Light Heavyweight: 2011, Oct 24-30

Thursday night in Idaho, one-loss prospect Shawn Hawk won a split decision over gatekeeper Otis Griffin.  It wasn’t a robbery, but what it was was both a very close fight and example of poor judging all-around.  Don’t get me wrong- it was a split decision kind of fight.  There were a lot of close rounds.  I scored the fight 96-93 Griffin, but don’t think anything between 96-93 Hawk and 97-92 Griffin would have been totally out of line.  Unfortunately for the judges, each of them had the fight even wider than that for their respective favorite.  I mean it’s hard for me to be too upset when I think a SD win for Hawk is a reasonable result, but I am still a bit upset because although in this case a poor job by 3 judges yielded a satisfactory result, if we overlook this, then we don’t really have the same moral standing to complain when the same judges do terribly in a more uniform fashion.  Tom Scher and Ray Kerwick both went for Hawk by a 97-92 margin.  Gus Hernandez had a respectable 4-point margin in favor of Griffin, but got to that point by apparently awarding 3 10-10 rounds to arrive at his 98-94 card, although it could be that he awarded 2 even rounds and did not give Griffin an extra point for a knockdown he scored in round 7.  I’m not sure which I would disagree with more.  Even rounds are a cardinal sin among American boxing judges, and Hernandez ought to know that.  If he can’t pull the trigger on a round 3 times in a 10-round fight, he ought to give back 30% of his paycheck, because he wasn’t doing what he was paid to do.

 

In an even worse scoring debacle in Connecticut, Will Rosinsky came up on the short end of the scorecards against Edwin Rodriguez.  As hyperbolic as it sounds, it now seems pretty possible that Rodriguez’ team pays off officials.  There is really no other way to explain the atrocities we’re getting used to seeing when he fights.  To recap: early in the year on Friday Night Fights, Aaron Pryor Jr appeared to win a close decision against Rodriguez, but all cards had Rodriguez comfortably head, including Richard Green, who gave Rodriguez at least one round that was won by Pryor without serious doubt.  Referee Sam Burgos also took a completely unwarranted point from Pryor in the fight.  Then last Friday, Will Rosinsky gave Rodriguez all he could handle and appeared to me to deserve a narrow win in a fight that admittedly had a lot of close rounds.  But Rosinsky clearly won at least 2 of those rounds.  The judges?  100-90, across the board, all for Rodriguez.  Why they even bothered to show up at ringside is beyond me.  They could have mailed in their scorecards a week in advance.  I can’t even give these guys enough credit to assume they’re incompetent in this case.  I can’t imagine the incompetence being this uniform.  It’s hard for me to imagine all the judges agreeing on the same incompetent scores without some kind of monetary inducement being involved.  So if, unlike them, you’re actually keeping score, here are the names: Clark Sammartino, Glen Feldman, and Peter Hary.  There should be an investigation.

 

Dyah Davis was in action on the Rodriguez-Rosinsky non-televised undercard, in just a 6-rounder.  Davis is prone to controversial scoring, but apparently managed to avoid that this time- if only narrowly.  Fighting quality journeyman Darnell Boone, Davis scored a unanimous decision, though the cards were not as convincing as one might have liked.  He lost a round on one card and two on the other two.  Still, it’s not the worst indictment of Davis, since Adonis Stevenson is still considered a top prospect after being knocked out by Boone last year.

 

While interesting, none of these fights will affect the rankings this week.

 

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 (23-281-281)
Last Fight: 10/15/2011- NC* vs. #2 Chad Dawson
Next Fight: Unknown
The first official blow against Pat Russell’s bad TKO decision has been struck, as the WBC announced that its title would stay with Hopkins despite the call.
1) Jean Pascal (23-123-123)
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 (45-282-282)
Last Fight: 10/15/2011- NC* vs. Champ Bernard Hopkins
Next Fight: Unknown
See Hopkins’ notes, above.
3) Tavoris Cloud (45-113-113)
Last Fight: 6/25/2011- TKO8 #8 Yusaf Mack
Next Fight: Unknown
There is currently talk of a New Year’s Eve showdown with Zsolt Erdei.
4) Gabriel Campillo (2-70-70)
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 (2-90-90)
Last Fight: 10/15/2011- W*(MD12) vs. Tony Bellew (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Cleverly says he had a fractured rib entering his fight with Bellew.
6) Karo Murat (4-4-25)
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 (2-2-2)
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 (2-25-25)
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 (2-66-70)
Last Fight: 7/29/2011- TKO9 Danny Santiago (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
10) Yusaf Mack (2-34-70)
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 (2-52)
Last Fight: 10/8/2011- TKO2 Nadjib Mohammedi (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
12) Adrian Diaconu (2-233)
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 (2-41)
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 (2-49)
Last Fight: 6/4/2011- KO6 Byron Mitchell (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
See Cloud’s notes, above.
15) Danny McIntosh (2-70)
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 (2-13)
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 (2-16)
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 (2-70)
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 (2-41)
Last Fight: 11/6/2010- TKO2 Byron Mitchell (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
20) Dyah Davis (2-31)
Last Fight: 10/21/2011- UD6 Darnell Boone (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown

 

The Week Ahead:  There’s nothing going on in the division this week.

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