By Allan Fox: IBF middleweight champion Gennadiy ‘GGG’ Golovkin vs. WBA champion Ryota Murata (16-2, 13 KOs) will be rescheduled for March or April. The two were initially scheduled to meet in Japan in December, but the date has now been moved to the first quarter of 2022.
This will be the 39-year-old Golovkin’s first fight since his seventh round knockout win over IBF mandatory Kamil Szeremeta in December 2020. GGG could have fought many times since that fight, but he’s been waiting on facing the 35-year-old Murata.
The inactivity has hurt Golovkin’s popularity, as he’s failed to stay in the limelight, but it’s unclear whether he’s concerned about that. Golovkin is nearing the end of his career.
Frankly, it’ll be surprising if Golovkin fights more than a couple of more times before he hangs up his gloves. According to Celebrity Net Worth, Golovkin’s net worth is $30 million.
Murata has losses to Hassan Ndam and Rob Brant, but he’s come back to win his last two fights against Brant and Steven Butler.
You can argue that if Golovkin didn’t have the kind of wealth, he’d have been back in action a long time ago rather than sitting on the sidelines for 12 months after his mismatch against Polish fighter Szeremeta.
Golovkin (41-1-1, 36 KOs) has been sitting inactive for the entire year, waiting for the big money fight with the twice beaten Murata, but when he finally does face the Japanese star, it might not pay the kind of money he’s losing out on by not being active.
If Golovkin had stayed busy and fought two to three times in 2021, he’d likely made more money than what he’ll be getting to face Murata.
For the average, it’s hard to understand Golovkin electing to sit and wait for a year and a half for a fight against Murata.
“Gennady Golovkin, due to fight Murata in December. It looks like it’s going to be rescheduled for March or April,” said Eddie Hearn to iFL TV.
It’ll be interesting to see who Golovkin fights after the Murata match. Does he continue to fight the lesser guys he’s been facing, or will Golovkin challenge himself by facing Jermall Charlo and Demetrius Andrade?
Since Golovkin’s loss to Canelo Alvarez in their rematch in 2018, he’s kept a low profile, seemingly talking less in the media and fighting essentially lesser opposition with his wins over Steve Rolls, Sergiy Derevyanchenko, and Szeremeta.
The fight that Golovkin wants is a trilogy match with Canelo, but it’s unlikely he would have gotten the match, even if he’d focused on fighting the best in contests against Demetrius Andrade and Jermall Charlo.
For all intents and purposes, Canelo has retired from fighting quality opposition since his rematch with Golovkin in 2018, and he probably wouldn’t have agreed to fight the Kazahstan fighter a third time no matter who he beat in the last three years.
But by Golovkin focusing on fighting lesser fighters in Szeremeta, Rolls, and Derevyanchenko, he’s given Canelo an excuse for not having to fight him again.