A clash between GGG and HNN seemed absolutely inevitable for a time, with the anticipation nearing its peak roughly a decade ago. Both were undefeated pros showing dominant form ever since their debuts, and had been stellar amateurs - the Cameroonian-Frenchman with a solid record of 77-4-3 going along with a very respectable international trophy shelf, but obviously paling in comparison to Golovkin's mythical 345-8. The harder-hitting Kazakhstani was always viewed as the bigger prospect but they were both projected by the majority of experts and middleweight scene hobbyists to cut a swath to championship gold and enlist in a lengthy, fan-friendly unification rivalry, as HNN was seen as having the style and boundless athleticism to disrupt GGG's more conventional approach steeped in the fundamentals. It seemed all the more inevitable when they each held a piece of the WBA title pie from 2010 until 2011, with Golovkin as the regular and N'Dam N'Jikam as the interim champion. It was hoped they would meet to solidify not just the WBA title picture but the heir apparent to its previous wearer, Felix Sturm, as the new era's preeminent 160lber. Needless to say, alas, fate had other ideas. Golovkin did indeed establish himself as the successor to Sturm (in fact well surpassing his legacy) but their paths never crossed. Golovkin's stock and worldwide profile rose steadily, thanks in large part to his partnership with Abel Sánchez and becoming HBO's darling...while the road became rockier with each passing year for El Fenomeno, presaged by a close scrape with Avtandil Khurtsidze. In his gritty UD losses to Peter Quillin and David Lemieux he proved that his recuperative powers and heart were up to par with the legendary Dinamita Márquez, whose mantle of "ever able to rise off the canvas" he arguably inherited...but those losses also proved that neither his chin nor his ability quite matched the hype of circa 2009, when many of us tabbed him as potentially the #3 if not second best h2h young middleweight behind Golovkin and maybe Dmitry Pirog. He then furthered his downward spiral when he gambled on another shot at grabbing an Olympic medal after they listed the restrictions on pros competing. It didn't go well. He took a humiliating ass-kicking...from a Brazilian, no less! Topping it off he fought Ryōta Murata twice in a row - getting a questionable decision and then in the rematch suffering the first stoppage defeat of his career. So, you'd think by now a GGG vs. HNN match-up would have lost all luster, right? Well ..not so fast. Golovkin is aging visibly from one fight to another. He is only a year older than N'Dam N'Jikam but honestly seems a bit further removed from his prime in terms of reflexes and other attributes. He also has lost his aura of invincibility - no matter how one scored the Jacobs and Canelo fights, he is no longer the dominant force he once seemed. Murata was also just a terrible stylistic match-up for HNN, and is much younger than GGG, smack in his prime. Especially considering that GGG is now considering taking on the likes of Brandon Adams, does HNN seem like that unrealistic an option?