Archive for Alex Leapai

Year-End Awards: Heavyweight, 2013

Posted in Heavyweight, Yearly Awards and Wrap Up with tags , , , , , , , on March 26, 2014 by danboxing
Welcome to my 2nd Annual Year-End Awards and Wrap-Up.  First, a list of awards for the division.  Then, a look at the 20 fighters that did the best work in 2012 specifically, followed by a rundown of the year’s rankings history.  Dig in!

 

Heavyweight Fighter of the Year: Wladimir Klitschko
After spending 2012 practically sitting on his title by failing to fight a single top 10 fighter, Klitschko got back to business a bit this year.  He and runner-up Tyson Fury each beat #3 contenders- Povetkin for Klitschko and Cunningham for Fury- but Klitschko took the nod by throwing in a fringe contender in Francesco Pianeta.

 

Prospect of the Year: Mike Perez
The winner of this award is the fighter to do the most during the year who has never been ranked in the top 10 and has fewer than 3 losses in his career.  Under those criteria, Perez is a clear-cut winner.  He has peaked at his current #11 so far, and while both he and Deontay Wilder have won at an almost identical level this year (Abdusalamov and Audley Harrison), but Perez also added a throw-in win against gatekeeper Travis Walker.

 

Most Important Knockout of the Year: Tyson Fury KO7 Steve Cunningham
This award goes to the fighter who knocks out the highest-ranked opponent to get stopped during the year.  Fury had a little help from his forearm and subtler illegal tactics like constantly leaning on his opponent’s neck, but he nevertheless wore down and knocked out the much smaller #3 Steve Cunningham, who was 2012’s Heavyweight Fighter of the Year after clearly beating Tomasz Adamek.

 

Most Sensational Knockout of the Year: Erkan Teper KO1 Martin Rogan
Normally I would list all the potential candidates and re-watch to pick the most exciting.  But there was no need this time around.  Teper’s under-viewed performance featured about 3 separate knockout punches in succession, and almost certainly retired the Irish veteran, whose jaw was left completely shattered by the blows.

 

Match-Up of the Year: Champ Wladimir Klitschko vs. #3 Alexander Povetkin
This is a simple recognition of the fight between the two fighters whose combined rank totaled the lowest number.  Klitschko-Povetkin is by far the best, with an average rank of 1.5 (with Champ=0).  The runner up is #6 Fury vs. #3 Cunningham.  Unfortunately, Povetkin’s performance didn’t really live up to his ranking, though that may have had a lot to do with abysmal referee Luis Pabon’s determination to let Wlad cheat in absolutely any way he wished throughout the fight.

 

Fight of the Year: #6 Tyson Fury KO7 #3 Steve Cunningham
This is perhaps my most subjective award.  In choosing the winner, I attempt to balance importance, exciting action, and competitiveness.  Fury-Cunningham was a pretty easy call this year.  It was the 2nd highest-ranked fight of the year, behind only the nigh-unwatchable Klitschko-Povetkin.  It was very competitive, with Fury being dropped hard early before coming back to win.  It also had very good action overall, and ended in a knockout.  Can’t get much better.

 

Upset of the Year: Alex Leapai UD10 #20 Denis Boytsov
Apparently #20 is not where you want to be in my rankings, as this award has been won now in consecutive years by underdogs knocking off #20 contenders.  Last year it was Michael Sprott- whose upset was tempered a bit by the fact that he had already outboxed his opponent in a previous fight that was prematurely stopped against him.  This year it was Samoan gatekeeper Alex Leapai springing a total shocker on #20 Denis Boytsov who, despite injury and inactivity, had been long been considered a top 10 contender in many quarters, and who was in line for a shot at the Championship in his next fight.  Leapai now looks poised to get that shot instead, having soundly outworked the Russian and just plain old wanting it more.  Leapai did not appear to be much of a threat, having 4 career losses, 3 of which were against such mediocrities as Yan Kulkov, Baden Oui (a stoppage), Colin Wilson, and with the 4th being a stoppage against the reasonably decent Kevin Johnson.

 

Comeback Fighter of the Year: Chris Arreola
Arreola might be a bit of a peculiar winner in this category, since his fall and comeback both occurred in the same year.  He fell from the top 20 for the first time in memory after a clear-cut loss to Bermane Stiverne, but rose to his highest level in years by destroying the chinless #12 contender Seth Mitchell.  Opportunistic?  Sure.  But he was lost and now he’s found, which makes him really the only choice for this particular award.

 

Robbery of the Year: Vyacheslav Glazkov D10 vs. Malik Scott
Was this a true robbery?  I wouldn’t go that far, personally, to be honest.  To me, a robbery is when one guy clearly won beyond all doubt, and the other guy gets the decision (or draw).  This was close to that, but there were enough toss up rounds to justify a draw if you were a reasonable judge that just consistently favored something about Glazkov’s style, for instance.  I personally scored it 98-92 for Scott, though, and so by my lights it was pretty darned close to clear-cut.  The judges mostly behaved themselves in heavyweight fights this year, and so the only other fight that would really come close to qualifying was Robert Helenius’ victory over Michael Sprott, in a fight that I scored a draw.

 

Now, for anyone that cares, I will rank the division based solely on the fighters’ 2013 accomplishments.  I will use the same criteria that I use to rank them overall (with victories, draws, or should-be victories and draws over top 50 opposition making one eligible), but will completely ignore all fights prior to 2013. 

 

1) Wladimir Klitschko
Significant Results: May 4- TKO6 Fringe Contender Francesco Pianeta.  Oct 5- UD12 #3 Alexander Povetkin.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- Dec 31: Champion
2) Tyson Fury
Significant Results: Apr 20- KO7 #3 Steve Cunningham.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- Apr 21: #6.  Apr 22- Sep 8: #2.  Sep 9- Nov 24: #1.  Nov 25- Dec 31: Unranked (Retired).
3) Kubrat Pulev
Significant Results: Aug 24- UD12 #11 Tony Thompson.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- Jun 9: #8. Jun 10- Jul 21: #7.  Jul 22- Aug 25: #8.  Aug 26- Sep 8: #7.  Sep 9- Nov 17: #6.  Nov 18-24: #5.  Nov 25- Dec 31: #4.
4) Dereck Chisora
Significant Results: Jul 20- KO6* #17 Malik Scott.  Sep 21- TKO5 Gatekeeper Edmund Gerber.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1-Jun 9: #1.  Jun 10- Jul 21: #8.  Jul 22- Aug 25: #7.  Aug 26- Sep 8: #8.  Sep 9- Nov 17: #7.  Nov 18- 24: #6.  Nov 25- Dec 31: #5.
5) Erkan Teper
Significant Results: Aug 31- TKO1 Fringe Contender Michael Sprott.  Nov 16- KO1 Gatekeeper Martin Rogan.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- Sep 1: Unranked.  Sep 2-8: #13.  Sep 9- Nov 17: #12.  Nov 18-24: #11.  Nov 25- Dec 31: #10.
6) Bermane Stiverne
Significant Results: Apr 27- UD12 #15 Chris Arreola
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1-20: Unranked.  Jan 21- Feb 24: #20.  Feb 25- Mar 3: Unranked.  Mar 4- Apr 28: #19.  Apr 29- Jun 9: #12.  Jun 10-23: #11.  Jun 24- Sep 8: #10.  Sep 9- Nov 17: #9.  Nov 18-24: #8.  Nov 25- Dec 31: #7.
7) Alex Leapai
Significant Results: Nov 23- UD10 #20 Denis Boytsov.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- Nov 24: Unranked.  Nov 25- Dec 31: #13.
8) Chris Arreola
Significant Results: Apr 27- L (UD12) vs. #19 Bermane Stiverne.  Sep 7- KO1 #12 Seth Mitchell.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1-20: #17.  Jan 21- Mar 3: #16.  Mar 4- Apr 28: #15.  Apr 29- Sep 8: Unranked.  Sep 9- Nov 17: #10.  Nov 18-24: #9.  Nov 25- Dec 31: #8.
9) Tony Thompson
Significant Results: Feb 23- TKO2 Undefeated Prospect David Price.  Jul 6- TKO5 Prospect David Price.  Aug 24- L (UD12) vs. #8 Kubrat Pulev.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1-20: #16.  Jan 21- Feb 24: #15.  Feb 25- Mar 3: #13.  Mar 4- Apr 28: #12.  Apr 29- Jun 9: #13.  Jun 10-23: #12.  Jun 24- Nov 17: #11.  Nov 18-24: #10.  Nov 25- Dec 31: #9.
10) Mike Perez
Significant Results: May 4- UD10 Gatekeeper Travis Walker.  Nov 2- UD10 Undefeated Prospect Magomed Abdusalamov.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- Nov 3: Unranked.  Nov 4-17: #13.  Nov 18-24: #12.  Nov 25- Dec 31: #11.
11) Deontay Wilder
Significant Results: Apr 27- TKO1 Fringe Contender Audley Harrison.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- Apr 28: Unranked.  Apr 29- Jun 9: #14.  Jun 10- Sep 1: #13.  Sep 2-8: #14.  Sep 9- Nov 3: #13.  Nov 4-17: #14.  Nov 18-24: #13.  Nov 25- Dec 31: #12.
12) Seth Mitchell
Significant Results: Jun 22- UD12 #10 Johnathon Banks. Sep 7- L (KO1) vs. Fringe Contender Chris Arreola.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1-Jun 9: Unranked.  Jun 10-23: #20.  Jun 24- Sep 8: #12.  Sep 9- Nov 3: #16.  Nov 4-17: #17.  Nov 18- Dec 31: #16.
13) Andy Ruiz
Significant Results: Nov 24- RTD3 Gatekeeper Tor Hamer.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- Nov 24: Unranked. Nov 25- Dec 31- #15.
14) Audley Harrison
Significant Results: Feb 23- UD3 Fringe Contender Martin Rogan.  Feb 23- TKO2 Gatekeeper Derric Rossy.  Apr 27- L (TKO1) vs. Undefeated Prospect Deontay Wilder.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1-Dec 31: Unranked.
15) Eric Molina
Significant Results: Apr 27- UD12 Gatekeeper Tony Grano.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1-Dec 31: Unranked.
17) Lucas Browne
Significant Results: Apr 28- UD12 Gatekeeper James Toney.  Nov 2- TKO5 Undefeated Prospect Richard Towers.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1-Dec 31: Unranked.
18) Robert Helenius
Significant Results: Mar 23- UD10 (should have been draw) vs. Gatekeeper Michael Sprott.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- Feb 24: #13.  Feb 25- Mar 3: #14.  Mar 4- Apr 28: #13.  Apr 29- Jun 9: #15.  Jun 10- Sep 1: #14.  Sep 2-8: #15.  Sep 9- Nov 3: #14.  Nov 4-17: #15.  Nov 18- Dec 31: #14.
19) Fres Oquendo
Significant Results: Jun 8- UD10 Gatekeeper Derric Rossy.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- Dec 31: Unranked.
20) Gerald Washington
Significant Results: Jun 8- UD8 Gatekeeper Sherman Williams.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- Dec 31: Unranked.

 

Other fighters ranked during the year are detailed below.  These guys had either bad or rather indifferent years, with most of them failing to snag a rateable victory for various reasons:

 

Vitali Klitschko: Jan 1- Sep 8: #1.  Sep 9- Dec 31: Unranked (Inactive).

 

David Haye: Jan 1- Apr 21: #2.  Apr 22- Sep 8: #3.  Sep 9- Nov 17: #2.  Nov 18- Dec 31: Unranked (Inactive).

 

Steve Cunningham: Jan 1- Apr 21: #3.  Apr 22- Sep 8: #5.  Sep 9- Nov 17: #4.  Nov 18-24: #3.  Nov 25- Dec 31: #2.

 

Alexander Povetkin: Jan 1- Sep 8: #4.  Sep 9- Nov 17: #3.  Nov 18-24: #2.  Nov 25- Dec 31: #1.

 

Tomasz Adamek: Jan 1- Apr 21: #5.  Apr 22- Sep 8: #6.  Sep 9- Nov 17: #5.  Nov 18-24: #4.  Nov 25- Dec 31: #3.

 

Eddie Chambers- Jan 1- Jun 9: #7.  Jun 10- Dec 31: Unranked (Moved Down).

 

Johnathon Banks: Jan 1- Mar 24: #10.  Mar 25- Jun 9: #11.  Jun 10-23: #10.  Jun 24- Sep 1: #18.  Sep 2- Nov 3: #19.  Nov 4-17: #20.  Nov 18-24: #19.  Nov 25- Dec 31: #20.

 

Odlanier Solis- Jan 1- Mar 24: #11.  Mar 25- Jun 9: #10.  Jun 10- Sep 8: #9.  Sep 9- Nov 17: #8.  Nov 18-24: #7.  Nov 25- Dec 31: #6.

 

Marco Huck: Jan 1- Mar 3: #12.  Mar 4- Dec 31: Unranked (Moved Down).

 

Ruslan Chagaev: Jan 1-20: #14.  Jan 21- Dec 31: Unranked. 

 

Alexander Dimitrenko: Jan 1-20: #15.  Jan 21- Feb 24: #14.  Feb 25- Mar 3: #15.  Mar 4- Apr 28: #14.  Apr 29- Jun 9: #16. Jun 10- Sep 1: #15.  Sep 2-8: #16.  Sep 9- Nov 3: #15.  Nov 4-17: #16.  Nov 18-24: #15.  Nov 25- Dec 31: #17. 

 

Denis Boytsov: Jan 1-20: #18.  Jan 21- Mar 3: #17.  Mar 4- Apr 28: #16.  Apr 29- Jun 9: #19.  Jun 10-23: #18.  Jun 24- Sep 1: #19.  Sep 2- Nov 3: #20.  Nov 4-17: Unranked.  Nov 18-24: #20.  Nov 25- Dec 31: Unranked.

 

Jean-Marc Mormeck: Jan 1-20: #19.  Jan 21- Mar 3: #18.  Mar 4- Dec 31: Unranked (Inactive).

 

Vyacheslav Glazkov: Jan 1-20: #20.  Jan 21- Mar 3: #19.  Mar 4- Jun 9: #17.  Jun 10- Sep 1: #16.  Sep 2- Nov 3: #17.  Nov 4-17: #18.  Nov 18- 24: #17.  Nov 25- Dec 31- #18.

 

Malik Scott- Jan 1- Feb 24: Unranked.  Feb 25- Mar 3: #20.  Mar 4- Jun 9: #18.  Jun 10- Sep 1: #17.  Sep 2- Nov 3: #18.  Nov 4-17: #19.  Nov 18-24: #18.  Nov 25- Dec 31: #19.

 

Franklin Lawrence- Jan 1- Mar 3: Unranked.  Mar 4- Jun 9: #20.  Jun 10-23: #19.  Jun 24- Sep 1: #20.  Sep 2- Dec 31: Unranked.

Heavyweight: 2013, Nov 25- Dec 1

Posted in Heavyweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on January 18, 2014 by danboxing
The Hernandez-Alekseev undercard in Bamberg, Germany featured a pretty significant upset.  #20 Denis Boytsov, who was probably in line for a shot at Wlad in his next fight, having been considered among the best available options for years, was soundly outpointed by Samoan gatekeeper Alex Leapai.  Boytsov appeared to be in mediocre shape, having cruised to easy victories against weak opponents for years.  Leapai’s punches seemed to have more steam at the start, and to have held that steam better down the stretch.  Leapai also appeared to want the win a lot more than the Russian.

 

We almost saw another upset in Macau on Sunday (Saturday US time), where undefeated Mexican prospect Andy Ruiz looked to be rather outclassed against gatekeeper Tor Hamer, getting out-hustled and out-punched, while looking very easy to hit.  But Hamer had a rough third and took some shots, and promptly quit before the 4th.  This is unfortunately Hamer’s M.O., as he did very much the same thing against Vyacheslav Glazkov.

 

I agonized a bit over this news, because frankly I think in the end it will just be a case of posturing and attention-seeking, but #1 Tyson Fury retired this week.  He couldn’t have been more clear about it, stating on Twitter that he is “officially” retired, and even after his promoter and his uncle/trainer vehemently denied the retirement, Fury himself confirmed it, clarifying that he is, in fact, a million percent retired.  Fury is very undisciplined in his use of Twitter, and is prone to blurt out dramatic sound bytes based on however he’s feeling at the moment, and I suspect this is little different, but ultimately if I started ignoring unequivocal statements from fighters regarding their statuses, there wouldn’t really be any effective way for a fighter to retire from the rankings at all.  That being the case, and even though I think the result is rather artificial and silly in this case, I am forced to take Fury at his word and remove him from the rankings.  He won’t be eligible until he fights again, since he is essentially inactive now, and can’t change that until he actually enters the ring.  Everyone ranked #2-13 last week moves up a spot, allowing Erkan Teper to make his debut in the top 10.

 

Both of the week’s fights prompt a shakeup in the division this week, as well.  Leapai is naturally going to benefit from clearly beating a top 20 contender.  He does have one inconsistent loss on his record- a fairly dominant TKO loss to Kevin Johnson- but that loss is far enough in the past (over 18 months) that it can detract from his resume without leading to the conclusion that he’s proven to be that kind of fighter in the present day.  He’s also got a 2009 6-round draw to a complete nobody, but that has to be treated as a fluke, since he has destroyed many much better fighters since then.  While comparing resumes as a whole without respect to timing would not allow this result, when weighting recent results more, it’s clear that Leapai belongs ahead of Robert Helenius.  Helenius has had two consecutive inconclusive fights with clearly non-top-20 opposition and a clear loss to Chisora before that.  One of those opponents was not even top 50.  Leapai just beat a top 20 guy, and I think it would be hard to say that Helenius is currently capable of doing that with any degree of confidence.  Obviously injury has played a major part in that, but the Nordic Nightmare has been fighting with injury for so long now that it’s become a part of who he is as a fighter.  For these reasons, Leapai debuts at #13.  

 

Ruiz’s opponent Hamer, meanwhile, was not quite as good as Boytsov.  Hamer made a name for himself by- perhaps ironically- beating Kevin Johnson on Prizefighter.  Johnson was a borderline top 20 guy at the time, and so that got Hamer near that level.  But it was a non-shutout decision in a 3-round fight.  You’ve gotta take that into account, especially after he straight up quit against Glazkov.  He also had a loss to an unheralded prospect in Kelvin Price earlier on.  I had Hamer as roughly the #29 heavyweight in the world going in.  Not bad, but not Boytsov, who if anything was viewed as underrated at #20.  When comparing Ruiz to Helenius, a different result emerges.  While I’m not willing to give Helenius credit for wins over Sprott and Williams (I scored both fights as draws), he also didn’t lose.  When I treat a fight as a draw, I generally imagine a midpoint between the status of the two fighters, and act as if both guys showed a level right around that point.  Even as lowly as Sherman Williams was in the ranks at the time of their fight, Helenius was high enough that the midpoint still was around the fringe contender level.  Even after Helenius was diminished by that fight, the Sprott fight had him roughly at the same level, since Sprott himself was nearly a fringe contender after beating Gerber.  So I’ve yet to see anything to suggest that Helenius has fallen so far that he can’t compete at around the level of the top 25, and the aging wins over Peter, Brewster, and Bidenko still justifiably buoy him to a great extent.  Ruiz’s win over Hamer was at a level just below what I’d call the fringe contender level…roughly equivalent to Sprott.  So even taking only the most recent performances into account, it’s not a slam dunk.  The fact that Helenius has beaten a #6 contender and one or two more guys roughly equivalent to Hamer- even if it was in the fairly distant past- is dispositive in this case.  

 

Ruiz does, however, surpass Seth Mitchell in a close call.  Mitchell got a win over #19 Ibragimov to give him the advantage, but then got stopped by a guy only a shade more credible than Hamer in Johnathan Banks.  Technically Mitchell then beat a #10 contender by winning his rematch with Banks, but you’ve gotta discount that for the most part, since essentially he had created that #10 contender himself by the first fight.  So he beat #19, and then lost and won against a guy ranked between 20-25 on his own merits.  That means he had probably proved himself pretty much in his element around the 19-25 range, which is a notch better than Ruiz has done in the one relevant fight.  But unfortunately for Mitchell, his last fight was a demolition at the hands of Chris Arreola, who was ranked in the low-mid 20’s, and just a couple spots ahead of Hamer at the time.  That’s a pretty compelling case that Ruiz has proven himself at the higher level of late.  

 

Accordingly, Ruiz debuts at #15.  Helenius holds firm at #14.  Mitchell remains at #16.  Alexander Dimitrenko, with his win over Luan Krasniqi now over 5 years old, takes a dive from #15 to #17.  Glazkov and Scott each fall two places to #18 and 19, respectively, and Banks hangs on at #20.  Boytsov doesn’t need the help to make his own exit.  I must say that the heavyweight division is getting more exciting overall with all of this new blood, though the top of the division is greatly diminished by the removal of the top two contenders in the past two weeks.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (Weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: Wladimir Klitschko (231-444-444)
Last Fight: 10/5/2013- UD12 #3 Alexander Povetkin
Next Fight: Unknown
While the order is unclear at least to me, Klitschko’s current mandatory obligations include Alex Leapai and Kubrat Pulev.  In the WBA, it looks like the spot would be filled by an eliminator at some point, either between Povetkin and Luis Ortiz, or whatever other fighters in their rankings would be available.  The technically retired Tyson Fury also called Wlad out right before his retirement.
 
1) Alexander Povetkin (1-318-318)
Last Fight: 10/5/2013- L (UD12) vs. Champ Wladimir Klitschko
Next Fight: Unknown
Povetkin is calling for a rematch.  He would probably need to become the WBA mandatory by winning an eliminator (possibly against Luis Ortiz) in order to get that shot.
2) Steve Cunningham (1-49-49)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- L (KO7) vs. #6 Tyson Fury
Next Fight: 12/14/2013- vs. Unknown Opponent
Cunningham will appear on a December 14 card in Atlantic City.
3) Tomasz Adamek (1-188-188)
Last Fight: 8/3/2013- UD10 Dominick Guinn (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Kathy Duva, who promotes both fighters, says she will reschedule the cancelled Adamek-Glazkov fight.
4) Kubrat Pulev (1-82-159)
Last Fight: 8/24/2013- UD12 #11 Tony Thompson
Next Fight: 12/14/2013- vs. Ondrej Pala (UNR)
Pulev will be fighting on December 14 while waiting for a shot at Wlad.  His opponent is reported to be, interestingly, Ondrej Pala.  Pala is scheduled to fight Dereck Chisora this weekend, so there’s a lot that can happen on the way to that fight, obviously, if true.
5) Dereck Chisora (1-104-167)
Last Fight: 9/21/2013- TKO5 Edmund Gerber (UNR)
Next Fight: 11/30/2013- vs. Ondrej Pala (UNR)
Chisora has secured Ondrej Pala as a replacement opponent for this weekend- an upgrade from the original opponent.  This begins what could be a heck of a 3-weekend span for Pala, who according to Bulgarian media has also agreed to fight Kubrat Pulev on 12/14.
6) Odlanier Solis (1-36-183)
Last Fight: 7/27/2013- TKO7 Yakup Saglam (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Solis was briefly set to fight Kevin Johnson on November 26, but quickly withdrew due to an IBF mandate that he fight Carlos Takam, instead.  Reportedly that fight will now happen in January, though it’s not finalized yet.
7) Bermane Stiverne (1-23-39)
Last Fight: 4/27/2013- UD12 #15 Chris Arreola
Next Fight: Unknown
Stiverne is currently fighting his promoter Don King, in court, for the right to possibly fight Vitali in February.
8) Chris Arreola (1-12-12)
Last Fight: 9/7/2013- TKO1 #12 Seth Mitchell
Next Fight: Unknown
Arreola may be a candidate for Wilder, or could fight for a vacant title in a rematch with Stiverne, should Vitali retire.  Fury has also named him as someone he’d like to replace David Haye with for February 8.
9) Tony Thompson (1-2-183)
Last Fight: 8/24/2013- L (UD12) vs. #8 Kubrat Pulev
Next Fight: Unknown
Thompson is now actively seeking a fight with Povetkin, Fury, Adamek, or Wilder.
10) Erkan Teper (1-1-13)
Last Fight: 11/16/2013- KO1 Martin Rogan (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Teper might have scored the heavyweight knockout of the year, and probably retired Martin Rogan in the process.
11) Mike Perez (1-4)
Last Fight: 11/2/2013- UD10 Magomed Abdusalamov (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Perez will have to do what many great fighters have had to do in the past- get over the psychological difficulty of having beaten a man to within an inch of his life, just by doing his job.
12) Deontay Wilder (1-31)
Last Fight: 10/26/2013- TKO4 Nicolai Firtha (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
In the immediate aftermath of the Haye-Fury fallout, Wilder apparently agreed verbally to fight Fury on February 8.  But a couple days later, Wilder’s promoter revealed that Fury’s management wasn’t returning phone calls, and Fury announced his retirement around that same time.  The fight looks dead.
13) Alex Leapai (1-1)
Last Fight: 11/23/2013- UD10 #20 Denis Boytsov
Next Fight: Unknown
Leapai, in Rocky-like fashion, now stands as one of Wlad’s two mandatory challengers, and should get his shot in the early part of 2014.
14) Robert Helenius (2-183)
Last Fight: 3/23/2013- W*(UD10) vs. Michael Sprott (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
If there was a fatal rift between Helenius and Sauerland, it appears to have been quietly repaired, as Helenius’ team now claims there is no plan to buy out his contract.  Helenius is reportedly back in fighting condition after a wrist injury in his last fight, and intends to return in early 2014.
15) Andy Ruiz (1-1)
Last Fight: 11/24/2013- RTD3 Tor Hamer (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
I’m not sure we got a good picture of Ruiz’s ability against Hamer, as he really needed just one solid round to make the mentally fragile New Yorker submit.
16) Seth Mitchell (2-25)
Last Fight: 9/7/2013- L (TKO1) vs. Chris Arreola (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Mitchell’s chin is so fragile that he might want to consider calling it a career.  Golden Boy’s CEO says he’s advised Mitchell to do just that, though he reports that Mitchell seems to have no such intention.
17) Alexander Dimitrenko (1-150)
Last Fight: 3/9/2013- UD8 Ivica Perkovic (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Dimitrenko is rumored at least to be fighting Sam Sexton in the first round of the WBC World Cup, but that tournament appears to be in limbo for the time being, at least.
18) Vyacheslav Glazkov (1-49)
Last Fight: 11/16/2013- UD10 Garrett Wilson (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
See Adamek’s notes, above.
19) Malik Scott (1-40)
Last Fight: 7/20/2013- L (KO6*) vs. #8 Dereck Chisora
Next Fight: Unknown
Scott is getting serious buzz for a fight with Wilder.
20) Johnathon Banks (1-54)
Last Fight: 6/22/2013- L (UD12) vs. #20 Seth Mitchell
Next Fight: Unknown
Banks apparently dinged his hands up pretty good in the Mitchell fight- an alternate explanation for those who, like me, thought his inexplicable failure to follow up on his early success was a bit suspicious.  He’s been doing physical therapy, and is about ready to get back in the ring.  He’d like a rematch with Mitchell, but unfortunately a trilogy probably isn’t of much benefit to the fragile young contender at this point.  He’s penciled-in for the second round of the WBC World Cup, against the winner of Sam Sexton and Alexander Dimitrenko, but as noted above, that whole tournament is delayed and in doubt.
 

 

THE WEEK AHEAD: Monday features a rare occurrence in Tokyo.  No, not Godzilla, but rather a boxrec top-50 heavyweight in action.  Kyotaro Fujimoto is his name.  He’s a one-loss prospect.  Not a great prospect, I’ll admit, having lost to Solomon Haumono within the last year, but his back-to-back stoppage wins over fairly low-level journeymen since then have nevertheless given him the rankings points necessary.  For what it’s worth, he’s the Japanese Champion- the best of 5 currently active Japanese heavyweights.

 

The next night in Sunrise, Florida, Antonio Tarver returns from a steroid suspension to fight journeyman Mike Sheppard in a heavyweight match from Sunrise, Florida, to be televised by Fox Sports 1.

 

Saturday in London, #5 Derek Chisora takes on reasonably solid Czech journeyman Ondrej Pala, who does have a few decent wins over arguably top 50 opposition in his career.

Heavyweight: 2013, Nov 18-24

Posted in Heavyweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on January 14, 2014 by danboxing
I don’t want to be writing all night, so I’ll jump right into the Thursday Prizefighter results from London:

 

Round 1: Journeyman Jason Gavern of the US dropped and outpointed the UK’s Larry Olubamiwo.  His chin and conditioning appeared questionable by the time it was all over, but he got a retty clear 29-27 win over the rather dirty Brit.

 

Faded and chubby legend James Toney looked pretty decent for a 45 year-old.  He didn’t work too hard, but had solid defense as always, and threw in surprising quickness and handspeed.  It was more than enough to take care of rather novice journeyman Matt Legg.  Toney lit Legg up with a combination in round 3, and referee Victor Loughlin stopped it.  Objectively, it was a quick stoppage, but Legg was obviously out of his league, pretty badly hurt, and had zero chance of winning.  I think Loughlin was being intentionally merciful.

 

English gatekeeper Michael Sprott had his hands full early against the powerful and sharp American Damian Wills.  But after seemingly outclassing Sprott in the first round, Wills seemed to lose all desire to win, and let Sprott vastly outwork him in the last two to take the win.  I didn’t make note of what judge had what score while watching it, and boxrec doesn’t specify, but one of the judges could only make a call in one round of what was a pretty easy fight to score, having it 30-29.  Nevertheless, a well-earned UD for Sprott.

 

In the 4th quarterfinal, undersized American Brian Minto showed a world-class motor, grinding Britain’s Tom Little- much taller, but a little ungainly- to dust for 3 clear rounds.  The British judges, obviously biased, had it only 29-28 (Victor Loughlin and Steve Gray) for Minto and 29-28 Little (Richie Davies).  Davies should have been relieved of his duties for the night right then and there, because he obviously wasn’t in the right frame of mind to be judging.

 

Round 2: Gavern pulled off a bit of an upset.  All three of his rounds with Toney were close, but Toney showed surprisingly sloppy technique and a noticeable lack of fire by comparison to Gavern.  Gavern, for his part, appeared to have the heavier hands, worked harder, and was a bit more accurate.  He also used his natural size well at times.  Marcus McDonnell had it even, having failed to pull the trigger in one of the rounds.  Davies and Gray both had it 29-28 for Gavern, who advanced.

 

In the second semi, Sprott dominated and frustrated Minto behind a wonderful jab for the first round, but nearly got stopped after Minto caught up in the 2nd.  Sprott then won a hard-fought third with veteran tactics, alternating holding with hitting, frustrating Minto just enough to grab the win.  All the judges agreed at 29-28 for Sprott.

 

Final: A bit anticlimactic.  Sprott probably edged the first, again establishing the jab.  In the second, Gavern punished Sprott and nearly stopped him, as the Brit appeared totally gassed.  But he seemed to have tweaked his elbow in the process, and was totally unable to fight back in the third, allowing Sprott to cruise to a foregone conclusion of a victory.  Even more foregone than it should have been, as it turned out.  Two of the, again, biased judges had it a shutout, which is completely incredible.

 

Now, on to Saturday:

 

In Hamilton, New Zealand, Belorussian giant Alexander Ustinov easily handled David Tua.  I don’t know how much my opinion was swayed by Bob Sheridan’s frequently glowing commentary, but I really did feel like Tua looked more lively than usual, even while getting handled by Ustinov’s Klitschko-like 1-2 efficiency.  That being said, Ustinov isn’t exactly Klitschko, is he?  And on the other hand, Tua never ever threw in combination, and never appeared to hurt Ustinov, either.

 

In Ludwigsburg, Germany, #12 Erkan Teper scored a highlight-reel knockout over Irish gatekeeper Martin Rogan.  The fight lasted roughly 90 seconds.  Teper backed Rogan to the ropes, knocked him out with a left, and then landed two further KO-quality follow-ups before Rogan could fall, and the ref got in there right as Rogan slumped to the canvas.  Rogan was hospitalized afterward, and received surgery to repair a shattered jaw.  According to Rogan himself, he’s going to have multiple steel plates inserted to put the jaw together like a jigsaw.

 

Finally, in Verona, New York, #18 Vyacheslav Glazkov outpointed cruiserweight gatekeeper Garrett Wilson- a late replacement for Tomasz Adamek, who suffered an injury during fight week.  Wilson was aggressive but wild, and though he did catch Glazkov with several winging punches during the 10 rounds, he seemed to lack legitimate heavyweight power when he did.  In the end, Glazkov’s size and more concise punching carried the day.  I scored it 97-93 for the Russian.  One of the judges agreed, and the other two had it a round and two rounds wider.

 

Garrett Wilson wasn’t quite credible enough at heavyweight to help Glazkov out in the rankings.  Ditto for Tua-Ustinov, as Tua hasn’t won anything of real consequence since beating Shane Cameron over 4 years ago.  An additional ditto in the case of Prizefighter.  Sprott was the only member of the field that was at a top 50 level at any point during the proceedings, despite the often impressive work of Gavern.

 

The remaining result is Teper-Rogan.  Rogan, due to his prior Prizefighter win over Sosnowski, was probably at least technically in the top 50 going in.  Even so, the difference in established levels between the two prior to the fight means that it neither improves Teper’s ranking nor hurts Rogan’s. 

 

The one change that does affect the rankings is that #2 David Haye withdrew from the Fury fight, citing a serious injury.  Injury or no, Haye was living on borrowed time after waiting nearly a year to schedule the fight before now pulling out twice.  Even aside from that, the injury- according to Haye- is serious enough that he might never fight again, and so his removal is justified on multiple grounds.  Everyone ranked #3 and below last week moves up a spot, and Denis Boytsov returns to the rankings just in time for his fight with Leapai this weekend, while Tony Thompson reclaims a spot in the top 10 for the first time in a while.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (Weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: Wladimir Klitschko (230-443-443)
Last Fight: 10/5/2013- UD12 #3 Alexander Povetkin
Next Fight: Unknown
Tyson Fury called Wlad out immediately after Haye withdrew from their fight, but there are rumors that the Champ might fight Ustinov or the Boytsov-Leapai winner in March.
1Tyson Fury (11-122-122)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- KO7 #3 Steve Cunningham
Next Fight: Unknown
Fury is…well…furious, after Haye withdrew a second consecutive time.  He’s now calling out Wlad, and rightly so.
2) Alexander Povetkin (1-317-317)
Last Fight: 10/5/2013- L (UD12) vs. Champ Wladimir Klitschko
Next Fight: Unknown
Povetkin is calling for a rematch.  Wishful thinking, all the way.
3) Steve Cunningham (1-48-48)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- L (KO7) vs. #6 Tyson Fury
Next Fight: 12/14/2013- vs. Unknown Opponent
Cunningham will appear on a December 14 card in Atlantic City.
4) Tomasz Adamek (1-187-187)
Last Fight: 8/3/2013- UD10 Dominick Guinn (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Adamek withdrew from the Glazkov fight due to illness, on just two days notice.
5) Kubrat Pulev (1-81-158)
Last Fight: 8/24/2013- UD12 #11 Tony Thompson
Next Fight: 12/14/2013- vs. Unknown Opponent
Pulev will be fighting on December 14 while waiting for a shot at Wlad.  No opponent yet.
6) Dereck Chisora (1-103-166)
Last Fight: 9/21/2013- TKO5 Edmund Gerber (UNR)
Next Fight: 11/30/2013- vs. Unknown Opponent
Chisora is now scrambling for a new opponent after Matteo Modugno withdrew from their November 30 bout.
7) Odlanier Solis (1-35-182)
Last Fight: 7/27/2013- TKO7 Yakup Saglam (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Solis was briefly set to fight Kevin Johnson on November 26, but quickly withdrew.
8) Bermane Stiverne (1-22-38)
Last Fight: 4/27/2013- UD12 #15 Chris Arreola
Next Fight: Unknown
Stiverne’s immediate future- which appeared bright since he is in line to fight for what figures to be a vacant title now that Vitali Klitschko is more or less out of the picture- is now in doubt, as he joins a long list of fighters to sue his promoter, Don King.
9) Chris Arreola (1-11-11)
Last Fight: 9/7/2013- TKO1 #12 Seth Mitchell
Next Fight: Unknown
Arreola may be a candidate for Wilder, or could fight for a vacant title in a rematch with Stiverne, should Vitali retire.  Fury has also named him as someone he’d like to replace David Haye with for February 8.
10) Tony Thompson (1-1-182)
Last Fight: 8/24/2013- L (UD12) vs. #8 Kubrat Pulev
Next Fight: Unknown
Thompson is now actively seeking a fight with Povetkin, Fury, Adamek, or Wilder.
11) Erkan Teper (1-12)
Last Fight: 11/16/2013- KO1 Martin Rogan (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Teper might have scored the heavyweight knockout of the year, and probably retired Martin Rogan in the process.
12) Mike Perez (1-3)
Last Fight: 11/2/2013- UD10 Magomed Abdusalamov (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Perez will have to do what many great fighters have had to do in the past- get over the psychological difficulty of having beaten a man to within an inch of his life, just by doing his job.
13) Deontay Wilder (1-30)
Last Fight: 10/26/2013- TKO4 Nicolai Firtha (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Wilder says he’ll be looking for a title shot in 2014, and has been called out by Tony Thompson recently.  Malik Scott also appears to be an option, and Wilder is also among the three fighters that Fury wants to replace Haye with for February 8.
14) Robert Helenius (1-182)
Last Fight: 3/23/2013- W*(UD10) vs. Michael Sprott (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
If there was a fatal rift between Helenius and Sauerland, it appears to have been quietly repaired, as Helenius’ team now claims there is no plan to buy out his contract.  Helenius is reportedly back in fighting condition after a wrist injury in his last fight, and intends to return in early 2014.
15) Alexander Dimitrenko (1-149)
Last Fight: 3/9/2013- UD8 Ivica Perkovic (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Dimitrenko is rumored at least to be fighting Sam Sexton in the first round of the WBC World Cup, but that tournament appears to be in limbo for the time being, at least.
16) Seth Mitchell (1-24)
Last Fight: 9/7/2013- L (TKO1) vs. Chris Arreola (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Mitchell’s chin is so fragile that he might want to consider calling it a career.  Golden Boy’s CEO says he’s advised Mitchell to do just that, though he reports that Mitchell seems to have no such intention.
17) Vyacheslav Glazkov (1-48)
Last Fight: 11/16/2013- UD10 Garrett Wilson (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Glazkov will go from a non-TV tune-up directly to a NBC-televised afternoon showdown with Adamek.
18) Malik Scott (1-39)
Last Fight: 7/20/2013- L (KO6*) vs. #8 Dereck Chisora
Next Fight: Unknown
Scott is getting serious buzz for a fight with Wilder.
19) Johnathon Banks (1-53)
Last Fight: 6/22/2013- L (UD12) vs. #20 Seth Mitchell
Next Fight: Unknown
Banks apparently dinged his hands up pretty good in the Mitchell fight- an alternate explanation for those who, like me, thought his inexplicable failure to follow up on his early success was a bit suspicious.  He’s been doing physical therapy, and is about ready to get back in the ring.  He’d like a rematch with Mitchell, but unfortunately a trilogy probably isn’t of much benefit to the fragile young contender at this point.  He’s penciled-in for the second round of the WBC World Cup, against the winner of Sam Sexton and Alexander Dimitrenko, but as noted above, that whole tournament is delayed and in doubt.
20) Denis Boytsov (1-1)
Last Fight: 6/15/2013- KO3 Oleksandr Nesterenko (UNR)
Next Fight: 11/23/2013- vs. Alex Leapai (UNR)
Boytsov probably has a shot at the Championship waiting for him if he can get by Leapai.

 

THE WEEK AHEAD: Saturday, on the Bamberg, Germany undercard for Hernandez-Alekseev, undefeated fringe contender Denis Boytsov takes on Samoan gatekeeper Alex Leapai.  Leapai is barely a member of the top 50, but is still the best opponent Boytsov has fought since 2009.

 

On the Pacquiao-Rios undercard (Sunday in Macau, though it’s going to be Saturday when those of us stateside watch it live on PPV), undefeated prospect Andy Ruiz meets gatekeeper Tor Hamer- his toughest test to date.

Heavyweight: 2013, Aug 12-18

Posted in Heavyweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on August 17, 2013 by danboxing
Samoan borderline top 50 heavyweight Alex Leapai got the job done on Friday in Hengyang, China, stopping former top 50 cruiserweight Felipe Romero in 9.  Romero was on the downside after absorbing defeats against Polish prospects Masternak and Glowacki, but in the end it may have been Leapai’s greater comfort at heavyweight that made the difference.  Romero apparently did have his moments, as he won 2 rounds unanimously of the completed 8, and a 3rd by majority, but went down 3 times: once in the first, and twice again in the 9th.

 

#13 Deontay Wilder did his thing in Indio, California later that night, destroying inactive and likely totally shot journeyman Sergei Liakhovich- a former contender- in under a round.  Wilder brutalized Liakhovich along the ropes, leaving the Belarorussian spasming on the canvas.  Liakhovich has been brutally stopped in his last three, and should consider retiring.  Given Liakhovich’s status as nowhere near the top 50, however, this fight does probably a lot for Wilder’s reputation, but nothing for his ranking.

 

No changes this week.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (Weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: Wladimir Klitschko (216-429-429)
Last Fight: 5/4/2013- TKO6 Francesco Pianeta
Next Fight: 10/5/2013- vs. #4 Alexander Povetkin
Klitschko-Povetkin is now officially signed for 10/5 in Moscow.
1) Vitali Klitschko (253-253-253)
Last Fight: 9/8/2012- TKO4 Manuel Charr (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Klitschko requested and was granted an extension on purse bids by the WBC for his mandated showdown with Bermane Stiverne, frustrating the would-be challenger to no end.
2) Tyson Fury (17-108-108)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- KO7 #3 Steve Cunningham
Next Fight: 9/28/2013- vs. #3 David Haye
Fury-Haye is a done deal for September 28 in Manchester.
3) David Haye (17-57-57)
Last Fight: 7/14/2012- TKO5 #6 Dereck Chisora
Next Fight: 9/28/2013- vs. #2 Tyson Fury
See Fury’s notes, above.
4) Alexander Povetkin (57-303-303)
Last Fight: 5/17/2013- TKO3 Andrzej Wawryzk (UNR)
Next Fight: 10/5/2013- vs. Champ Wladimir Klitschko
See Wlad’s notes, above.
5) Steve Cunningham (17-34-34)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- L (KO7) vs. #6 Tyson Fury
Next Fight: Unknown
Cunningham is now sparring with the man that knocked him out in April- Tyson Fury.
6Tomasz Adamek (17-173-173)
Last Fight: 8/3/2013- UD10 Dominick Guinn (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
A collision between two of Main Events’ blue chip heavyweights is being discussed for November, as they’re looking to match Adamek with Bryant Jennings.
7) Dereck Chisora (4-89-152)
Last Fight: 7/20/2013- KO6* #17 Malik Scott
Next Fight: 9/21/2013- vs. Unknown Opponent
Frank Warren has Chisora scheduled again already for 9/21, promising a big name.  He also has a purse bid scheduled for a EBU mandatory with Kubrat Pulev on August 20.
8) Kubrat Pulev (4-67-144)
Last Fight: 9/29/2012- KO11 Alexander Ustinov (UNR)
Next Fight: 8/24/2013- vs. #11 Tony Thompson
Pulev is scheduled for a high-stakes battle with Tony Thompson in Schwerin, Germany on August 24, and will also be involved with a purse bid on the 20th for one whale of an EBU title defense against Dereck Chisora, as well.
9) Odlanier Solis (10-21-168)
Last Fight: 7/27/2013- TKO7 Yakup Saglam (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Solis is now pushing for what would be a very intriguing fight with Deontay Wilder.
10) Bermane Stiverne (8-8-24)
Last Fight: 4/27/2013- UD12 #15 Chris Arreola
Next Fight: Unknown
Stiverne was the victim of another delayed purse bid, as Vitali asked for and was granted another extension from the scheduled 7/22 date.
11) Tony Thompson (8-168)
Last Fight: 7/6/2013- TKO5 David Price (UNR)
Next Fight: 8/24/2013- vs. #8 Kubrat Pulev
Thompson gets a final eliminator on the 24th against Kubrat Pulev.  The upside would theoretically be another fight with Wladimir Klitschko.  That feels like a score that’s been settled, but I can’t say the winner wouldn’t reasonably deserve it.
12) Seth Mitchell (8-10)
Last Fight: 6/22/2013- UD12 #10 Johnathon Banks
Next Fight: 9/6/2013- vs. Chris Arreola (UNR)
Mitchell-Arreola appears done for September 6 in Indio, California.
13) Deontay Wilder (10-16)
Last Fight: 8/9/2013- KO1 Sergei Liakhovich (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Wilder would like to fight the winner of the fight between Arreola and his friend and stablemate Seth Mitchell.  He’s also been challenged by the Odlanier Solis camp.
14) Robert Helenius (10-168)
Last Fight: 3/23/2013- W*(UD10) vs. Michael Sprott (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
If Helenius’ team was accurate on the severity of his hand injury, it should be long healed by now, although there were immediate rumors that the injury was more serious.
15) Alexander Dimitrenko (10-135)
Last Fight: 3/9/2013- UD8 Ivica Perkovic (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Dimitrenko turned down a Pulev rematch.
16) Vyacheslav Glazkov (10-34)
Last Fight: 8/3/2013- TKO2 Byron Polley (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Glazkov’s gift of a draw to Scott seems to have hurt his standing a bit, as his follow-up was so weak it didn’t even make TV on his promoter’s show.
17) Malik Scott (10-25)
Last Fight: 7/20/2013- L (KO6*) vs. #8 Dereck Chisora
Next Fight: Unknown
Scott was up at 9.5 and ready to go, but Phil Edwards called the fight off in an unfortunate SNAFU.  That being said, Chisora was coming on and I already had him ahead.  Scott probably would have gone on to lose anyway.
18) Johnathon Banks (8-39)
Last Fight: 6/22/2013- L (UD12) vs. #20 Seth Mitchell
Next Fight: Unknown
19) Denis Boytsov (8-217)
Last Fight: 6/15/2013- KO3 Alexander Nesterenko (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Boytsov has signed with Sauerland, and looks to make his debut under their banner in August or September.
20) Franklin Lawrence (8-24)
Last Fight: 1/25/2013- Mark Brown (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown

 

THE WEEK AHEAD: Wednesday in New York, local prospect-gatekeeper hybrid Tor Hamer takes on oft-recycled journeyman Kertson Manswell.

 

Friday, undefeated Polish prospect Artur Szpilka once again throws hands with rugged journeyman Mike Mollo, a crude banger who sent Szpilka to the canvas twice back in February before Szpilka came back to knock him out with a dynamite 1-2 combo in one of the best fights of the year.  The first fight will be replayed on Friday Night Fights (it was originally only televised on an ESPN3 internet stream) to open the night, with the rematch to follow on the Campillo-Fonfara undercard from Comiskey Park in Chicago.

Heavyweight: 2013, Aug 5-11

Posted in Heavyweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on August 5, 2013 by danboxing
Two notable heavyweights were in action on the Main Events card at the Mohegan Sun in Connecticut on Saturday, both in relative mismatches.

 

No Tomasz Adamek heavyweight fight is ever truly easy.  Even Nagy Aguilera had his moments.  His fight this past weekend against high-level journeyman Dominick Guinn was no exception.  But with that caveat in mind, it was a good performance by the Polish contender.  Adamek had a bit of a rocky first round, as Guinn got several solid shots in and probably won the round.  Guinn lost his groove around the 3rd, when he got the worst of a head clash, and it wasn’t to be the last.  Still, he did get a bit of a second wind at one point.  I gave him the 7th, and he never stopped trying.  He gave some great angles, kept Guinn off balance, and worked the jab consistently.  In the end, Adamek won it comfortably- as well he should.

 

On the non-televised undercard, #16 Vyacheslav Glazkov stopped rotund Missouri journeyman Byron Polley in the early 2nd round.  Not surprising, since Polley’s shelf life is about exactly one round- even against far lesser competition than Glazkov.

 

No changes this week.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (Weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: Wladimir Klitschko (215-428-428)
Last Fight: 5/4/2013- TKO6 Francesco Pianeta
Next Fight: 10/5/2013- vs. #4 Alexander Povetkin
Klitschko-Povetkin is now officially signed for 10/5 in Moscow.
1) Vitali Klitschko (252-252-252)
Last Fight: 9/8/2012- TKO4 Manuel Charr (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Klitschko requested and was granted an extension on purse bids by the WBC for his mandated showdown with Bermane Stiverne, frustrating the would-be challenger to no end.
2) Tyson Fury (16-107-107)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- KO7 #3 Steve Cunningham
Next Fight: 9/28/2013- vs. #3 David Haye
Fury-Haye is a done deal for September 28 in Manchester.
3) David Haye (16-56-56)
Last Fight: 7/14/2012- TKO5 #6 Dereck Chisora
Next Fight: 9/28/2013- vs. #2 Tyson Fury
See Fury’s notes, above.
4) Alexander Povetkin (56-302-302)
Last Fight: 5/17/2013- TKO3 Andrzej Wawryzk (UNR)
Next Fight: 10/5/2013- vs. Champ Wladimir Klitschko
See Wlad’s notes, above.
5) Steve Cunningham (16-33-33)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- L (KO7) vs. #6 Tyson Fury
Next Fight: Unknown
Only time will tell where Cunningham goes form here.  His hopes for a title shot are dashed at least for awhile.  Perhaps a trilogy with Adamek would make sense at this point.
6Tomasz Adamek (16-172-172)
Last Fight: 8/3/2013- UD10 Dominick Guinn (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
A collision between two of Main Events’ blue chip heavyweights is being discussed for November, as they’re looking to match Adamek with Bryant Jennings.
7) Dereck Chisora (3-88-151)
Last Fight: 7/20/2013- KO6* #17 Malik Scott
Next Fight: 9/21/2013- vs. Unknown Opponent
Frank Warren has Chisora scheduled again already for 9/21, promising a big name.  He also has a purse bid scheduled for a EBU mandatory with Kubrat Pulev on August 20.
8) Kubrat Pulev (3-66-143)
Last Fight: 9/29/2012- KO11 Alexander Ustinov (UNR)
Next Fight: 8/24/2013- vs. #11 Tony Thompson
Pulev is scheduled for a high-stakes battle with Tony Thompson in Schwerin, Germany on August 24, and will also be involved with a purse bid on the 20th for one whale of an EBU title defense against Dereck Chisora, as well.
9) Odlanier Solis (9-20-167)
Last Fight: 7/27/2013- TKO7 Yakup Saglam (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Solis has a likely fight on the horizon on October 18 in Mexico.
10) Bermane Stiverne (7-7-23)
Last Fight: 4/27/2013- UD12 #15 Chris Arreola
Next Fight: Unknown
Stiverne was the victim of another delayed purse bid, as Vitali asked for and was granted another extension from the scheduled 7/22 date.
11) Tony Thompson (7-167)
Last Fight: 7/6/2013- TKO5 David Price (UNR)
Next Fight: 8/24/2013- vs. #8 Kubrat Pulev
Thompson gets a final eliminator on the 24th against Kubrat Pulev.  The upside would theoretically be another fight with Wladimir Klitschko.  That feels like a score that’s been settled, but I can’t say the winner wouldn’t reasonably deserve it.
12) Seth Mitchell (7-9)
Last Fight: 6/22/2013- UD12 #10 Johnathon Banks
Next Fight: 9/6/2013- vs. Chris Arreola (UNR)
Mitchell-Arreola appears done for September 6 in Indio, California.
13) Deontay Wilder (9-15)
Last Fight: 4/27/2013- TKO1 Audley Harrison (UNR)
Next Fight: 8/9/2013- vs. Sergei Liakhovich (UNR)
Wilder will fight Sergei Liakhovich in Indio, California on August 9.
14) Robert Helenius (9-167)
Last Fight: 3/23/2013- W*(UD10) vs. Michael Sprott (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
If Helenius’ team was accurate on the severity of his hand injury, it should be long healed by now, although there were immediate rumors that the injury was more serious.
15) Alexander Dimitrenko (9-134)
Last Fight: 3/9/2013- UD8 Ivica Perkovic (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Dimitrenko turned down a Pulev rematch.
16) Vyacheslav Glazkov (9-33)
Last Fight: 8/3/2013- TKO2 Byron Polley (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Glazkov’s gift of a draw to Scott seems to have hurt his standing a bit, as his follow-up was so weak it didn’t even make TV on his promoter’s show.
17) Malik Scott (9-24)
Last Fight: 7/20/2013- L (KO6*) vs. #8 Dereck Chisora
Next Fight: Unknown
Scott was up at 9.5 and ready to go, but Phil Edwards called the fight off in an unfortunate SNAFU.  That being said, Chisora was coming on and I already had him ahead.  Scott probably would have gone on to lose anyway.
18) Johnathon Banks (7-38)
Last Fight: 6/22/2013- L (UD12) vs. #20 Seth Mitchell
Next Fight: Unknown
19) Denis Boytsov (7-216)
Last Fight: 6/15/2013- KO3 Alexander Nesterenko (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Boytsov has signed with Sauerland, and looks to make his debut under their banner in August or September.
20) Franklin Lawrence (7-23)
Last Fight: 1/25/2013- Mark Brown (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown

 

THE WEEK AHEAD: Hengyang, China plays host to a nice little fringe tilt between perennial borderline top 50 Samoan heavyweight Alex Leapai and former top 50 cruiserweight Felipe Romero of Mexico, who was rendered a journeyman by consecutive losses to Polish prospects Mateusz Masternak and Krzysztof Glowacki.

 

Much later the same night in Indio, California, #13 Deontay Wilder gets a showcase opportunity on Showbox against faded former contender Sergei Liakhovich.  Liakhovich is clearly not what he once was, as his devastating knockout against Robert Helenius was followed by a one-sided beating at the hands of unproven prospect Bryant Jennings and well over a year of inactivity.

Heavyweight: 2013, May 13-19

Posted in Heavyweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on May 13, 2013 by danboxing
Alex Leapai fought as scheduled in Brisbane on Thursday, but his undefeated novice opponent John Napari was replaced by an even weaker challenge in 2-4 Joe Lloyd, who lasted just 78 seconds before succumbing to a knockout.

 

No changes this week.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (Weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: Wladimir Klitschko (203-416-416)
Last Fight: 5/4/2013- TKO6 Francesco Pianeta
Next Fight: 8/31/2013- vs. #4 Alexander Povetkin
After an easy fight against Pianeta, Klitschko seems to have a big (but probably still easier than it might look on paper) defense against Povetkin.  He’ll get a big payday to travel to Moscow.  This is undoubtedly contingent on Povetkin beating Wawrzyk.
1) Vitali Klitschko (240-240-240)
Last Fight: 9/8/2012- TKO4 Manuel Charr (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
The WBC has officially ordered Vitali-Stiverne, and it sounds like it will happen.
2) Tyson Fury (4-95-95)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- KO7 #3 Steve Cunningham
Next Fight: Unknown
Fury is now suddenly the most proven heavyweight not named Klitschko, and will likely get a chance to add to his resume against Kubrat Pulev next, as an eliminator for Wlad in the IBF.
3) David Haye (4-44-44)
Last Fight: 7/14/2012- TKO5 #6 Dereck Chisora
Next Fight: 6/29/2013- vs. Manuel Charr (UNR)
Haye had some good fighters willing to fight him- including Eddie Chambers and possibly Kubrat Pulev.  The disappointment I feel at learning that he will instead fight borderline fringe contender Manuel Charr can not be overstated.
4) Alexander Povetkin (44-290-290)
Last Fight: 9/29/2012- TKO2 Hasim Rahman (UNR)
Next Fight: 5/17/2013- vs. Andrzej Wawrzyk (UNR)
Povetkin is set to fight mediocre-looking undefeated Polish prospect Andrzej Wawrzyk in Moscow, on the Lebedev-Jones undercard.  After that, he will almost certainly have a fight with Wlad on tap for late August.
5) Steve Cunningham (4-21-21)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- L (KO7) vs. #6 Tyson Fury
Next Fight: Unknown
Only time will tell where Cunningham goes form here.  His hopes for a title shot are dashed at least for awhile.  Perhaps a trilogy with Adamek would make sense at this point.
6Tomasz Adamek (4-160-160)
Last Fight: 12/22/2012- W (SD12)* vs. CW #4 Steve Cunningham (Robbery)
Next Fight: Unknown
Word is that Adamek will likely be fighting still relatively unproven Newark prospect Joe Hanks on June 14 in that town that they both currently call home.
7) Eddie Chambers (21-48-48)
Last Fight: 6/16/2012- L(UD12) vs. #3 Tomasz Adamek
Next Fight: Unknown
Chambers has hinted at negotiations with a fighter with an “animal name.”  Most likely he’s talking about Lateef Kayode.  That fight, if it gets made, could be at either heavyweight or cruiser.
8) Kubrat Pulev (21-54-131)
Last Fight: 9/29/2012- KO11 Alexander Ustinov (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
After negotiatings to fight David Haye failed, it now seems likely Pulev has got Tyson Fury next, for a likely shot at Wladimir Klitschko in early 2014.
9) Dereck Chisora (21-76-139)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- TKO9 Hector Avila (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
It was announced by Chisora’s team that he’d be fighting Deontay Wilder on June 15, but that fight was apparently dead before it was born, with Wilder’s camp concerned about his ability to go to England for the fight due to a pending assault charge.  It’s likely that Chisora will still fight on June 15, though.
10) Odlanier Solis (8-8-155)
Last Fight: 3/22/2013- UD12 Leif Larsen (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Solis’ promoter wants to get him back in the ring within 3 months after the Larsen fight.
11) Johnathon Banks (8-26)
Last Fight: 11/17/2012- TKO2 #11 Seth Mitchell
Next Fight: 6/22/2013- vs. Seth Mitchell (UNR)
The Mitchell rematch- postponed due to a broken thumb by Banks- has been reset for the Malignaggi-Broner undercard on June 22.
12) Bermane Stiverne (3-11)
Last Fight: 4/27/2013- UD12 #15 Chris Arreola
Next Fight: Unknown
Stiverne is hoping that Vitali doesn’t retire so that he can try and do the honors himself.  At this point he’d be a pretty credible opponent, too.
13) Tony Thompson (3-155)
Last Fight: 2/23/2013- TKO2 David Price (UNR)
Next Fight: 7/6/2013- vs. David Price (UNR)
After originally saying he’d only fight David Price in a rematch if Price came to the US, Thompson has instead agreed to fight in Price’s Liverpool backyard again.
14) Deontay Wilder (3-3)
Last Fight: 4/27/2013- TKO1 Audley Harrison (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
See Chisora’s notes, above.
15) Robert Helenius (3-155)
Last Fight: 3/23/2013- W*(UD10) vs. Michael Sprott (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Helenius’ team confirms another hand injury.  They say it will take 6 weeks to heal, despite rumors that it is more serious.
16) Alexander Dimitrenko (3-122)
Last Fight: 3/9/2013- UD8 Ivica Perkovic (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Dimitrenko’s future is in doubt after he struggled mightily to survive a heavy knockdown and outpoint typically inept journeyman Ivica Perkovic.
17) Vyacheslav Glazkov (11-21)
Last Fight: 2/23/2013- Draw* (SD10) vs. Malik Scott (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Glazkov got the benefit of the doubt in every close round from two of the judges against Scott.  It was just about as close to a robbery as you can get without me calling it that. 
18) Malik Scott (11-12)
Last Fight: 2/23/2013- Draw* (SD10) vs. #19 Vyacheslav Glazkov
Next Fight: Unknown
Scott is in Moscow at last check, sparring with Povetkin and Lebedev.
19) Denis Boytsov (3-204)
Last Fight: 2/15/2013- UD8 Samir Kurtagic (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Boytsov’s 2nd best win- over Robert Hawkins- is now over 5 years old, and he has slipped a few spots as a result.  He’s getting closer to obscurity with each passing month.
20) Franklin Lawrence (11-11)
Last Fight: 1/25/2013- Mark Brown (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Lawrence reportedly pulled out of a planned (and very good) crossroads fight with prospect Bryant Jennings.

 

THE WEEK AHEAD: Friday in New York, former Prizefighter Champion Tor Hamer looks to get back on track after quitting on his stool against Vyacheslav Glazkov in December.  He will be in with low-level journeyman Maurenzo Smith.

 

Saturday in Moscow, #4 Alexander Povetkin will stay busy against mediocre-looking undefeated prospect Andrzej Wawrzyk ahead of his anticipated Championship fight with Wlad, tentatively scheduled for August.

Heavyweight: 2013, May 6-12

Posted in Heavyweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on May 6, 2013 by danboxing
The Heavyweight Championship fight on Saturday in Mannheim went pretty much as you might expect.  Fringe contender Francesco Pianeta made a visible effort to land, if only in spurts, but he was predictably and vastly outclassed by Champion Wladimir Klitschko.  He would lunge in with a wide punch that occasionally landed- especially to the body- but honestly at no point did I see anything that I thought was remotely a threat to even Wlad’s weak chin that was apparent in years past, but which practically hasn’t been touched in 5 years.

 

Wow.  Actually the result was so totally expected that I almost forgot to tell you what it was- a 6th round TKO for Klitschko.  Wlad also dropped the Italian-born German once in each of the last 3 rounds, though I thought the knockdown in the 5th was largely caused by a push to the back of the neck or head.

 

On the undercard, extremely promising Cuban prospect Mike Perez cruised to an easy 10 round decision over high-level journeyman Travis Walker.  After about 16 months on the shelf, it’s entirely sure that Perez- who may have been fairly expected to stop Walker- was at least in part just trying to get some rounds in. 

 

No changes this week.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (Weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: Wladimir Klitschko (202-415-415)
Last Fight: 5/4/2013- TKO6 Francesco Pianeta
Next Fight: 8/31/2013- vs. #4 Alexander Povetkin
After an easy fight against Pianeta, Klitschko seems to have a big (but probably still easier than it might look on paper) defense against Povetkin.  He’ll get a big payday to travel to Moscow.  This is undoubtedly contingent on Povetkin beating Wawrzyk.
1) Vitali Klitschko (239-239-239)
Last Fight: 9/8/2012- TKO4 Manuel Charr (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
The WBC has officially ordered Vitali-Stiverne, and it sounds like it will happen.
2) Tyson Fury (3-94-94)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- KO7 #3 Steve Cunningham
Next Fight: Unknown
Fury is now suddenly the most proven heavyweight not named Klitschko, and will likely get a chance to add to his resume against Kubrat Pulev next, as an eliminator for Wlad in the IBF.
3) David Haye (3-43-43)
Last Fight: 7/14/2012- TKO5 #6 Dereck Chisora
Next Fight: 6/29/2013- vs. Manuel Charr (UNR)
Haye had some good fighters willing to fight him- including Eddie Chambers and possibly Kubrat Pulev.  The disappointment I feel at learning that he will instead fight borderline fringe contender Manuel Charr can not be overstated.
4) Alexander Povetkin (43-289-289)
Last Fight: 9/29/2012- TKO2 Hasim Rahman (UNR)
Next Fight: 5/17/2013- vs. Andrzej Wawrzyk (UNR)
Povetkin is set to fight mediocre-looking undefeated Polish prospect Andrzej Wawrzyk in Moscow, on the Lebedev-Jones undercard.  After that, he will almost certainly have a fight with Wlad on tap for late August.
5) Steve Cunningham (3-20-20)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- L (KO7) vs. #6 Tyson Fury
Next Fight: Unknown
Only time will tell where Cunningham goes form here.  His hopes for a title shot are dashed at least for awhile.  Perhaps a trilogy with Adamek would make sense at this point.
6Tomasz Adamek (3-159-159)
Last Fight: 12/22/2012- W (SD12)* vs. CW #4 Steve Cunningham (Robbery)
Next Fight: Unknown
Word is that Adamek will likely be fighting still relatively unproven Newark prospect Joe Hanks on June 14 in that town that they both currently call home.
7) Eddie Chambers (20-47-47)
Last Fight: 6/16/2012- L(UD12) vs. #3 Tomasz Adamek
Next Fight: Unknown
Chambers seems willing to fight anyone at heavyweight or cruiserweight, but you can’t have a fight with just one guy willing.
8) Kubrat Pulev (20-53-130)
Last Fight: 9/29/2012- KO11 Alexander Ustinov (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
After negotiatings to fight David Haye failed, it now seems likely Pulev has got Tyson Fury next, for a likely shot at Wladimir Klitschko in early 2014.
9) Dereck Chisora (20-75-138)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- TKO9 Hector Avila (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Chisora put on a world-class snoozer against Avila, but still managed to bag a late stoppage.
10) Odlanier Solis (7-7-154)
Last Fight: 3/22/2013- UD12 Leif Larsen (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Solis’ promoter wants to get him back in the ring within 3 months after the Larsen fight.
11) Johnathon Banks (7-25)
Last Fight: 11/17/2012- TKO2 #11 Seth Mitchell
Next Fight: 6/22/2013- vs. Seth Mitchell (UNR)
The Mitchell rematch- postponed due to a broken thumb by Banks- has been reset for the Malignaggi-Broner undercard on June 22.
12) Bermane Stiverne (2-10)
Last Fight: 4/27/2013- UD12 #15 Chris Arreola
Next Fight: Unknown
Stiverne is hoping that Vitali doesn’t retire so that he can try and do the honors himself.  At this point he’d be a pretty credible opponent, too.
13) Tony Thompson (2-154)
Last Fight: 2/23/2013- TKO2 David Price (UNR)
Next Fight: 7/6/2013- vs. David Price (UNR)
After originally saying he’d only fight David Price in a rematch if Price came to the US, Thompson has instead agreed to fight in Price’s Liverpool backyard again.
14) Deontay Wilder (2-2)
Last Fight: 4/27/2013- TKO1 Audley Harrison (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Wilder wants a crack at Fury next, but the Brit is likely to go for Pulev instead, since the winner gets Wlad.
15) Robert Helenius (2-154)
Last Fight: 3/23/2013- W*(UD10) vs. Michael Sprott (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Helenius’ team confirms another hand injury.  They say it will take 6 weeks to heal, despite rumors that it is more serious.
16) Alexander Dimitrenko (2-121)
Last Fight: 3/9/2013- UD8 Ivica Perkovic (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Dimitrenko’s future is in doubt after he struggled mightily to survive a heavy knockdown and outpoint typically inept journeyman Ivica Perkovic.
17) Vyacheslav Glazkov (10-20)
Last Fight: 2/23/2013- Draw* (SD10) vs. Malik Scott (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Glazkov got the benefit of the doubt in every close round from two of the judges against Scott.  It was just about as close to a robbery as you can get without me calling it that. 
18) Malik Scott (10-11)
Last Fight: 2/23/2013- Draw* (SD10) vs. #19 Vyacheslav Glazkov
Next Fight: Unknown
Scott is in Moscow at last check, sparring with Povetkin and Lebedev.
19) Denis Boytsov (2-203)
Last Fight: 2/15/2013- UD8 Samir Kurtagic (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Boytsov’s 2nd best win- over Robert Hawkins- is now over 5 years old, and he has slipped a few spots as a result.  He’s getting closer to obscurity with each passing month.
20) Franklin Lawrence (10-10)
Last Fight: 1/25/2013- Mark Brown (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Lawrence reportedly pulled out of a planned (and very good) crossroads fight with prospect Bryant Jennings.

 

THE WEEK AHEAD: The only fight even arguably worth mentioning in the division this week takes place in Brisbane, Australia on Thursday.  Borderline top-50 gatekeeper Alex Leapai will look to deliver a dose of reality to undefeated Ghanaian prospect John Napari.  Napari has only twice fought an opponent with even a single professional win, and both of those guys’ winning percentages were .333 or under.  With his opponents’ combined record at 8-42 by my count, he may as well be making his pro debut against Leapai, and that’s a tall order.
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