Light Heavyweight: 2011, Oct 17-23

What a waste of Pay per View money!  Bernard Hopkins’ first defense of his most recent Light Heavyweight Title reign was a abortive mess, as he climbed onto a dipping Chad Dawson’s back following a missed punch late in the 2nd round, and was thrown off to the effect of an apparently dislocated shoulder, effectively ending the fight.  But that’s not where the outrage ended.  Referee Pat Russell, who I can only presume believed Hopkins was faking, declared the fight a TKO- ruling in effect that throwing Hopkins to the ground did not constitute even an accidental foul by Dawson.  But I don’t deal in such nonsense on this site.  Rest assured that the fight is a no contest and will be treated as such here.  I suspect and hope that the California Commission will come to the same conclusion when they meet in December, as well.  Hopkins remains the Champion.  Unfortunately, Dawson stated emphatically (in a state of anger and a mistaken belief that he was now the Champion) that he wants Pascal next.


In other news, #4 Nathan Cleverly had all he could handle in bitter rival Tony Bellew.  I watched the fight on Youtube- slight blurriness and all.  Based on what I saw, however, the draw that one judge had for Cleverly seemed like a best-case scenario among legitimate outcomes.  The other cards seemed incredible to me, on which Cleverly won 117-112 and 116-113.  Obviously British judges lack the hesitancy to award even rounds that is hammered into their American counterparts.  This appears to be a “Champion’s Decision” to me, although again- only based on a YouTube viewing.  Nevertheless, I’m going to treat this fight as a draw.  Even if I was off by a round or two to the detriment of Cleverly, I still think a draw would be as good a result as any other.  By the way, the fight was a pretty good scrap, regardless of who did or didn’t win.


In much less important news, Argentine prospect Roberto Feliciano Bolonti stopped weak Brazilian journeyman Jose Hilton Dos Santos in the 4th round in Argentina.


Hopkins and Dawson both retain their current positions in the rankings after what amounted to a non-event.  Tony Bellew, who had been rated a few months ago, storms back into the rankings on the strength of…a loss…but a loss that should have probably been a win or at least a draw.  He debuts at #7, just behind Karo Murat who actually did score an official draw against Gabriel Campillo a couple weeks ago.  Cleverly again swaps places with Campillo, whom he replaced at #4 after the Murat draw.  Bellew’s return to the rankings forces down everyone rated #7 and below last week, including Dmitri Sukhotski (#10 last week)- who exits the top 10 after a 21-week run- and Marcus Johnson (#20 last week) who exits the rankings after stringing together 10 consecutive weeks since his return following Glen Johnson’s ouster.


For comparison, here are the current Ring Magazine Ratings:
Champ: Bernard Hopkins
1) Jean Pascal
2) Tavoris Cloud
3) Chad Dawson
4) Nathan Cleverly
5) Adrian Diaconu
6) Zsolt Erdei
7) Beibut Shumenov
8) Karo Murat
9) Gabriel Campillo
10) Ismayl Sillakh


Dan’s Top 20
Champ: Bernard Hopkins (22-280-280)
Last Fight: 10/15/2011- NC* vs. #2 Chad Dawson
Next Fight: Unknown
With any luck, the California Commission will agree with me that his “loss” to Dawson was a no contest all the way.  There’s no way anybody but Hopkins is the Champion right now.
1) Jean Pascal (22-122-122)
Last Fight: 5/21/2011- L(UD12) vs. #1 Bernard Hopkins
Next Fight: Unknown
Dawson wants Pascal, but a Dawson-Hopkins rematch may supersede that before it’s all said and done.
2) Chad Dawson (44-281-281)
Last Fight: 10/15/2011- NC* vs. Champ Bernard Hopkins
Next Fight: Unknown
Dawson has got to be frustrated that he finally got a fight with Hopkins only to see it end the way it did.  If he thinks he’s the Champ, though, he’s deluding himself.
3) Tavoris Cloud (44-112-112)
Last Fight: 6/25/2011- TKO8 #8 Yusaf Mack
Next Fight: Unknown
Cloud was deep in discussions for an excellent fight with Pascal, but they failed.
4) Gabriel Campillo (1-69-69)
Last Fight: 10/1/2011- Draw (SD12) vs. #14 Karo Murat
Next Fight: Unknown
Campillo had my sympathy after being robbed against Shumenov, but hasn’t helped his case with a long stretch of inactivity against good fighters followed by a back-and-forth draw with Murat.
5) Nathan Cleverly (1-89-89)
Last Fight: 10/15/2011- W*(MD12) vs. Tony Bellew (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
I personally think even a draw was pretty generous in his fight with Bellew.  The majority decision win was way out of line, in my opinion.
6) Karo Murat (3-3-24)
Last Fight: 10/1/2011- Draw (SD12) vs. #4 Gabriel Campillo
Next Fight: Unknown
I never thought this would happen, but I now rate the long-overrated Murat even higher than does Ring Magazine.
7) Tony Bellew (1-1-1)
Last Fight: 10/15/2011- L*(MD12) vs. #4 Nathan Cleverly
Next Fight: Unknown
Deserved better than a majority decision loss against Cleverly.  I thought he won the fight or deserved, at worst, a draw.
8) Eduard Gutknecht (1-24-24)
Last Fight: 7/16/2011- UD12 Lorenzo Di Giacomo (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Ho-hum victory over Di Giacomo.  Hopefully he steps back up soon.
9) Beibut Shumenov (1-65-69)
Last Fight: 7/29/2011- TKO9 Danny Santiago (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
10) Yusaf Mack (1-33-69)
Last Fight: 6/25/2011- L(TKO8) vs. #3 Tavoris Cloud
Next Fight: Unknown
Mack looks a little too small to compete with the top guys at this weight, but still has a good enough resume to avoid dropping too far.
11) Dmitri Sukhotski (1-51)
Last Fight: 10/8/2011- TKO2 Nadjib Mohammedi (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
12) Adrian Diaconu (1-232)
Last Fight: 5/21/2011- L(UD12) vs. #2 Chad Dawson
Next Fight: Unknown
A quality fighter, Diaconu is nevertheless slipping in the rankings simply because he never wins against anyone above the journeyman level.  He ought to try and find some kind of mid-range fringe contender just to get a decent win, because fighting journeymen or top contenders isn’t working out for him.
13) Ismayl Sillakh (1-40)
Last Fight: 5/21/2011- TKO3 Hamza Wandera (UNR) (as CW)
Next Fight: 11/4/2011- vs. Unknown Opponent
Sillakh is slated to fight in Moscow on November 4, opponent to be announced.
14) Zsolt Erdei (1-48)
Last Fight: 6/4/2011- KO6 Byron Mitchell (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
There is some buzz at present about a potential fight with Pascal.
15) Danny McIntosh (1-69)
Last Fight: 5/7/2011- L(TKO8) vs. Eduard Gutknecht (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Significantly diminished by his loss to Gutknecht, but still has a better win in Thierry Karl than the two guys rated immediately below him: Karo Murat and…well…Thierry Karl.
16) Yordanis Despaigne (1-12)
Last Fight: 7/29/2011- W(DQ5) vs. Edison Miranda (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
There was talk immediately after the Miranda fight of a rematch taking place, but no new news on that.
17) Jesus Gonzales (1-15)
Last Fight: 7/8/2011- UD12 Francisco Sierra (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
His present and future are probably both at 168, but he beat a good enough light heavyweight to earn this ranking, nevertheless.
18) Thierry Karl (1-69)
Last Fight: 1/22/2011- L (TKO11) vs. #17 Danny McIntosh
Next Fight: Unknown
Will probably see a long layoff and a few tune-ups after being stopped by McIntosh.  Karl might be done as a major contender.
19) Luis Garcia (1-40)
Last Fight: 11/6/2010- TKO2 Byron Mitchell (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
20) Dyah Davis (1-30)
Last Fight: 4/8/2011- UD10* Marcus Johnson (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Pulled off a bit of an upset in beating hot prospect Marcus Johnson on ShoBox.  Seems to be a magnet for controversial scoring, though, as he’s now been on both the good and bad side of at least debatable scorecards in his last two fights.


The Week Ahead:  Gatekeeper Otis Griffin and one-loss prospect Shawn Hawk square off in Idaho on Thursday.  Undefeated (with a little help against Aaron Pryor from the ref and judges) prospect Edwin Rodriguez- probably a super middleweight in reality- takes on fellow undefeated Will Rosinsky on ShoBox the following night in Connecticut.  #20 Dyah Davis will fight journeyman/gatekeeper Darnell Boone on the non-televised undercard, but it’s not clear if it’s at 175 or 168.   Boone’s overall record isn’t that great, but he does own a stoppage victory over very solid prospect Adonis Stevenson last year.

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