Heavyweight: 2012, Dec 10-16

Undefeated Philadelphia prospect Bryant Jennings suffered adversity and showed perseverance against decent Tongan journeyman Bowie Tupou on Saturday.  Both fighters came out cautious, yielding a fairly slow and indecisive first round.  Jennings began to take control in the 2nd, though it was still tough to pick between them.  Round 3 was a big one for Tupou, with the bigger Polynesian fighter dropping Jennings with a glancing but heavy blow to the top of the head.  Referee Blair Talmadge showed himself to be either incompetent or biased by calling it a trip, where no trip even arguably occurred.  Jennings bounced back to clearly win round 4, and then knocked Tupou out with a brilliant right hand-left hook combination to disrupt Tupou’s defense, followed by a beautiful right uppercut up the middle to put his opponent on his back.  Tupou got up about a quarter-second too late to beat the count.

 

Tupou is not a top 50 fighter, though, so no sign of Jennings in the top 20.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (Weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: Wladimir Klitschko (181-394-394)
Last Fight: 11/10/2012- UD12 Mariusz Wach (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Tyson Fury says that Wlad has agreed to fight him probably in mid-2013.  Fury’s impression is that Wlad will likely fight Povetkin first in March.  The latter is consistent with previous reports that Wlad’s March opponent prospects included Povetkin and Boytsov.  No statement either way from the Klitschko camp yet.
1) Vitali Klitschko (218-218-218)
Last Fight: 9/8/2012- TKO4 Manuel Charr (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Vitali originally said he’d decide whether to retire or fight on by December 17, but has now said he won’t decide until 2013.
2) David Haye (22-22-22)
Last Fight: 7/14/2012- TKO5 #6 Dereck Chisora
Next Fight: Unknown
Haye has indicated that a fight with Vitali may be the only fight that would lure him away from re-retiring. 
3) Tomasz Adamek (22-138-138)
Last Fight: 9/8/2012- TKO5 Travis Walker (UNR)
Next Fight: 12/22/2012- vs. CW #4 Steve Cunningham
Originally scheduled to fight Odlanier Solis, Adamek will instead fight a rematch of his classic cruiserweight title fight of 4 years ago when he fights Steve Cunningham in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, after Solis pulled out.
4) Alexander Povetkin (22-268-268)
Last Fight: 9/29/2012- TKO2 Hasim Rahman (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
There are currently rumors floating around to the effect that Povetkin has emerged as the frontrunner for the March shot at Wlad.
5) Tyson Fury (6-73-73)
Last Fight: 12/1/2012- UD12 Kevin Johnson (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Fury’s promoter says that David Price has made a non-serious offer to fight him.  In reality, the money probably doesn’t matter.   Fury could sit around eating Cheetos indefinitely and still get a big-money Klitschko shot in 2013.  The same is not true if he loses to Price.  If he loses to Klitschko, he can probably still fight Price later.
6) Eddie Chambers (6-26-26)
Last Fight: 6/16/2012- L(UD12) vs. #3 Tomasz Adamek
Next Fight: Unknown
Chambers has announced he’ll be moving down to cruiserweight.  He’ll stay rated here for the time being, until he’s been inactive at heavyweight for a year or schedules a cruiserweight fight for after that time.
7) Kubrat Pulev (6-32-109)
Last Fight: 9/29/2012- KO11 Alexander Ustinov (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Pulev may be in for a fight with the Adamek-Cunningham winner, or may go straight to a shot at Wlad in early 2013.
8) Dereck Chisora (6-54-117)
Last Fight: 7/14/2012- L(TKO5) vs. David Haye (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Chisora is in the process of re-applying for his British license, and if successful, may very well fight David Price next.
9) Johnathon Banks (4-4-4)

Last Fight: 11/17/2012- TKO2 #11 Seth Mitchell
Next Fight: Unknown
Seth Mitchell apparently plans to exercise a rematch clause for a return bout with Banks.  If the rematch is called off by Mitchell or is anything but immediate, Banks is interested in Adamek, Povetkin, as well as the Arreola-Stiverne winner.  
10) Odlanier Solis (4-6-133)
Last Fight: 5/19/2012- UD12 Konstantin Airich (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Solis pulled out of his December 22 fight with Adamek, apparently due to severe differences with his Turkish promoter Ahmet Oner, from whom he is apparently trying to separate himself.  Solis’ scheduling has been notoriously unreliable under Oner ever since he injured his knee against Vitali Klitschko.
11) Marco Huck (4-42)
Last Fight: 11/3/2012- W*(UD12) vs. CW #10 Firat Arslan (Robbery)
Next Fight: Unknown
Huck will be fighting a trilogy with Afolabi, with the last fight being in March, when Afolabi is likely to get robbed in Germany.
12) Robert Helenius (5-133)
Last Fight: 11/10/2012- W*(UD10) vs. Sherman Williams (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Barely squeaked by after a comatose performance against journeyman Williams.  The judges had it pretty wide, but make no mistake- it was a 1 or 2 point either way kind of fight.
13) Ruslan Chagaev (22-317)
Last Fight: 9/1/2012- TKO7 Werner Kreiskott (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Chagaev is almost certain to be removed in January, when his last significant win- a solid decision over a contender in Matt Skelton- exceeds the 5 year mark of age.  I don’t factor fights over 5 years old in my rankings.
14) Alexander Dimitrenko (22-100)
Last Fight: 5/5/2012- L(KO11) vs. #17 Kubrat Pulev
Next Fight: Unknown
Dimitrenko is now free of his Universum contract, and has a new trainer in Tommy Brooks.  No prospective fights yet, though.
15) Tony Thompson (22-133)
Last Fight: 7/7/2012- L(TKO6) vs. Champ Wladimir Klitschko
Next Fight: Unknown
In case any of you thought the first fight was a fluke, now you know for sure: Thompson really isn’t as good as Wlad Klitschko.
16) Chris Arreola (22-195)
Last Fight: 2/18/2012- KO1 Eric Molina (UNR)
Next Fight: 2/23/2013- vs. #19 Bermane Stiverne
The oft-delayed Arreola-Stiverne fight once again has a new date- this time February 23- due to an injury to main event headliner Andre Ward.
17) Denis Boytsov (22-182)
Last Fight: 4/13/2012- UD10 Dominick Guinn (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Boytsov very well may remain a candidate to fight Wlad in March, but it now appears that Povetkin may have the inside track.  It’s not out of the question, as far as I know, that he might fight Fury- who is also in line for a fight with Wlad later in the year.  The two had briefly been scheduled to do just that, but Boytsov got cold feet.
18) Jean-Marc Mormeck (22-133)
Last Fight: 3/3/2012- L(TKO4) vs. Champ Wladimir Klitschko
Next Fight: 12/22/2012- vs. CW #6 Krzysztof Wlodarczyk (at CW)
Wlodarczyk has now confirmed that he will indeed be fighting Mormeck in December.
19) Bermane Stiverne (22-77)
Last Fight: 4/14/2012- UD8 Willie Herring (UNR)
Next Fight: 2/23/2013- vs. #16 Chris Arreola
See Arreola’s notes above.
20) Edmund Gerber (22-32)
Last Fight: 11/3/2012- UD8 Darnell Wilson (UNR)
Next Fight: 12/15/2012- vs. Michael Sprott (UNR)
Gerber will fight a rematch with Sprott on the Abraham-Bouadla undercard.  Their first fight ended inconclusively when referee Gerhard Sigl atrociously stopped the fight following a flash knockdown of Sprott in a fight the Brit had been controlling.

 

THE WEEK AHEAD: Friday: Bosnian-born Canadian prospect Neven Pajkic, whose only career loss came in a roller coaster ride of a fight against Tyson Fury, returns for the first time in the 13 months since that fight, taking on Canadian native Shane Andreesen in Windsor, Ontario.  A few hours earlier in France, another one-loss prospect sees action in Cameroon’s Carlos Takam, who will do battle with generic journeyman Ivica Perkovic of Croatia.

 

Saturday: In Nuremberg, Germany, #20 Edmund Gerber finds himself in a rematch with steady British journeyman Michael Sprott, who was winning their previous fight before a Gerber right hand dropped Sprott and gave awful referee Gerhard Sigl an opportunity to decide the fight himself, by waving it off while Sprott was obviously ready to continue.
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