canelo choosing to wait four years after his last fight with Golovkin to finally agree to face him now that he’s 40, looks to some fans like a move that he purposefully made to increase his chances of victory.
“He’s going to mop up Golovkin,” said Tim Bradley to Fighthype in predicting Canelo Alvarez will destroy Golovkin in their trilogy fight in September.
“I thought Golovkin looked terrible at the beginning and then closed strong at the end, which is good,” Bradley continued about GGG. “It showed that he has great conditioning. He’s still able to fight. He still has some power, yeah.
“Punch placement, and I saw some good lateral movement from him. But Canelo is on another level, man, for Golovkin.
“That’s going to slow him down, I think that’s honestly going to slow him down,” said Bradley when asked if Golovkin will look better in going up to 168 to challenge Canelo for his undisputed championship in September.
Golovkin might actually be improved by going up to 168, because he looked drained at the weigh-in last Friday, and still appeared worn out during the fight with the depleted look on his face.
With Golovkin’s power, superior stamina & jab, he’s got an excellent chance of beating Canelo in the trilogy match in September. Whether the judges will give Golovkin the decision against the popular A-side Mexican star Canelo is another matter.
You’ve got to assume that Canelo will want to bring the third fight with Golovkin back to the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, which is the same venue where the Mexican star twice fought GGG in the past in contests that had controversial results.
“It’s a different animal. It’s his [GGG] first fight at 168 pounds,” said Braadly “He’s never fought past 160, bro. It’s a different animal. Canelo has fought at that weight and 175. Come on, dog. So, I see him [Canelo] beating him [Golovkin] and stopping him late.
“Yes, but, no,” said Bradley when asked if Golovkin is to Canelo what Juan Manuel Marquez was for Manny Pacquiao. “I feel like in the last fight [against Golovkin], Canelo found the key,” said Bradley in alluding to Alvarez’s controversial 12 round majority decision against Golovkin in September 2018.
“You saw it early on in his fight against Murata, Murata was going down to the body and pushing him back. That’s what Canelo is going to do. He’s going to press forward [against Golovkin].
“He’s a little more slippier than, a lot more slippier than Murata and he’s going to be landing his kill shots over the top, right hands, left hooks, whatever. He’s going to set him up.
“I think conditioning-wise, Canelo is at his peak right now, he’s fighting at his peak.
“I see him stopping him [Golovkin], bro, and if he doesn’t stop him, he’s going to hurt him really badly in the later rounds for sure,” said Bradley in predicting a Canelo will administer a beat down on Golovkin in their trilogy fight in September.
“What about down to the body?” said Bradley in predicting a victory for Canelo over Golovkin if they meet up on September 17th.