Heavyweight: 2012, Jul 2-8

Three mismatches to review this week:


Fringe contender Timur Ibragimov- ranked here before his knockout loss to Seth Mitchell- was less than dominant against mediocre South African Wiseman Dlomo on Monday.  Ibrgimov won either 8 or 9 of the 12 rounds, depending on which judge you ask.  This may be an early indication of Ibragimov’s decline, considering his 37 years.


Fast-forwarding to Friday in Providence, Rhode Island, local gatekeeper Jason Estrada shut out weak journeyman Alex Gonzales over 8 rounds.


And Saturday in Lodz, Poland, Polish undefeated prospect Artur Szpilka won a fairly average decision over former contender Jameel McCline, who was game and had plenty of moments despite being seemingly washed up going into the fight.  Szpilka’s struggles in the fight don’t necessarily bode well for his future, but on the other hand this was only his 12th fight.


No changes to the rankings.


Dan’s Top 20 (Weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: Wladimir Klitschko (158-371-371)
Last Fight: 3/3/2012- TKO4 #16 Jean-Marc Mormeck
Next Fight: 7/7/2012- vs. #11 Tony Thompson
Wlad will be defending the title against #11 Tony Thompson in what will likely be another ho-hum matchup for the Champ.  On the bright side, Thompson did put up a relatively spirited challenge the last time the two met in 2008.
1) Vitali Klitschko (195-195-195)
Last Fight: 2/18/2012- UD12 #6 Dereck Chisora
Next Fight: 9/8/2012- vs. Manuel Charr (UNR)
Vitali has scheduled what it sounds like will be his final fight.  Unfortunately, it’s hardly a fight at all.  He’ll take on one of the weakest undefeated fighters you’ll ever see- Syrian Manuel Charr.
2) Tomasz Adamek (3-115-115)
Last Fight: 6/16/2012- UD12 Eddie Chambers (UNR)
Next Fight: 9/8/2012- vs. James Toney (UNR)
Apparently being ranked #2 means you have to schedule crappy crappy fights.  Adamek will be facing overweight has-been James Toney on September 8.
3) Alexander Povetkin (3-245-245)
Last Fight: 2/25/2012- W*(MD12) vs. CW #5 Marco Huck
Next Fight: Unknown
Hasim Rahman has withdrawn from his scheduled silly fight with Povetkin due to a broken hand.  Unfortunately it appears that it will be rescheduled.
4) Marco Huck (16-19-19)
Last Fight: 5/5/2012- Draw (MD12) vs. CW #7 Ola Afolabi (at CW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Unfortunately, Huck is apparently making a thinly-veiled attempt to make a pointless fight with weak European cruiserweight paper champion Alexander Alekseev.  
5) Tyson Fury (16-50-50)
Last Fight: 4/14/2012- TKO5 Martin Rogan (UNR)
Next Fight: 7/7/2012- vs. Vinny Maddalone (UNR)
Fury has taken another low-risk, no reward fight in Vinny Maddalone, the strong but crude American journeyman brawler.  The fight will take place in Clevedon, England.
6) Dereck Chisora (16-31-94)
Last Fight: 2/18/2012- L(UD12) vs. #1 Vitali Klitschko
Next Fight: 7/14/2012- vs. David Haye (UNR)
The British Board is bitterly opposed to this bout- which they refuse to license- but apparently it is going forward anyway.  Get ready for a highly controversial blood-feud between Chisora and recent brawl opponent David Haye, July 14 in London.
7) Eddie Chambers (3-3-3)
Last Fight: L (UD12) vs. #3 Tomasz Adamek
Next Fight: Unknown
Chambers’ MRI revealed a torn tendon, and he had surgery to repair that.  No definite timetable has been set, but I’d be very surprised if we saw him back in the ring before early 2013.
8) Robert Helenius (3-66-110)
Last Fight: 12/3/2011- W*(SD12) vs. #18 Dereck Chisora (Robbery)
Next Fight: Unknown
Encouraging news for Helenius, as he is back to limited rehab-style training after shoulder surgery.
9) Kubrat Pulev (3-9-86)
Last Fight: 5/5/2012- KO11 #12 Alexander Dimitrenko
Next Fight: Unknown
Might have a Helenius clash on the horizon, though the Finn’s health is a factor.
10) Odlanier Solis (3-16-110)
Last Fight: 5/19/2012- UD12 Konstantin Airich (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Considering he was extremely out of shape and had a surgically-repaired knee to worry about, Solis didn’t look too terrible in coasting to victory over a disappointing Konstantin Airich.
11) Tony Thompson (3-110)
Last Fight: 5/27/2011- TKO3 Maurice Harris (UNR)
Next Fight: 7/7/2012- vs. Champ Wladimir Klitschko
See Wladimir Klitschko’s comments, above.
12) Seth Mitchell (3-30)
Last Fight: 4/28/2012- TKO3 Chazz Witherspoon (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Mitchell was set to fight the Klitschko-promoted Johnathon Banks, a mediocre one-loss prospect who is probably an upgrade from Witherspoon at least in terms of accomplishment, but a downgrade from Ibragimov- but he is now on the shelf until the fall due to a hand injury.
13) Ruslan Chagaev (3-294)
Last Fight: 4/21/2012- TKO3 Billy Zumbrun (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
The Valuev win is now over 5 years old, and Chagaev’s ranking has suffered as a result.
14) Alexander Dimitrenko (3-77)
Last Fight: 5/5/2012- L(KO11) vs. #17 Kubrat Pulev
Next Fight: Unknown
Despite showing the heart of a quitter and the consistency of a random number generator against Pulev, Dimitrenko hangs on to a solid ranking because the other guys in his tier haven’t been winning meaningful fights lately.
15) Chris Arreola (3-172)
Last Fight: 2/18/2012- KO1 Eric Molina (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Arreola pulled out of a scheduled fight with journeyman Mike Mollo  with an injury.
16) Denis Boytsov (3-159)
Last Fight: 4/13/2012- UD10 Dominick Guinn (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Boytsov will likely fight in Moscow on August 24, but nothing official yet.
17) Jean-Marc Mormeck (3-110)
Last Fight: 3/3/2012- L(TKO4) vs. Champ Wladimir Klitschko
Next Fight: Unknown
After his scheduled clash with Denis Lebedev fell through somewhat mysteriously, Mormeck now appears to be negotiating another cruiserweight fight- this time with the roughly equally dangerous Ola Afolabi.
18) Bermane Stiverne (3-54)
Last Fight: 4/14/2012- UD8 Willie Herring (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
19) Edmund Gerber (3-9)
Last Fight: 5/5/2012- UD8 Maurice Harris (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Not the most scintillating effort against a passive Harris, but the old man is what passes for a fringe contender in this division at the moment, and thus Gerber has built himself a ranking.
20) Franklin Lawrence (3-58)
Last Fight: 10/28/2011- TKO2 Raymond Ochieng (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown


THE WEEK AHEAD:  The Heavyweight Championship is on the line Saturday in Bern, Switzerland, as Champion Wladimir Klitschko battles #11 contender Tony Thompson.  While this is likely to be another relatively easy win for Wlad, it should be noted that it is actually a rematch of perhaps Wlad’s toughest fight in recent years.


In other action, gatekeepers Shane Cameron and Monte Barrett meet in a well-matched fight in Auckland, New Zealand on Thursday that should do great things for the career of the winner.


In Saturday’s second most important heavyweight fight, #5 Tyson Fury takes on New York journeyman and slugger Vinny Maddalone in Clevedon, England.

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