Middleweight: 2013, Jan 21-27

#3 Gennady Golovkin and junior middle contender Gabriel Rosado met up at MSG Saturday, and the fight progressed about exactly as I would have predicted.  Both guys threw and landed hard punches, but ultimately Golovkin was a little too big and a little too good, and he won arguably every round.  That is, until he busted up Rosado so badly that Rosado could no longer see the punches coming, prompting his corner to stop the fight.


The same night in Uncasville, CT,  former top super middleweight prospect Curtis Stevens- who took more than two years off after an upset loss to Jesse Brinkley in 2010- made a big statement that he is back, dropping down to middleweight for the first time in his career and stopping gatekeeper Elvin Ayala just over a minute into the fight.  Ayala was clocked with a left hook that sent him down, and he was completely done from that point on.  Referee Tony Chiarantano inexplicably allowed Ayala to continue after the first knockdown, while totally defenseless and unable to stand up straight.  Thanks to Chiarantano, Ayala absorbed a barrage of additional punishment, including a second nearly identical left hook that sent him flopping to the canvas for a second time.  Only then did Chiarantano call an end to the slaughter.


On the previous evening in Junin, Argentina, local gatekeeper Mateo Veron managed only a close 6-round majority decision over mediocre journeyman Abel Adriel.


Golovkin’s win fails to move him past Felix Sturm.  Rosado equates to something like a top 10 middleweight based on his success at 154, but he cannot be much help to the Kazakh in terms of quantity of such wins.  Practically speaking, Golovkin would need a win over Sturm, Geale, or Martinez to advance, or would need Geale or Sturm to experience the kind of struggles that Sturm encountered in 2011.


Stevens is a different matter.  His win was very impressive, and his struggles in the past were now long ago, and in a higher weight class.  He debuts at #18, forcing Makoto Fuchigami out after just 4 weeks.  Ishida and Vera each backtrack one spot, as well.


Dan’s Top 20 (Weeks in Current Position-Weeks in Top 10 if applicable-Weeks in Top 20)
Champ: Sergio Martinez (145-145-145)
Last Fight: 9/15/2012- UD12 #4 Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr.
Next Fight: 4/27/2013- vs. #9 Martin Murray
Martinez will look to come back strong from knee surgery when he takes on Martin Murray in Argentina on April 27.
1) Daniel Geale (83-188-188)
Last Fight: 9/1/2012- W*(SD12) vs. #4 Felix Sturm
Next Fight: 1/30/2013- vs. #11 Anthony Mundine
Geale now has a date and location for the Mundine fight: January 30, in Sidney.
2) Felix Sturm (21-488-488)
Last Fight: 9/1/2012- L*(SD12) vs. #1 Daniel Geale
Next Fight: 2/1/2013- vs. #12 Sam Soliman
Sturm will fight Aussie Sam Soliman in Germany in early February.
3) Gennady Golovkin (21-21-84)
Last Fight: 1/19/2013- TKO7 JMW #? Gabriel Rosado
Next Fight: Unknown
Another fairly impressive win for GGG.  It will be interesting to learn who he can convince to fight him next.
4) Matthew Macklin (19-83-174)
Last Fight: 9/15/2012- TKO1 Joachim Alcine (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Andy Lee recently called Macklin out.
5) Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr. (19-86-104)
Last Fight: 9/15/2012- L (UD12) vs. Champ Sergio Martinez
Next Fight: Unknown
Chavez is expecting to return in May, and then- provided both men win their spring fights- rematch Martinez in September.  It looks like his next fight will be without trainer Freddie Roach, as he appears set to dump Roach for either Nacho Beristain or Robert Garcia.
6) Peter Quillin (14-14-35)
Last Fight: 10/20/2012- UD12 #6 Hassan N’Dam N’Jikam
Next Fight: 2/9/2013- vs. Fernando Guerrero (UNR)
After originally being rumored to be working on a fight with Jermain Taylor, Quillin will instead be fighting fringe contending one-loss Dominican Fernando Guerrero.  It was originally rumored for January 19, but has been set for February 9 now.
7) Dmitry Pirog (38-130-130)
Last Fight: 5/1/2012- UD12 #20 Nobuhiro Ishida
Next Fight: 3/2/2013- vs. Unknown Opponent
Pirog will return to the ring- and the US- fighting an opponent to be announced March 3 on HBO.
8) Grzegorz Proksa (21-93-93)
Last Fight: 9/1/2012- L(TKO5) vs. #13 Gennady Golovkin
Next Fight: Unknown
After a taxing TKO loss to Golovkin (and a fairly busy first 3 quarters of the year), Proksa now says he’ll take a rest until at least January.
9) Martin Murray (21-60-60)
Last Fight: 11/24/2012- TKO6 Jorge Navarro (UNR)
Next Fight: 4/27/2013- vs. Champ Sergio Martinez
Murray will look to prove that he belongs at or above the level he achieved by drawing with Sturm when he fights the Champ in Argentina on April 27.
10) Hassan N’Dam N’Jikam (14-117-117)
Last Fight: 10/20/2012- L (UD12) vs. #20 Peter Quillin

Next Fight: Unknown
As it turns out, N’Dam had a rematch clause in his contract with Quillin, but he also has expressed interest in Golovkin, Geale, Martinez, and Chavez.  Quillin has scheduled a fight with Fernando Guerrero, as well.
11) Anthony Mundine (14-104)
Last Fight: 7/14/2012- TKO7 Bronco McKart (UNR)
Next Fight: 1/30/2013- vs. #1 Daniel Geale
A big opportunity for Mundine in the rematch of his split decision victory over Geale.
12) Sam Soliman (14-49)
Last Fight: 8/24/2012- UD12 Giovanni Lorenzo (UNR)
Next Fight: 2/1/2013- vs. #2 Felix Sturm
Soliman is fighting Sturm all of a sudden.
13) Marco Antonio Rubio (14-104)
Last Fight: 12/22/2012- KO11 Michel Rosales (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Rubio appears to be in line for the Quillin-Guerrero winner.
14) Osumanu Adama (14-96)
Last Fight: 3/7/2012- L(UD12) vs. #1 Daniel Geale
Next Fight: Unknown
Adama’s scheduled return against Derrick Findley was abruptly canceled at the last moment.  I don’t know why, nor when he might be back again.
15) Max Bursak (5-104)
Last Fight: 7/21/2012- KO1 Sergei Melis (UNR)
Next Fight: 2/2/2013- vs. Julien Marie Sainte (UNR)
Bursak will be fighting for a European title over what should be a pretty easy opponent in Frenchman Julien Marie Sainte- essentially a journeyman.  The one bit of intrigue is that the fight is taking place in France.
16) Demetrius Andrade (5-75)
Last Fight: 9/20/2012- TKO2 Alexis Hloros (UNR)
Next Fight: 1/25/2013- vs. Freddy Hernandez (UNR) (at JMW)
No word on why, but junior middleweight gatekeeper Freddy Hernandez is replacing Javier Maciel in the January 25 fight with Andrade.  The fight will be on ShoBox.
17) Darren Barker (5-67)
Last Fight: 12/8/2012- TKO4 Kerry Hope (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Barker wants Macklin and Murray, although Murray is obviously otherwise occupied for some months to come.
18) Curtis Stevens (1-1)
Last Fight: 1/19/2013- KO1 Elvin Ayala (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Years later and 8 pounds lighter, Curtis Stevens is back in the mix.
19) Nobuhiro Ishida (1-47)
Last Fight: 5/1/2012- L(UD12) vs. #8 Dmitry Pirog
Next Fight: Unknown
Barely challenged Pirog at all, but has enough mileage left on the Kirkland upset to remain ranked for the moment.
20) Bryan Vera (1-14)
Last Fight: 8/11/2012- W (MD12) vs. Sergio Mora (UNR)
Next Fight: 1/25/2013- vs. Sergei Dzinziruk (UNR)
Vera will get a big opportunity to establish himself as a contender when he fights once very highly ranked contender Sergei Dzinziruk on Friday Night Fights.


The Week Ahead: #20 Bryan Vera takes on contender turned gatekeeper Sergei Dzinziruk in the Friday Night Fights main event from Verona, NY.

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