Gennadiy Golovkin doesn’t have to look very far to find his next willful challenger.
Former junior middleweight titlist Jaime Munguia saw his name float as a person of interest to take on the middleweight title holder twice. That fight remains in the game after Golovkin made do with miserably outmatched mandatory challenger Kamil Szeremeta, scoring four knockdowns en route to a 7th round stoppage win on Friday night at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Fla.
As previously reported by Keith Idec, editor of BoxingScene.com, a fight between Golovkin and Munguia is one of many that DAZN is considering for the first half of its 2021 schedule. Both boxers are currently exclusive to the sports streaming service. – Golovkin (41-1-1, 36KO) via his own deal, and Munguia via ties to Golden Boy Promotions – and with at least one party very interested in making the fight happen.
“Jaime Munguia certainly deserves a shot for the Triple G middleweight title,” Eric Gomez, president of Golden Boy Promotions told BoxingScene.com shortly after Golovkin’s last victory. “It’s the most intriguing fight that can be fought in the division, pitting Mexico’s biggest rising star against the most dominant 160-pound champion of the past decade.
Munguia from Tijuana (36-0, 29KOs) once continued a fight with Golovkin who was an undefeated and unified middleweight titlist when he needed an opponent for a May 2018 date. The vacancy came after that Saul “ Canelo ” Alvarez tested positive for clenbuterol, which in turn prompted a six-month suspension to ruin revenge plans with Golovkin eight months after their controversial September 2017 draw.
A fight between Golovkin and a then 154-pound contestant at Munguia was dismissed by the Nevada State Athletic Commission, killing any hope of saving the Cinco de Mayo date. Golovkin instead took his act in Southern California, where he wiped out Vanes Martirosyan in two rounds for his last successful title defense. Four months later, his 12-round loss to Alvarez ended a middleweight reign that dated back to his first provisional title victory in 2010.
A week later, Munguia slaughtered Sadam Ali in four rounds to flatly claim a 154-pound title, which he successfully defended five times. His reign ended at the end of 2019, leaving his belt in pursuit of a middleweight campaign. Munguia has two knockout wins at 160, stopping Gary ‘Spike’ O’Sullivan within 11 rounds last January in San Antonio, then forcing Tureano Johnson to submit due to a grotesque quote after six rounds. last October in Indio, California. .
After the fight, Munguia expressed interest in the next challenge for a middleweight title. Golovkin regained a title with a relentless 12-round victory over Sergiy Derevyanchenko last October, returning to the ring for the first time since then with Friday’s unbalanced victory over Szeremeta who did nothing to satisfy home viewers.
While some are hoping for a third fight with Alvarez – who is now campaigning in the super middleweight, where he challenges Englishman Callum Smith (27-0, 19KOs) for a major title this Saturday in San Antonio – many others in the industry grew exhausted in the drama that came with such an attempt. Alvarez is keen to unify the super middleweight division – where he physically appears to be at his best weight – while Golovkin has never fought outside of the 160-pound division except for a knockout win over defeated Steve Rolls in June.
In the absence of a unification fight with players like Jermall Charlo, Demetrius Andrade, or the Ryota Murata side title list, a fight with Munguia is certainly appealing from a competitive and notoriety standpoint. It would also pair well with the busy schedule Golden Boy Promotions already offers to start the new year.
“This fight wrote Cinco de Mayo Weekend all over the place,” Gomez insists. “And if that were done, it would be the icing on the cake of a huge list of world-class cards slated for the first half of 2021, which already includes the Alvarado brothers (Felix, a 108-book title list and a 130 book title list René), Bektemir Melikuziev, (130 book title list) Joseph Diaz Jr. and (154 book title list) Patrick Teixeira.
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox