Junior Middleweight: 2012, Jan 30- Feb 5

In maybe a bit of a minor upset, inactive fringe contender Cory Spinks suddenly became a resurgent contender by nicking a close but unanimous decision over #11 Sechew Powell on Saturday in Springfield, Missouri.  Powell claims home cooking (the fight was 3 hours from Spinks’ hometown of St. Louis), saying all of the judges should have scored it 116-112 in his favor.  Unfortunately the fight was not on TV, and not even the most amateur of videos seems to exist anywhere.  This is one of the most significant fights in my memory to be so totally devoid of video.  I could have gone and watched the fight, and in fact intended to, but was unable to get off work.  Anyway, in the absence of any reliable evidence to the contrary, I have no choice but to accept it as a close victory for Spinks.


In the division’s only other notable fight, gatekeeper Grady Brewer managed to win a decision over lower mid-level Brazilian journeyman Edvan Dos Santos in Oklahoma City, but only won by a unanimous margin of 6 rounds to 2- not what you’d like to see from a guy trying to rebuild at a late stage of his career when fighting against that level of competition.


Spinks win takes him from the brink of obscurity to the #10 spot in one fell swoop.  Powell slides all the way back to #18 with the loss.  This illustrates why I like to see all fights that might affect my rankings.  Whether right or wrong, the judges have brought one man back from the dead and badly damaged the career of another- all with no public oversight.  If I’m ever able to locate a video, I will obviously watch the hell out of it. 


In the reshuffling, Austin Trout is forced out of the top 10 after an 8-week stint, and Prince Arron is bounced from the rankings after returning for 7 weeks.


Dan’s Top 20 (Weeks in Current Position-Weeks in Top 10 if applicable-Weeks in Top 20)
Champ: None
1) Saul Alvarez (33-48-63)
Last Fight: 11/26/2011- TKO5 Kermit Cintron (UNR)
Next Fight: 5/5/2012- vs. Unknown Opponent
Canelo is reportedly considering Kirkland and Shane Mosley for his May 5 date- probably as a co-feature for a Mayweather fight.
2) Cornelius Bundrage (33-78-78)
Last Fight: 6/25/2011- UD12 #11 Sechew Powell
Next Fight: Unknown
K9 is interested in Kirkland, Cotto, and Sergio Martinez.
3) James Kirkland (13-13-13)
Last Fight: 11/5/2011- TKO6 #4 Alfredo Angulo
Next Fight: 3/24/2012-  vs. #6 Carlos Molina
Kirkland-Molina has a new date of March 24, in Houston.
4) Miguel Cotto (9-87-87)
Last Fight: 12/3/2011- RTD10 #20 Antonio Margarito
Next Fight: Unknown
The prevailing rumor is that Cotto will fight Pacquiao in a rematch on June 9 in Vegas, but Cotto maintains that no deal has been reached.
5) Erislandy Lara (9-30-52)
Last Fight: 7/9/2011- L*(MD12) vs. #6 Paul Williams
Next Fight: 2/11/2012- vs. Ronald Hearns (UNR)
After challenging a bunch of bigger names, Lara will take a tune-up on February 11 against journeyman Ronald Hearns.
6) Carlos Molina (30-30-45)
Last Fight: 7/9/2011- UD10 #7 Kermit Cintron
Next Fight: 3/24/2012- vs. #3 James Kirkland
See Kirkland’s notes, above.
7) Alfredo Angulo (13-123-123)
Last Fight: 11/5/2011- L (TKO6) vs. James Kirkland (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Angulo had no shortage of guts, but appeared a bit physically overmatched against a beastly incarnation of Kirkland.
8) Ryan Rhodes (9-119-119)
Last Fight: 11/26/2011- W (PTS8) vs. Sergei Khomitski (UNR) (at MW)
Next Fight: 3/24/2012- vs. Sergei Rabchenk0 (UNR)
Rhodes will fight undefeated Belorussian prospect Sergei Rabchenko on March 24 in Sheffield, England for a European title.
9) Gabriel Rosado (2-2-52)
Last Fight: 1/21/2012- TKO5 Jesus Soto Karass (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Rosado looks like a really strong contender after demolishing a game and durable Soto Karass.  He wants Canelo next.
10) Cory Spinks (1-1-1)
Last Fight: 1/28/2012- UD12 #11 Sechew Powell
Next Fight: Unknown
I cannot confirm that the close unanimous decision verdict over Powell was accurate due to lack of video.  So whether for skill or lack of sunlight, Spinks is very much back in the mix.
11) Austin Trout (1-52)
Last Fight: 11/11/2011- TKO6 Frank LoPorto (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Trout wants Cotto, Rodriguez, Mundine, and Kirkland, and also has apparently mutual interest in fighting Lara.
12) Delvin Rodriguez (9-29)
Last Fight: 12/3/2011- UD10* #9 Pawel Wolak
Next Fight: Unknown
There appears to be a decent shot that Rodriguez will be fighting Trout next.
13) Paul Williams (8-52)
Last Fight: 7/9/2011- W*(MD12) vs. #17 Erislandy Lara (Robbery)
Next Fight: 2/18/2012- vs. #17 MW Nobuhiro Ishida
Williams-Ishida is set for February 18 in Corpus Christi, Texas.
14) Brian Rose (8-9)
Last Fight: 12/3/2011- W (SD12) vs. #8 Prince Arron
Next Fight: 3/31/2012- vs. Max Maxwell (UNR)
Rose’s first defense of his British title will come in his hometown of Blackpool  against Max Maxwell.  Maxwell is a very mediocre journeyman who just so happens to be the only man to ever beat Rose.
15) Vanes Martirosyan (8-35)
Last Fight: 10/29/2011- UD10 Richard Gutierrez (UNR)
Next Fight: 2/4/2012- vs. Troy Lowry (UNR)
Martirosyan makes another peculiar career move by fighting lower-mid-level journeyman Troy Lowry on the Chavez-Rubio undercard in San Antonio on February 4.
16) Yuri Foreman (8-122)
Last Fight: 3/12/2011- L (RTD6) vs. Pawel Wolak (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Foreman’s career currently hangs in the balance, and he reportedly is not sure whether or not to continue fighting.
17) Lukas Konecny (8-25)
Last Fight: 5/27/2011- UD12 Hussein Bayram (UNR)
Next Fight: 2/?/2012- vs. Zaurbek Baysangurov (UNR)
Konecny has agreed to fight Baysangurov in February.  The fight will either be in Moscow, Grozny, or Kiev.
18) Sechew Powell (1-98)
Last Fight: 6/25/2011- L(UD12) vs. #3 Cornelius Bundrage
Next Fight: 1/28/2012- vs. Cory Spinks (UNR)
19) Deandre Latimore (1-24)
Last Fight: 4/16/2011- UD8 Dennis Sharpe (UNR) (at MW)
Next Fight: 2/24/2012- vs. Unknown Opponent
Latimore has signed with Mayweather Promotions, and has a fight set up for February 24 on ShoBox from Vegas.  No opponent yet.
20) Antonio Margarito (1-12)
Last Fight: 12/3/2011- L (RTD10) vs. #5 Miguel Cotto
Next Fight: Unknown
There is talk floating that Margarito might move up to fight Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr. in June.


The Week Ahead:  Two notables will see action on Saturday.  In Tokyo, 34 year old Daisuke Nakagawa, a two-loss, top 50 fighter that has not lost since 2005, takes on one-loss prospect Yosuke Kirima for the Japanese title recently vacated by American transplant Charlie Ota.  Later that night in San Antonio, #15 Vanes Martirosyan continues to tread water against journeyman Troy Lowry on the Chavez-Rubio undercard.

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