Breaking down Gennady Golovkin

The opponent

Martin Murray (with the back tattoos) is a very skilled outside fighter whose goal is to stay in the center of the ring.He looked to hit GGG to the body by setting them up with straight punches, tie up to limit exchanges and use his speed. He did a great job in the first. By going to the body early it really slowed the power puncher down later.

GGG’s game plan

He’s a very serious hitter who does his best work when his opponent is on the ropes. Watch their feet here. He tries to take space away from his opponent with every step. He uses jabs to close distance and pressure the opponent back so he can put those powerful hands to work.

Murray doing well

Murray starts to time GGG’s jab and catches him coming with a crisp left hook/ right hand combo and taking only one punch of the 6 GGG threw before tying him up. Solid boxing.

More good work from Murray

Murray was very aware of the counter right hand over the jab and immediately changes level and takes an angle. Notice how Murray’s feet are almost perpendicular to GGG? It means GGG has to turn to face him before he is able to throw a punch without losing his balance. Meanwhile Murray continues his body work and is out of range before GGG can offer any return fire. Beautiful technique.

Keeping busy

Knowing GGG wants to crowd him he does a great job here staying busy making him pay for every inch he takes. If GGG wants it would greatly help if he moved his head a bit more and throw a counter punch. He really does not fight well when you back him up.

On the other hand

He is amazing coming forward. Notice the subtle move of the right hand before he throws the left hook. Feinting into power punches is an INCREDIBLY useful skill to breaking open an opponents defense for a big shot. See how Murray reacts, his right hand forward to try and slap it away? He bit on that feint and bit hard. Very nice from GGG.

The fight begins to turn

Remember how Murray was going to the body earlier? Time for a taste of his own medicine. Notice how the first 5 punches were to the head before GGG changed levels to land a nice right to the body. But I’m noticing that he never moves his head while he punches and is often there to be countered.


GGG is going in on Murray at this point. See how in the last couple gifs GGG isn’t getting clinched now? He figured out that Murray tries to clinch everytime he really starts throwing so he begins to step out after his combos while continuing to punch.

Every trained fighter just cringed.

Body shots hurt like an absolute bitch and it often takes a second before the full pain of them set in. Same right hand to the body he hit him with earlier.

Wearing him down

Murray was very tough and savvy and makes a great fight of it but GGG took so much out of him with that body shot. Murray isn’t as light on his feet and gets trapped more and more often through out the fight. Even as GGG was slowing badly himself. Brave, brave man.

Controlling and blinding

So GGG has Murray cornered and throws a left hook right hand which miss. Murray then tries to exit the corner. GGG turns with him and pushes his head down limiting both Murray’s chance to slip the shot and totally blinding him to the incoming right hand. That tough bastard even got up from this. But regardless beautiful work from GGG.

The stoppage

Murray is beat down and utterly forgets to defend the right hand and the ref mercifully jumps in to stop it.

My thoughts on GGG: Very hard puncher. A once in a generation type of power coupled with an Iron chin and solid ring cutting ability make him a tough night for anyone. That said I’m not sure he’s quite all their mentally yet. He forgets to do things like jab, move his head during combinations or move after his opponent lands. It’s like he freezes there and almost never acts like he thinks more than 1 is coming at him, so he takes more punches the longer your combos, and doesn’t show good skill off the back foot. But he has a brilliant offensive mind with good punch selection and use of feints before power punches. My opinion: a physically gifted man with serious holes in his game.


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