This week it has been announced that Birmingham’s former British and European Middleweight champion Matthew Macklin will be looking at his third world title shot in New York City on the 29th of June if he faces the unbeaten WBA and IBO Middleweight knockout king Gennady Golovkin of Kazakhstan.
The 30 year old Macklin had his first title back shot back in June 2011 when he travelled to Germany where he lost a controversial split decision against the then “Super champion” of the aforementioned sanction body, Felix Sturm, in Cologne prior to an 11th round stoppage loss to Sergio Martinez, who is widely regarded as the best fighter in the talent rich 11 stone 6lbs division.
Sturm, who would later lose his WBA “Super” title to Australian Daniel Geale after benefiting from more generous home judging against another British Middleweight in the shape of Manchester’s Martin Murray, who coincidentally travels to Buenos Aires to face the 37 year old Argentine star Martinez.
Golovkin, who is also 30 years old, will be engaging in what will be the eighth defence of his WBA title, which he won back in 2010 after destroying the Colombian Nilson Tapia in just three rounds.
Golovkin will be making the third defence of his title in this calendar year after slicing up the durable Gabriel Rosado in seven rounds at Madison Square Garden, and more recently stopping Japanese fighter Nobuhiro Ishida in just three rounds with an powerful and extremely accurate right hand.
Ishida, who had never been stopped in his previous eight defeats, was left like a discarded doll on the bottom rung of the ropes in Monte Carlo.
If Macklin does get to challenge for Golovkin’s aforementioned titles, it will take place on HBO to help further expose Golovkin to American audiences with his well schooled big punching style that has produced a string of knockout reel victories. It should remind American fight fans of the likes of Middleweight knockout kings in the shape of Julian Jackson and Gerald McClellan from the 1990's.
Should Golovkin be victorious against a world level challenger in the shape of Macklin, he could potentially enjoy a breakout year in a talent rich division and it would certainly him propel into the mythical pound for pound list.
It would also place Golovkin in line with some extremely lucrative paydays against fellow champions Geale, the Australian IBF title holder, Martinez, the WBC title holder and American Peter Quillin, the WBO title holder should Quillin be successful in his own forthcoming maiden title defence against Fernando Guerrero at the Barclays Centre later this month.
Although Golovkin has been in a greater number of world title fights, eight to Macklin’s two, Macklin has the superior names on his record, having fought the likes of Martinez, Sturm, former 1990s Light-Middleweight champions Luis Ramon Campas, former British, Commonwealth and European Middleweight champion Jamie Moore, and former European Middleweight champion Amin Askikainen.
Golovkin’s biggest names on his slate are Poland’s former European Middleweight champion Grzegorz Proska, who Golovkin crushed in five rounds and American Lajuan Simon.
Both Macklin and Golovkin stand at 5ft10, but Golovkin has a one and a half inch reach advantage of 73.5 inches to Macklin’s 72 inches and the greater knockout percentage of 88.46%, which makes Golovkin a must watch fighter whenever he is scheduled to box due his ability to delivery destructive one punch knockouts in comparison to Macklin, who has a more modest 60.46% KO rate.
However, Macklin has boxed 175 rounds in comparison to Golovkin’s 106 rounds and has been the championship distance against Sturm and Spaniard Ruben Varon in a European title defence and ten rounds four times in his career.
Macklin has been stopped twice in his four defeats, which should give Golovkin extra confidence going into this fight especially when Macklin’s first stoppage loss was down at Light-Middleweight against Jamie Moore in a British title challenge back in 2006.
In contrast, Golovkin been into the 10th round only once, against Kassim Ouma, so questions remain about Golovkin’s stamina should this fight go long.
Come fight night, Macklin will look to get on the front foot early and force Golovkin to back up to prevent Golovkin planting his feet to get the full power of his fast hard punching style. Macklin would then set up his jab and look to work angles to try and keep Golovkin off balance.
Golovkin will attempt to measure Macklin in the first two or three rounds before getting to work. It is likely that Golovkin will attempt to wear down Macklin with fast switches between the head and body as he possesses the faster hands and greater punching power.
Golovkin will certainly try to take advantage of the fact that Macklin has been dropped in his career, which will see this fight likely to turn into an all out war in which Golovkin’s superior power and hand speed will wear a game Macklin down and force a compassionate stoppage in the mid to later rounds.