Heavyweight: 2010, July 19-25

I shuffled the rankings a little bit between 13-15 because I simply re-thought them this week.  As for actual in-ring action, I think Monte Barrett’s draw- which by all accounts should have been a win- against overrated David Tua who was still viewed as a contender by fans and some experts may have been enough to earn him a rating or at least some consideration except that his retirement became effective upon the final bell.  If he happens to go back on his plan to retire and instead schedules a fight, I will give him the consideration he earned on Saturday.
For Comparison, here are the Current Ring Magazine Heavyweight Rankings:
Champ: Wladimir Klitschko
1) Vitali Klitschko
2) David Haye
3) Alexander Povetkin
4) Tomasz Adamek
5) Ruslan Chagaev
6) Eddie Chambers
7) Denis Boytsov
8 ) Nikolai Valuev
9) Alexander Dimitrenko
10) Chris Arreola

Dan’s Top 20
Champ: Wladimir Klitschko (56-269-269)
Last Fight: 3/20/2010- KO12 Eddie Chambers
Next Fight: 9/11/2010 vs. #6 Samuel Peter
Klitschko-Povetkin is off because, essentially, Povetkin knew he would lose and chose not to do so.  Instead, we’ll apparently get a slightly less prestigious but perhaps more intriguing match between Klitschko and my #6 Sam Peter, who gave him hell in their first match years ago.  Should we expect Peter to score knockdowns again?  Probably not, but for once Wlad is fighting a guy who we can at least imagine putting him down.  I, for one, am looking forward to this fight.
1) Vitali Klitschko (93-93-93)
Last Fight: 5/29/2010- KO10 Albert Sosnowski
Next Fight: Unknown
Apparently Shannon Briggs- who, to break one news story and then state the obvious, is neither retired nor any damn good- is now a more likely opponent than Valuev.  Stay tuned.
2) David Haye (16-70-70)
Last Fight: 4/3/2010- TKO9 John Ruiz
Next Fight: Unknown
Harrison-Haye unfortunately still looks like a good bet.
3) Alexander Povetkin (16-143-143)
Last Fight: 3/13/2010- TKO5 Javier Mora
Next Fight: Unknown
Teddy Atlas might have saved him a beating by pulling him from their scheduled 9/11 matchup, but he certainly didn’t make a lot of friends in doing so.  Technically the fight wasn’t finalized, but it sure looked that way from the outside.
4) Eddie Chambers (8-68-68)
Last Fight: 3/20/2010- L(KO12) vs. Wladimir Klitschko
Next Fight: Unknown
Nothing seems imminent, but there are whispers that he might move down to cruiserweight.  He’d be a beast there.
5) Ruslan Chagaev (9-192-192)
Last Fight: 5/22/2010- UD12 Kali Meehan
Next Fight: Unknown
6) Samuel Peter (8-8-8)
Last Fight: 3/12/2010- TKO2 Nagy Aguilera
Next Fight: 9/11/2010- vs. Champ Wladimir Klitschko
Peter apparently picked a good time to return to contention, as he now gets his first crack at a true World Championship, and against a guy he has already dropped multiple times, no less.
7) Nikolai Valuev (8-240-240)
Last Fight: 11/7/2009- L(MD12) vs. David Haye
Next Fight: Unknown
Vitali says his $1.5 million offer to make a fight with the giant is only going to get lower.  I don’t know what Valuev is waiting for.  This is his last, best (albeit slim) hope to reach the pinnacle of the division, and even if he loses, he’ll have a lot of cash money with which to wipe away the tears.
8 ) Tony Thompson (8-8-8)
Last Fight: 4/16/2010- TKO4 Owen Beck
Next Fight: Unknown
A late-breaking rotator cuff tear derailed his stay-busy fight against Friday Ahunanya on the Ward-Green undercard.  Here’s hoping he comes back looking for a better challenge and a late-career push for another title shot.
9) Juan Carlos Gomez (8-8-8)
Last Fight: 6/4/2010- UD8 Oezcan Cetinkaya
Next Fight: Unknown
Gomez this week changed promotional companies and is now signed with German powerhouse Universum.
10) Tomasz Adamek (8-13-13)
Last Fight: 4/24/2010- MD12 Chris Arreola
Next Fight: 8/21/2010- vs. Michael Grant (UNR)
Of all the fights Adamek could have taken, Michael Grant is not the sexiest matchup.
11) Chris Arreola (8-70)
Last Fight: 4/24/2010- L(MD12) vs. Tomasz Adamek
Next Fight: 8/13/2010- vs. Manuel Quezada
Just scheduled a stay-busy/rebound fight against Manuel Quezada, a former gatekeeper who probably isn’t even that anymore after a loss to Jason Gavern.  It’s good that he’s staying busy- expect him to fight another contender next.
12) Denis Boytsov (8-57)
Last Fight: 1/9/2010- KO2 Kevin Montiy
Next Fight: Unknown
13) Ray Austin (1-8)
Last Fight: 10/31/2009- TKO4 DaVarryl Williamson
Next Fight: Unknown
After reexamining the rankings, I noticed that his last major win was the same month as Dimitrenko’s, and that it was a better win (a faded but still halfway credible Andrew Golota).  His resume is thin, but he’s still proven marginally more than has Dimitrenko so far.
14) Robert Helenius (1-8)
Last Fight: 3/26/2010- UD8 Gbenga Oloukun
Next Fight: 8/21/2010 vs. Gregory Tony (UNR)
Another fighter affected by my recent re-examination, Helenius has been much more active recently, and while his two major wins- Bidenko and Brewster- were marginally less impressive than Dimitrenko’s, they were much more recent.
15) Alexander Dimitrenko (1-88)
Last Fight: 7/4/2010- L(MD12) vs. Eddie Chambers
Next Fight: 7/30/2010 vs. Yaroslav Zavorotnyi (UNR)
Only a week after the official announcement of a pretty decent fight against Denis Bakhtov, Bakhtov has pulled out due to injury and will be replaced for the July 30 date with Dimitrenko’s fellow tall Ukrainian Yaroslav Zavorotnyi, who ranks no better than a good solid journeyman, in what looks like a mismatch on paper.  While not Dimitrenko’s fault, the replacement opponent is a disappointment for a young fighter who has been very inactive and could really use a quality win.  Dimitrenko slides 2 spots based on my having re-examined the fighter’s records- a re-examination in which the Ukrainian’s inactivity plays a key role.
16) Francesco Pianeta (8-8)
Last Fight: 12/5/2009- UD8 Evgeny Orlov
Next Fight: Unknown
17) Odlanier Solis (8-8)
Last Fight: 3/20/2010- RTD3 Carl Davis Drumond
Next Fight: Unknown
With almost no concrete pro accomplishments, he’s already calling out the Klitschkos.  A little ambitious, aren’t we?
18) Jean Marc Mormeck (8-8)
Last Fight: 5/6/2010- UD10 Fres Oquendo
Next Fight: Unknown
19) Timur Ibragimov (4-4)
Last Fight: 6/15/2010- UD12 Oliver McCall (UNR)
Next Fight: 8/24/2010- vs. Gurcharan Singh (UNR)
Admirably staying busy, Ibragimov will now fight Indian heavyweight (yes, they do exist) Gurcharan Singh in late-August from Hollywood, Florida.  The undefeated Singh, originally from Punjab and based in New Jersey, was on the cusp of becoming a notable prospect after moving to 17-0 in June 2004 before taking 3 1/2 years off for some reason.  Singh is hardly on the radar today, but you never can tell what an undefeated fighter has up his sleeve.  Singh was also a 2000 Olympian at light heavyweight.
20) Sam Sexton (5-8)
Last Fight: 11/6/2009- RTD6 Martin Rogan
Next Fight: 9/18/2010- vs. Derek Chisora (UNR)
Sexton is now scheduled to try and avenge his lone career loss against Derek Chisora for the British Boxing Board of Control’s British Heavyweight Title on the same night as Wlad takes on Povetkin.  With a win, Sexton should be able to secure himself a much stronger foothold in the top 20, while a Chisora victory would certainly earn him a spot in the rankings.

THE WEEK AHEAD: Nothing of note this week.

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