*Note: WBC title on the line for Canelo Alvarez only, after Cotto allegedly failed to pay a WBC sanctioning fee.

Boxing’s longest ever reigning middleweight champion Bernard Hopkins has said that box office stars Canelo Alvarez and Andre Ward would both frustrate and possibly beat current middleweight king Gennady Golovkin.

Bernard Hopkins speaks

Speaking to New Jersey Record, Herald News and Boxingscene.com’s Keith Idec after Golovkin soundly defeated big-punching David Lemieux, boxing’s oldest world champion Hopkins said other fighters would take heart from the Kazakh KO star’s performance.

“I think a lot of middleweights, maybe super-middleweights and junior-middleweights, looked at this and were seeing something that they can exploit, in spite of a win by the champion,” Hopkins said.

“Lemieux was out-gunned at the end, but sometimes you can leave a blueprint.

“I think after [Saturday night] there may be a few fighters licking their chops.”

Hopkins, currently partnering with Golden Boy Promoters, continued by naming Canelo Alvarez and Andre Ward as the two fighters who could enjoy success against the imperious middleweight Golovkin.

“[Canelo’s] style is totally different from Lemieux. His punches are crisper and sharper. He’s been at the big stage with Floyd Mayweather and I think he learned greatly from that. I think that he’ll see this fight and understand that he has to have discipline through a whole 12 rounds of fighting.

“I see him being a better boxer who can take Triple G into deep waters and frustrate him.”

Canelo Alvarez

Canelo first needs to focus on a huge showdown with current WBC World Middleweight Champion Miguel Cotto, which UK fans can watch LIVE on BoxNation on November 21.

Speaking about Andre Ward’s prospects, Hopkins said he didn’t expect Golovkin to move up to super-middleweight until he “cleans out the middleweight division”.

“Andre Ward would confuse him, frustrate him. You’ve got one straight-up guy and you’ve got one guy who knows how to be on angles, knows how to spin and can crack, and has got a nice size to him.

“He’s not a big, tall guy, but Andre has enough power to make you respect him. Andre is an all-round fighter with an Olympic pedigree.”