By Jake Donovan, photos by Naoki Fukuda

Gennady Golovkin and Martin Murray are ripped and ready for their middleweight clash, as the two collide Saturday evening at Salle des Étoiles in Monte Carlo, Monaco.

Golovkin tipped the scales at a shredded 158.9 lb., while the equally supremely conditioned Murray crept right under the middleweight limit at a fighting ready 159.9 lb.

The bout will air live from location on HBO, marking the network's first ever boxing telecast from the luxurious resort location in its 40+ years in the business. 

Golovkin (31-0, 28KOs) attempts the 13th defense of his middleweight title, having held at least one portion of the crown since Aug. '10. The hard-hitting Kazakhstani has turned heads since his amateur days - capped by a silver medal in the 2004 Athens Olympics - and especially since turning pro in 2006. 

Included among his lofty credentials is a current 18-fight knockout streak, the most recent coming in the form of a two-round blitzing of Marco Antonio Rubio last October. The night marked his debut on the U.S. West Coast, playing to a sold-out crowd at StubHub Center in Carson, Calif. 

His showdown with Murray marks Golovkin's third trip to Monte Carlo in as many years. HBO drew harsh criticism for failing to secure TV rights for his eventual 7th round knockout of Osumanu Adama last February, but learned its lesson in ensuring live coverage this time around, as per the terms of Golovkin's renewed contract with the cable giant. 

Murray (29-1-1, 12KOs) goes for his third try at a middleweight belt, with the previous two attempts resulting in the lone blemishes on his ring record. 

Many have argued that the Brit deserved to walk away with the crown on both occasions, each of which came in his opponent's home country. Murray was held to a disputed draw versus Felix Sturm in their Dec. '11 alphabet title clash, but it was his close call versus then-World middleweight king Sergio Martinez in their April '13 championship bout in Argentina that caught the industry's attention. Martinez was outboxed for most of the night and floored midway through, but rallied late to score a debatable decision win. 

Four straight wins have followed for Murray, who serves as the ideal opponent for Golovkin in Monte Carlo, even if under undesirable conditions. The 32-year old has struggled in recent years to secure a travel visa to the United States due to previous jail stints, a past that came back to haunt him in watching a planned bout with Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. in 2012 fall by the wayside. 

Still, he serves as Golovkin's most significant opponent outside of the U.S. and arguably - on paper - the toughest challenge of his career. 

In addition to Golovkin's alphabet hardware at stake, the winner will also be recognized as the mandatory challenger to reigning World middleweight champion Miguel Cotto. 

Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Twitter: @JakeNDaBox