Middleweight: 2011, Oct 3-9

Champion Sergio Martinez defended his title with a workmanlike effort against #20 Darren Barker.  Martinez was certainly not sharp.  He didn’t give the angles we’re used to seeing from him.  I had him up by 4 points after 10 rounds, but virtually all of the rounds had been close.  He was, however, steadily wearing Barker down when a mostly-blocked punch to the ear surprisingly robbed Barker of his equilibrium and led to a knockout win for Maravilla. 

 

A few hours earlier in Germany, #9 Grzegorz Proksa put on a show against #4 Sebastian Sylvester in Germany.  Proksa was unorthodox, clever, fast, and powerful.  His defense was awkward and effective, and he was giving the German contender a comprehensive beating before the fight was stopped on cuts following round 3. 

 

On the Martinez-Barker undercard, Bryan Vera and Andy Lee rematched, but that fight- advertised as a middleweight fight- was actually contested well into the Super Middleweight division and has been fully treated there.

 

Martinez and Barker both stay put in the rankings.  Proksa moves up to claim the #2 spot.  It was a somewhat close call between him and Sturm, but ultimately Sturm’s performance- which was clearly worthy of either a loss or a draw- against Macklin (who was rated #11 at the time) allows Proksa to get the nod, even though Sturm’s resume is filled with top 5 and top 10 victims from a couple years back or so.  Sylvester, coming off his second consecutive loss, falls to #7.  Sturm and Macklin are bumped down a spot each to make way for Proksa, as are Chavez and Rubio.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (Weeks in Current Position-Weeks in Top 10 if applicable-Weeks in Top 20)
Champ: Sergio Martinez (77-77-77)
Last Fight: 10/1/2011- KO11 #20 Darren Barker
Next Fight: Unknown
Macklin and Lee both called Sergio out immediately after his less than dominant victory over Barker.  Sergio expressed interest in the winner of Cotto-Margarito, and also shot down any suggestion of him moving up to 168.  I assume he would still like to fight Chavez, as well.
1) Daniel Geale (15-120-120)
Last Fight: 8/31/2011- UD12 Eromosele Albert (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Geale may be fighting Pirog in early 2012 on HBO.
2) Grzegorz Proksa (1-25-25)
Last Fight: 10/1/2011- RTD3 #4 Sebastian Sylvester
Next Fight: Unknown
After destroying Sylvester, Proksa may be in for a fight with fringe contender Sebastian Zbik next.
3) Felix Sturm (1-420-420)
Last Fight: 6/25/2011- W*(SD12) vs. #11 Matthew Macklin
Next Fight: 12/2/2012- vs. Martin Murray (UNR)
Apparently ducking a rematch with British contender Matthew Macklin, Sturm will instead fight his countryman, undefeated prospect Martin Murray, in Mannheim.
4) Matthew Macklin (1-15-106)
Last Fight: 6/25/2011- L*(SD12) vs. #1 Felix Sturm
Next Fight: Unknown
Macklin couldn’t secure a rematch of his borderline robbery loss to Sturm, as the German has opted to fight countryman Martin Murray, instead.
5) Hassan N’Dam N’Jikam (13-49-49)
Last Fight: 4/2/2011- UD12 Giovanni Lorenzo (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
A fight rumored to be in the works with Gennady Golovkin has reportedly been scuttled by N’Dam’s unwillingness to fight the Kazakh.
6) Dmitry Pirog (13-62-62)
Last Fight: 9/25/2011- RTD10 Gennady Martirosyan (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Pirog may be fighting Geale in early 2012 on HBO.
7) Sebastian Sylvester (1-321-321)
Last Fight: 10/1/2011- L(RTD3) vs. #9 Grzegorz Proksa
Next Fight: Unknown
Sylvester may be getting long in the tooth after being destroyed by Proksa.
8) Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr. (1-18-36)
Last Fight: 6/4/2011- W(MD12) vs. #19 Sebastian Zbik
Next Fight: 11/19/2011- vs. Peter Manfredo, Jr. (UNR)
Chavez is now claiming a hand injury, and will likely now skip his scheduled fight with Ronald Hearns in September and go straight to his second scheduled fight with Peter Manfredo in November.
9) Marco Antonio Rubio (1-26-36)
Last Fight: 9/3/2011- TKO5 Mohammed Akrong (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
The WBC wants Rubio to fight Martinez, with the winner to face Chavez.
10) Anthony Mundine (13-13-36)
Last Fight: 6/5/2011- TKO7 Xavier Tolliver (UNR)
Next Fight: 10/19/2011- vs. Rigoberto Alvarez (UNR)
Mundine bailed on an anticipated fight with Austin Trout and will now fight smaller gatekeeper Rigoberto Alvarez, older brother of JMW #1 Saul Alvarez.  He’s stated he wants the Trout fight after that, and then Cotto.
11) Maxim Bursak (13-36)
Last Fight: 5/28/2011- vs. Carlos Jerez (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Absolutely dominated Jerez.
12) Osumanu Adama (13-28)
Last Fight: 3/25/2011- TKO4 #19 Marcus Upshaw
Next Fight: 10/6/2011- vs. Roman Karmazin (UNR)
Roman Karmazin has been lured out of retirement to fight Adama on October 6.
13) Paul Williams (13-130)
Last Fight: 7/9/2011- W*(MD12) vs. JMW #15 Erislandy Lara (at JMW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Lara handled him easily despite what the awful judges said, and his poor performance earns him a demotion even though the fight took place at JMW.
14) Garth Wood (18-36)
Last Fight: 4/13/2011- L (UD10) vs. #20 Anthony Mundine
Next Fight: Unknown
Wood appeared set to fight journyeman Johannes Mwetupunga on the Geale-Albert undercard, but pulled out of that fight.
15) Billy Lyell (25-36)
Last Fight: 7/1/2011- UD6 vs. Michael Walker (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Lyell is curiously underrated, it seems to me.  When a guy like him is relegated to fighting 6-rounders, something’s wrong.
16) Nobuhiro Ishida (25-26)
Last Fight: 4/9/2011- TKO1 James Kirkland (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Ishida was looking to fight JC Chavez in September, but Chavez opted for a likely easier fight with the less-accomplished Ronald Hearns.  Ishida seems to be on everyone’s short list, but always loses out on the big fight since beating Kirkland.
17) Gennady Golovkin (16-16)
Last Fight: 6/17/2011- KO10 Kassim Ouma (UNR)
Next Fight: 10/15/2011- vs. Lajuan Simon (UNR)
Golovkin is now set to fight journeyman Lajuan Simon in October.
18) Avtandil Khurtsidze (16-36)
Last Fight: 6/11/2011- KO1 Dionisio Miranda (UNR)
Next Fight: 10/3/2012- vs. Jason LeHoullier (UNR)
Khurtsidze will stay busy on Monday, October 3, against journeyman Jason LeHoullier.
19) Demetrius Andrade (7-7)
Last Fight: 9/21/2011- RTD3 Saul Duran (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
20) Darren Barker (7-36)
Last Fight: 10/1/2011- L(KO11) vs. Champ Sergio Martinez
Next Fight: Unknown
A respectable effort with a less than respectable ending against Martinez.

 

The Week Ahead: #12 Osumanu Adama takes on comebacking former top 10 contender Roman Karmazin in Burbank, Illinois on Friday.  The following night in Neuquen, Argentina, fringe contender Billi Godoy takes on gatekeeper Claudio Abalos in a rematch of their riot-inducingly controversial technical decision from May.
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