Heavyweight: 2011, Dec 12-18

In this week’s most important fight, Seth Mitchell- usually considered America’s top heavyweight prospect- lived up to his billing by comprehensively destroying the normally very capable #19 Timur Ibragimov in Washington, D.C.  Mitchell did the job with not only power (of which he showed plenty) but also a level of boxing skill you might not expect from a guy that didn’t start fighting until his 20s, and which is largely lacking in all but the very top contenders in the division. 


In other action, Samoan fringe contender Alex Leapai annihilated totally overwhelmed journeyman Troy Weida on Thursday in Australia, forcing a first round stoppage.  The next night in Rhode Island, gatekeeper Jason Estrada shut out journeyman Joseph Rabotte over 8 rounds. 


Mitchell makes his debut in the ratings on the strength of the emphatic win over a ranked opponent, landing ahead of Alexander Dimitrenko at #11.  Ibragimov, having lost to an unranked opponent, falls from the rankings. Everybody rated #11-18 last week falls one spot each to make room for Mitchell.


For Comparison, here are the Current Ring Magazine Heavyweight Rankings:
Champ: Wladimir Klitschko
1) Vitali Klitschko
2) Alexander Povetkin
3) Tomasz Adamek
4) Eddie Chambers
5) Alexander Dimitrenko
6) Robert Helenius
7) Denis Boystov
8) Ruslan Chagaev
9) Chris Arreola
10) Kubrat Pulev


Dan’s Top 20 (Weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: Wladimir Klitschko (129-342-342)
Last Fight: 7/2/2011- UD12 #2 David Haye
Next Fight: 3/3/2011- vs. #15 Jean Marc Mormeck
Wlad had surgery to remove a kidney stone on the 5th and quite understandably wasn’t going to be ready to fight on the 10th.  It appears that the fight is only rescheduled and will be held March 3, but it’s not entirely clear yet that Mormeck has accepted the offer to reschedule.
1) Vitali Klitschko (166-166-166)
Last Fight: 9/10/2011- TKO10 #6 Tomasz Adamek
Next Fight: 2/18/2011- vs. #6 Dereck Chisora
After flirting with Haye and Dimitrenko, Vitali announced a fight with the man of the hour- recently robbed Dereck Chisora.  Word is he’ll fight David Haye in a stadium in the summer and then likely retire.
2) Alexander Povetkin (16-216-216)
Last Fight: 12/3/2011- KO8 #20 Cedric Boswell
Next Fight: Unknown
Povetkin turned in a tedious but ultimately successful effort against Boswell.  At the post-fight press conference, cruiserweight contender Marco Huck challenged him and Povetkin and trainer Teddy Atlas eagerly accepted.  But now the WBA has named Hasim Rahman the mandatory contender to Povetkin’s made-up belt, so we’ll see how that situation pans out.  Neither matchup is particularly compelling for a fighter of Povetkin’s stature.  Povetkin prefers Tyson Fury over Rahman, and that at least speaks well of him.
3) Eddie Chambers (9-141-141)
Last Fight: 2/11/2011- UD12 Derric Rossy (UNR)
Next Fight: 1/21/2012- vs. Sergei Liakhovich (UNR)
After recovering from a back injury that nixed his scheduled eliminator with Tony Thompson, Chambers is now set to headline the first installment of Main Events’ new Versus network show against house fighter Sergei Liakhovich.
4) Tomasz Adamek (2-86-86)
Last Fight: 9/10/2011- L (TKO10) vs. #1 Vitali Klitschko
Next Fight: Unknown
Chris Arreola wants to fight him, but Adamek is talking about a rematch with Andrew Golota.  Are you f’ing kidding me???
5) Tyson Fury (2-21-21)
Last Fight: 11/12/2011- TKO3 Neven Pajkic (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Fury is already working on his next fight, which may be March 17 at Madison Square Garden for his US debut.  Alexander Povetkin and Magomed Abdusalamov appear to be possible opponents.
6) Dereck Chisora (2-2-65)
Last Fight: 12/3/2011- L*(SD12) vs. #4 Robert Helenius (Robbery)
Next Fight: 2/18/2012- vs. #1 Vitali Klitschko
Despite being robbed, Chisora will get a chance to capitalize on his winning performance against Helenius by fighting #1 contender Vitali Klitschkho in February.
7) Robert Helenius (2-37-81)
Last Fight: 12/3/2011- W*(SD12) vs. #18 Dereck Chisora (Robbery)
Next Fight: Unknown
Helenius looked like he always does against Chisora- completely horrible.  The only difference is that he didn’t suddenly stop his man as per usual.  In his defense, it appears that he sustained a hairline fracture in his hand early in the bout.
8) Ruslan Chagaev (2-265-265)
Last Fight: 8/27/2011- L (UD12) vs. #5 Alexander Povetkin
Next Fight: 1/21/2011- vs. Unknown Opponent
Chagaev has a fight scheduled against an opponent to be announced in January.
9) Tony Thompson (2-81-81)
Last Fight: 5/27/2011- TKO3 Maurice Harris (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Thompson has been elevated to a spot as the IBF’s mandatory contender without the need for an eliminator against Chambers, who withdrew with a back injury.  This most likely means he won’t be fighting Chambers as originally planned.
10) Odlanier Solis (2-52-81)
Last Fight: 3/19/2011- L (TKO1) vs. #1 Vitali Klitschko
Next Fight: Unknown
Solis appears to still be recovering from multiple knee surgeries.
11) Seth Mitchell (1-1)
Last Fight: 12/10/2011- TKO2 #19 Timur Ibragimov
Next Fight: Unknown
Announced that he’s for real in a big way by destroying the normally durable Ibragimov.  He says he’ll be ready for a Klitschko in 3 or 4 fights.
12) Alexander Dimitrenko (1-48)
Last Fight: 9/24/2011- UD12 Michael Sprott (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Appeared to have been bumped out of his EBU mandatory spot in favor of a Chisora rematch, but appeared to be in the running for a fight with Vitali in February.  Instead, it is Chisora that will fight Klitschko, while Dimitrenko is likely back at the top of the list of contenders for Helenius’ illegitimate European belt.
13) Chris Arreola (1-143)
Last Fight: 11/5/2011- TKO3 Raphael Butler (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Arreola wants to fight Wlad and/or Adamek in the near future.
14) Denis Boytsov (1-130)
Last Fight: 9/24/2011- TKO6 Matthew Greer (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
15) Jean Marc Mormeck (1-81)
Last Fight: 12/2/2010- SD12 #19 Timur Ibragimov
Next Fight: 3/3/2012- vs. Champ Wladimir Klitschko
See Klitschko’s comments, above.
16) Bermane Stiverne (1-25)
Last Fight: 6/25/2011- TKO10 #20 Ray Austin
Next Fight: Unknown
Despite a still-thin resume, Stiverne has somehow been maneuvered into the position of being Vitali Klitschko’s WBC mandatory challenger.
17) Samuel Peter (1-81)
Last Fight: 4/2/2011- L(KO9) vs. #16 Robert Helenius
Next Fight: Unknown
It appeared that Peter would be fighting Vyacheslav Glazkov, but apparently it was never a done deal.
18) Kubrat Pulev (1-57)
Last Fight: 10/22/2011- UD12 Travis Walker (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
19) Franklin Lawrence (1-29)
Last Fight: 10/28/2011- TKO2 Raymond Ochieng (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
20) Cedric Boswell (9-9)
Last Fight: 12/3/2011- L(KO8) vs. #2 Alexander Povetkin
Next Fight: Unknown
Boswell was the most comatose participant in a comatose fight with Alexander Povetkin prior to being rendered semi-conscious by Povetkin in the 8th.  In this case, semi-conscious is a downgrade from comatose…don’t ask how that works.


THE WEEK AHEAD: Just one mildly notable fight this week: on the Ward-Froch undercard in Atlantic City on Saturday, Tongan fringe prospect Bowie Tupou will fight journeyman Donnell Holmes.

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