Three-Card Monte Carlo: Golovkin Stops Murray

By Robert Ecksel on February 21, 2015
Three-Card Monte Carlo: Golovkin Stops Murray
Murray told the ref, “I’m okay, I’m okay, very, very good. Don’t stop it.” (Christian Kuechl)

Gennady Golovkin kept his KO streak alive by stopping former British middleweight champion Martin Murray at 2:10 of round 11…

Saturday night at the Salle des Étoiles in Monte Carlo, Monaco, WBA/IBO middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin (32-0, 29 KOs), from Karaganda, Kazakhstan, stopped former British middleweight champion Martin Murray (29-2, 12 KOs), from St. Helens, Merseyside, UK, at 2:10 of round 11.

It was Triple G’s 19th consecutive knockout. But it looked, at least until referee Luis Pabon waved it off, like the fight might go to the judges’ scorecards.

Fighting out of the red corner in red trunks with white trim, it was a more difficult fight for Golovkin than most expected. Murray, fighting out of the blue corner in silver trunks, boxed smart and landed more punches on the champ than we’re used to seeing. His high guard created problems, but Murray was firing a pistol against a cannon, and the cannon was victorious in the end.

Golovkin got off to a slow start. Both men fought carefully in round one, but Murray landed more and dictated the pace. In the second round Murray’s rights to the champion’s face offset the first of many body shots to follow. Whenever Tripe G got close, Murray clinched. It wasn’t pretty but it was effective. We had Murray winning the first two rounds. HBO’s Harold Lederman had it even after two.

Golovkin started letting his hands go in the third round. A right cross was countered by a Murray hook. Another right cross from Golovkin caught and stunned his gutsy opponent. Murray shook it off and continued to set the tempo, but Golovkin was coming on. He landed 22 punches to Murray’s 13.

Always focused, always unrelenting, the champion poured it on in round four. He dropped Murray twice with right hooks to the body. Murray beat the count both times, a testament to his courage. But it looked like it was going to be a short night, or a long night, depending on Murray’s ability to endure pain.

A Golovkin uppercut drew first blood in round five. Murray was busting up, but there’s not an ounce of quit in the rugged Englishman. He fired off a 1-2 that caught the champ, not the first or last combination he would land on this night, and he was fighting back, not with abandon but intelligence at the bell to end the round.

The beatdown continued in rounds six and seven. With blood flowing from both nostrils and his left eye beginning to swell, Murray, when Golovkin wasn’t drilling him along the ropes, continued to fight back. He was able to counter. He was able to land punches. It was impressive if hopeless, much like an antelope trying to evade a lion.

The slaughter continued in round eight. Golovkin’s ability to cut off the ring did Murray no favors. The same holds true for his devastating hooks to the head and body. Murray to his credit sucked it up, but he was a no-win situation. HBO’s troika of Jim Lampley, Max Kellerman and Roy Jones began wondering if it was time to save Murray from himself. His cornerman, somewhat more optimistic, perhaps because he wasn’t taking the punches, told his charge at the end of the round, “I still believe you can win the fight.”

Murray started the ninth by landing a four-punch combination. It was over but not over, at least a far as Murray and his cornerman were concerned. But Golovkin, in addition to his offensive gifts, can take a punch, and the rat-tat-tat of Murray’s fists inspired him to bring out the heavy artillery. In round 10 the champion dropped a depth charge of a right and the challenger went down a third time. He got to his feet at the bell but looked every inch a beaten man.

The ref went to the blue corner to ask Murray if he had enough. He said, “I’m okay, I’m okay, very, very good. Don’t stop it.” Neither Luis Pabon nor anyone else was convinced, but he let the fight continue.

Just seconds into the 11th round, Golovkin nailed Murray with a right. He dropped his hands. He sank against the ropes. Pabon had seen enough and called an end to the fight.

We now know that Golovkin can be hit. We also know, if we didn’t know before, that there’s not a middleweight alive who can beat him.

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Gennady Golovkin vs Martin Murray (Головкин Мюррец)



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  1. AKT 12:30pm, 02/26/2015

    @Old Yank - like you say .. you have the beat. But in this case, in addition to his power, I fear that GGG may be more disciplined than Pavlik (also he is a much better boxer than people give him credit for). Time, only time truly will tell (I don’t believe anyone at Middleweight and under has his number).It will be interesting though to see how how he does against Andre Ward. Ward might just be to GGG, what BH was to Pavlik. if I were on GGG’s team, I would avoid Ward like the plague!

  2. Old Yank 01:11pm, 02/24/2015

    My bad…I just remembered Gary Lockett was stuck inbetween the catch-weight 168 (Taylor) and 170 (Hopkins) bouts for Pavlik.

  3. Old Yank 01:07pm, 02/24/2015

    AKT – He did have power. But I think he had more than that before he came unglued. Pavlik was Arum’s Rumpelstiltskin – he was supposed to spin gold from straw for Arum. In three consecutive bouts Arum paraded Pavlik at 160, a catch-weight under the 168 pound limit and a catch-weight under the 170 pound light heavy limit. Arum was out to prove that Pavlik was so good that he could carry the linear middleweight strap, the super-middleweight strap and the light-heavyweight strap all at the same time. It was a lot to ask of the kid. At his peak, Pavlik was a hell of a lot better than the “rear-view-mirror” crowd gives him credit for. But man! When those wheels came off, they came off!

    The profile of 32 fighters put in front of GGG look a hell of a lot like the 31 fighters put in front of Pavlik before Pavlik met Taylor to claim the 160 pound title. And when Taylor got his rematch at the catch-weight, Taylor made Pavlik bop for 12 – it was a Kovalev-like moment – no quick KO – just 12 hard rounds of boxing – a surprise for those who had claimed Pavlik was a one-dimensional power guy.

    I like GGG a lot. I think he’s the real thing. But I thought Pavlik was the real thing for 34 bouts too.  And so did a hell of a lot of fans and pundits. I’m anxious to see GGG step it up.

  4. AKT 03:05am, 02/24/2015

    @No10Point ...How does anyone measure the exact fraction of a punch’s impact to allow to connect?  It is a science. Agreed. But not that measured! Don’t give GGG too much credit. His jaw has nerves too .. I doubt any boxer would intentionally risk getting clipped on the jaw for the sake of attracting more game.

  5. AKT 02:58am, 02/24/2015

    @Old yank ... Pavlik had other demons he was battling. I never think he was a phenomenally extraordinary boxer, but he did have power, and a lot of it.

  6. No10Point 03:31pm, 02/23/2015

    I really feel that GGG and his corner allowed Murray to connect
    because they knew he couldn’t hurt GGG.  Think about it. How else are you to get bigger name guys to fight you? You can’t purposely lose (though that has happened a lot in the last 10 years that is for sure).
    So you make yourself look vulnerable.

    And looking at GGG’s face after the fight.
    WTH - looked unmarked. Yet we “saw” him get hit. Fraking small movements to adjust the blows.  I guess that is what a 382 fight career gets you.
    345-5 / 32-0

  7. Swans 02:09pm, 02/23/2015

    Koolz. That was such a great reply/comeback that it and u deserve a poem. And i shall write it for thee!

    A ballad for my friend, mentor and archival; Koolz.

    The Man who stayed out in the cold but came back in to get warm. Part 1

    Art thou perhaps like the master
    Bruce? who, having forgotten more
    than most could ever learn; with
    Life’s bitter colds
    being so much harder
    than its warmth
    hath yea struck a deal
    called a truce?

    Art thou perhaps like the Spruce
    who’s withered leaves fall over the bush
    and fern, and yet the sky flies over
    it in turn? 

    Part 2 coming soon.

  8. Old Yank 01:46pm, 02/23/2015

    After dispatching with names like Zuniga, McKart, and Miranda, which middleweight, in his 32nd pro fight had a record of 31-0 with 28 wins via KO when he fought for the linear middleweight title against Jermain Taylor? HINT#1: Only a handful ever lasted to hear the bell for the 7th round. HINT #2: He could cut the ring like no one’s business and (HOINT #3) folks questioned his defense as he stalked to kill. HINT#4: This middleweight had a dance card and record built against fighters with very similar profiles to the fighters GGG has faced in his pro career over 32 bouts. HINT #5: He went mentally tapioca after he met Bernard Hopkins. Final HINT #6: He was surrounded by a lot of hype and sucked in a lot of fans and pundits, me included.

  9. Koolz 01:16pm, 02/23/2015

    Swans
    Yea man I am new to boxing I have only been watching it for over 25 years…What the heck is it?

    Now I am out.

  10. Irish Frankie Crawford Beat Saijo aka Gimpel 01:14pm, 02/23/2015

    Kid Blast-I was a promising middleweight for about a NY minute, til my hands went bad….the referee kept stepping on them!

  11. Swans 12:37pm, 02/23/2015

    Sorry. I meant you Koolz- Are u new to boxing?

  12. Swans 12:35pm, 02/23/2015

    Kid Blast: are u new to boxing?  ( no disrespect).  i am going to have to be even a a little more over dramatic, Perhaps u will get it this time. If u do not; then I will come back and explain it to u :). Take 2. Roll iT!— Dammm man!  What the hell was up with that Circus RinG!  I swear u could have fit 2 Elephants in there with Murray and Golovkin, granted they are trained so would not impede the action, and still Golovkin would have needed a bicycle ( a good bicycle, maybe one of those tour de france ones) to be able to stay with Murray; such was the size of the Ring! It reminded me of a Midwest Plain!

  13. Koolz 07:55am, 02/23/2015

    The ring seemed smaller then usual because of GGG beating Marray across it, from one corner to the next. 

  14. Kid Blast 07:08am, 02/23/2015

    Swans, what are you, a sadist?

  15. Swans 01:28am, 02/23/2015

    man! that ring was way too big! How is Golovkin gonna be able to knock Murray out in the first 2 rounds with a ring that BiG! I mean Golovkin literally has to sprint after Murray just to stay with him. Very unfair if u ask me. Next time lets try to do our best to get Golovkin a smaller ring. not cool man.

  16. Koolz 02:11pm, 02/22/2015

    yea I saw that as well, the whole game Plan for Murray wasn’t to win it was to go the distance with GGG.  I like how Golovkin adjusted got out of the way of his Clinching.  I also love his 3 uppercut Combo?  WOW!

    Murray was tough, by far the best in middle weight division, got totally beat up and knocked down 3 times(first in his career)  and didn’t make it to the 12th round.

    This is the guy that beat Martinez in Argentina.  Now GGG is just a level above them all.

  17. Irish Frankie Crawford Beat Saijo aka Gimpel 01:46pm, 02/22/2015

    Murray knew the score going in…..he was fighting for seconds ....precious seconds….by grabbing…holding…..not engaging and on move away from GGG for more precious seconds…..many of his combos were “keep off me” “leave me alone” efforts. He was submarineing with his head ala SOG Ward and when he went to the body he was digging low most of the time. At some point he decided that his best hope for his career was to go the distance…..period….but GGG being the instinctive fighter that he is sensed that and went for the kill…..no moral victories when you’re in with him.

  18. Mike Casey 12:30pm, 02/22/2015

    Thanks, Beau.

  19. beaujack 12:00pm, 02/22/2015

    Mike Casey, I am glad you are feeling much better, and I agree with your statement that ” Golovkin is one of the greatest fighters I have ever seen “.
    GGG gives added meaning to the adage “seek and destroy”...

  20. Mike Casey 11:50am, 02/22/2015

    Thanks, Ted.

  21. Kid Blast 10:41am, 02/22/2015

    Murray’s corner was braver than Murray. In fact, they were horrible. Thank God for one of my very favorite referees. Luis Pabon.


    Martin would do well to find other handlers

  22. Kid Blast 10:38am, 02/22/2015

    That’s good to know—that you are well. Welcome back

    Reach out next time.

  23. nicolas 10:10am, 02/22/2015

    MOHMMAD: Can’t agree with you that this was a great fight. I think a great fight is one that is close. At best Murray won maybe two rounds, the first two. I only gave him the second, and he almost one the first in my book. Of course he ate more shots than his previous combined, as it went to the eleventh. I guess some have called the first Ali Chuvalo fight a great fight. Murray’s corner was sickening, the scores were apparently announced after the 8th round, and he was so far behind on points that he would have had to score a knockout to win.

  24. Mike Casey 09:38am, 02/22/2015

    Very badly ill, my dear old pal. But a clean bill of health now,  I am happy to say.

  25. Kid Blast 09:25am, 02/22/2015

    Good. Where the hell have you been?

  26. Mike Casey 09:21am, 02/22/2015

    I will soon write about Golovkin - one of the greatest fighters I have ever seen.

  27. Kid Blast 08:39am, 02/22/2015

    Cotto wants the one big retirement payday but I don’t think he wants a bad beating and that’s what GGG would give him. Canelo might be a better choice assuming Kirkland softens him up a bit. Lemieux could emerge as well.

    Cotto has become a diva.

  28. Kid Blast 08:37am, 02/22/2015

    No, GGG ate more shots when he fought Ouma. and Rosado But here he did it because he was looking for the counter. Murray has never been known to have heavy hands and GGG knew that after the first two rounds. It was a serious beat down of a very fine boxer.

  29. Mohummad Humza Elahi 04:04am, 02/22/2015

    Damn, only a round off in my prediction.  This was a great fight and Murray put on a great performance.  No need to praise Golovkin, this is the standard expected from him.  Agree that it’s not wise to just take shots to find an opening and GGG probably ate more shots in this fight then all his previous ones combined.

  30. Ted Spoon 01:54am, 02/22/2015

    Golovkin can be hit, sure, but you’re almost certainly going to be when you fight as he does, applying constant pressure. He also possesses underrated defence, carefully moving his head to either slip or weaken blows. In any event, it’s a moot pint when the opponent is generally trying to survive. Golovkin did well to get rid of a solid contender with a tight guard. Possibly three more fights this year; one has to be Cotto, but what will it take to get him into the ring?

  31. Darrell 11:49pm, 02/21/2015

    Having now seen the fight, all I’ve got to say is….that was just fucken awesome!!

    Murray, I knew, is a tough & skilled hombre.  He doesn’t always start quickly and often boxes on the back foot initially, as he did here, but showed some good combinations as well as excellent right hand counters.  Murray came to fight but the writing was on the wall once GGG landed early and that unearthly power came to the fore.  It could have been stopped at the end of round 5 as the rest of the fight became a show of courage, manliness and no little skill from Murray and an astounding show of relentless crunching power and footwork from GGG.

    Prince Albert looked very happy with the show!

    @ch
    Agree entirely.  GGG taking those shots, even from a moderately powered puncher, is sheer stupidity…...a rare show of unnecessary bravado from Golovkin.

  32. ch. 08:02pm, 02/21/2015

    I see one flaw in GGG, his sometime disdain for defense, thinking he can’t be hurt (even though he can be effective on defense when he chooses). Reminds me of Barrera’s attitude when he faced Junior Jones - and was surprised when Jones “clocked” him. Afterwards Barrera became a better, more rounded fighter, knowing he could be hurt, and hurt badly when underestimating an opponent.

  33. Koolz 07:00pm, 02/21/2015

    Murray flew at least six feet from that knock down in round 10…that’s impressive power!
    A lot of people will say GGG has not defense he can be hit, but honestly he wasn’t even caring about being it, he was testing out Murray’s Defense and finding ways to open him up.  Being hit didn’t phase him in this fight.

    Murray is damn tough. 

  34. Darrell 06:38pm, 02/21/2015

    Bah!  Missed it…....not surprised at Murray’s brave showing, nor by the late round stoppage.

    GGG is running out of middleweight opponents fast!

  35. Kid Blast 05:58pm, 02/21/2015

    A sustained beat down. Murray has a brave corner.

  36. Koolz 05:18pm, 02/21/2015

    Wow Murry gave an amazing performance I though he wasn’t going to get up from the first body shot but went almost 12 rounds, 12 rounds of complete beating!  The guy is damn Tough!
    Murray was a tough nut to crack!


    GGG train Hyper Speed!

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