Gennadiy Golovkin vs. Ryota Murata: Fight Odds, Live Stream, Predictions
Gennadiy Golovkin is no stranger to big-time fights, and he'll treat fans to another on Saturday, when the IBF and IBO middleweight champion will battle WBA middleweight titleholder Ryota Murata in Saitama, Japan.
It'll be an early morning fight for North American fans, and it will help make for a full day of boxing action. Ryan Garcia and Emmanuel Tagoe are set to face off on Saturday night.
Golovkin, commonly known by his nickname "GGG" or "Triple G," hasn't fought since defeating Kamil Szeremeta in December 2020. However, the 40-year-old is eager to get back in the ring and prove himself worthy of a third matchup with the only man who has beaten him professionally, Canelo Alvarez.
Saturday's fight will only add fuel to the highly anticipated rematch, which is scheduled for September.
"If he's aggressive with Murata and doesn't take too many shots, maybe you'll all say he's ready for Canelo now," said Golovkin's former trainer, Abel Sanchez, per ESPN's Mike Coppinger. "But if he gets hit a lot and it gets to Round 9 or 10, the fact a guy can carry him for that long will just put doubts in your mind about that matchup in September."
While Golovkin may have his sights set on Alvarez, overlooking Murata would be a mistake. The 36-year-old hasn't fought since December 2019, but he holds a 16-2 record with 13 knockout victories. After both of his losses—against Hassan N'Dam N'Jikam and Rob Brant—he has come back to win the rematch.
It's going to be a furious fight on Saturday, and here's everything you need to know to catch the action.
Fight Info and Latest Odds
Gennadiy Golovkin vs. Ryota Murata: IBF-WBA Unification Bout
Date: Saturday, April 9
Time: 5:10 a.m. ET
Main Event Time (estimated): 8:10 a.m. ET
Location: Saitama Super Arena, Saitama, Japan
Live Stream: DAZN.com and DAZN App
Odds: Golovkin -575 (bet $575 to win $100), Murata +400 (bet $100 to win $400)
Shuichiro Yoshino vs. Masayuki Ito, lightweight
Junto Nakatani (C) vs. Ryota Yamauchi for the WBO flyweight title
Kazuki Anaguch vs. Ryuji Yamamoto, super bantamweight
Hiroka Amaki vs.Taiga Kato, welterweight
*Odds via DraftKings Sportsbook
Preview and Prediction
If Golovkin treats Murata as simply a stop on the way to facing Alvarez again, he's going to be in trouble.
Golovkin turned 40 on Friday and is nearly four years older than his opponent. Murata also matches his opponent's brutal hard-hitting style well.
The Japanese fighter isn't afraid to attack and believes he can outpower the veteran star.
"I think he is past his prime. How I perform my strong points in the ring will be important," Murata told Jack Figg of The Sun.
Murata's "strong points" mirror Golovkin's. Both are aggressive fighters with legitimate knockout power. Each of the younger competitor's last eight victories has come by knockout or stoppage. There's a real chance one direct shot could end this fight for either man.
Murata will also have the support of the home crowd, and Golovkin is adamant he won't take his rival for granted.
"I have too much respect for Murata and his body of work," the Kazakh told Boxing Scene. "My focus is on him and winning his title. That is why I am in Japan."
If Golovkin can withstand Murata's early attack, he should come out on top. He's the more experienced and more skilled fighter, and he should be able to out-land Murata if the fight goes long.
While it may seem counterintuitive, the longer this fight goes, the better it is for Golovkin. Just don't expect it to go the full 12 rounds.
Prediction: Golovkin wins by TKO
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