Gennady Golovkin will defend his WBA middleweight title against Martin Murray on February 21, 2015, in Monte Carlo, returning to the site of a pair of recent wins over Nobuhiro Ishida and Osumanu Adama for what will easily be his biggest bout in the city.
Murray (29-1-1, 12 KO) secured the shot at Golovkin earlier today, beating Domenico Spada in a sloppy affair via technical decision.
Golovkin (31-0, 28 KO) is coming off of an easy TKO-2 win over Marco Antonio Rubio on October 18, having beaten Daniel Geale in three rounds on July 26. Both fights aired on HBO, as will Golovkin-Murray.
"I like to test myself," Golovkin said. "I'm giving him a chance and for Europe this is the biggest fight in the middleweight division. It is important to fight here, where many of my fans and followers are."
"I think he's a top fighter," said Murray. "He's crushed everybody he's been in with, but I've got the tools to beat any middleweight out there. I wouldn't be taking the fight if I didn't think I could win. A lot of his opponents have gone into the fight already beat. You won't get that with me. I'm gonna go in there and stand up to him."
Rodney Berman, the South African promoter who handles Murray's career with Golden Gloves, said that his fighter won't be like those that have come in scared against Golovkin.
"I have the highest regard for Golovkin, but the truth is his opponents have been sitting ducks," said Berman. "Out of fear, they lose the fight before they step into the ring; they're intimidated and scared.
"You look at Murray's background and just know he won't be cowered. He's the first guy I've seen who will create angles, who won't stand in front of Golovkin waiting to be hit. Murray will make Golovkin work. He has the ability to outhustle him," said the man who has famously promoted a number of major upsets over the years."
K2's Tom Loeffler, who promotes Golovkin, said their team is excited to return to Monte Carlo.
"It doesn't get better than coming back to Monte Carlo," added Loeffler. "The atmosphere is electric and Gennady enjoys it. He makes every fight an exciting fight because of his style. Every opponent has a plan, until they feel Gennady's first punch."