Junior Middleweight: 2012, Dec 17-23

I don’t claim to be an authority on the Lonsdale Challenge Belt, but Brian Rose may very well be the weakest fighter to ever capture it.  The Lonsdale belt is a device to keep British titlists defending that title, whereby you get to keep the belt only if you defend it three times.  He first won the belt in impressive fashion, dominating a very heavily favored and top-10 world-ranked Prince Arron.  His first defense was against Max Maxwell, an extremely mediocre journeyman who got the shot only because he had somehow beaten Rose in the past.  The second defense came against possibly even more mediocre Scottish journeyman Kris Carslaw, who nevertheless arguably deserved to beat Rose (I had it for Carslaw, but it was very debatable). 


Finally, he capped off his dubiously triumphant reign with another arguable victory, this time over journeyman and former British titlist Sam Webb, who needed a blatant robbery against a journeyman in the eliminator to even get the shot.  Rose had the look of the bigger and more athletic guy between the two, but seemed to take rounds off to the extent that I had the aggressive Webb pulling off a draw.  The judges had relatively reasonable scores in Rose’s favor, at 116-112 (x2) and 116-113.  To me, it was within 116-112 either way.  Incidentally, Webb announced his retirement after the fight.


The same night in Nuremberg, Germany, hot German prospect Jack Culcay scored his best win to date by stopping very respectable French journeyman Jean Michel Hamilcaro in the 5th of a scheduled 12.  The undefeated Culcay has now easily done enough to be considered a top 50 fighter, but has yet to beat a fellow member of that class (Hamilcaro wasn’t quite there), and thus remains ineligible for rankings consideration here.


I must confess that I had Saturday’s fight between Jorge Silva and #9 Alfredo Angulo in the “fun while it lasts” category.  I knew both guys were hard-punching action fighters, but I expected Angulo to overwhelm a game Silva due to his decided size advantage, with Angulo being a full-fledged 154-pounder and Silva a welterweight.  But Silva didn’t quite see it that way.  He came out looking to make a statement in the opening round, and did so.  He got Perro’s respect in a big way, clearly hurting him with a counter off the ropes as Angulo looked to impose his will, and followed up effectively to win round one in rather dominant fashion.  What followed was a pitched battle of rather epic proportions.  Angulo swept the next four rounds, while Silva had his moments and was never remotely out of the fight.  Silva reasserted himself in the 6th, throwing in some boxing and potshots to confound the bigger man.  Angulo appeared to be fading to the point that you had to wonder if he would be willing to hang with the younger and quicker man down the stretch.  But Silva reached his high water mark around the middle of the seventh, hanging on to win a close 7th, but taking some telling blows near the bell.  After that, it was Perro who caught his second win, as he punished a game but flagging Silva for the next two rounds, with the final round being so dominant that a 10-8 wouldn’t have been out of the question.  If the fight had been higher-profile, it would have certainly been in the discussion for fight of the year, and both men were elevated by their effort, as Angulo walked away with a unanimous 97-93 decision that I agreed with completely.  Not that it matters since Silva wasn’t established at 154 anyway, but the fight was contracted at 156.


Despite getting the win in both fights, Rose’s shaky and unclear victories over Carslaw and Webb have proven to my satisfaction that the British 154 scene is just extremely weak, and that Rose doesn’t particularly stand out from it.  With two fights against journeymen that I treat as essentially draws, along with the 2010 loss to another in Maxwell to offset his huge win over Prince Arron (who it now appears was extremely overrated), Rose slumps further down the list, now barely hanging on to a ranking at #20.


Dan’s Top 20 (Weeks in Current Position-Weeks in Top 10 if applicable-Weeks in Top 20)
Champ: None
1) Saul Alvarez (33-94-109)
Last Fight: 9/15/2012- TKO5 WW#? Josesito Lopez
Next Fight: Unknown
Canelo says he’s open to fighting Austin Trout on the Cinco de Mayo weekend, but sadly Golden Boy is more interested in the guy Trout just beat.
2) Carlos Molina (33-76-91)
Last Fight: 8/17/2012- UD10 Damian Frias (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
3) Cornelius Bundrage (39-124-124)
Last Fight: 6/30/2012- TKO7 #11 Cory Spinks
Next Fight: 2/23/2013- vs. Ishe Smith (UNR)
K9 returns to action against gatekeeper Ishe Smith on Showtime, February 23.
4) Austin Trout (3-29-98)
Last Fight: 12/1/2012- UD12 #6 Miguel Cotto
Next Fight: Unknown
See Alvarez’s notes, above.
5) Erislandy Lara (3-76-98)
Last Fight: 11/10/2012- D* (TD9) vs. #15 Vanes Martirosyan (should be win)
Next Fight: Unknown
The WBC will order a re-match of the robbery draw that Lara clearly won in his eliminator with Vanes.
6) Floyd Mayweather, Jr. (3-33-33)
Last Fight: 5/5/2012- UD12* #4 Miguel Cotto
Next Fight: Unknown
Mayweather is in discussions to fight Robert Guerrero at welterweight sometime in the first half of 2013.
7) Miguel Cotto (3-133-133)
Last Fight: 12/1/2012- L (UD12) vs. #8 Austin Trout
Next Fight: Unknown
In the aftermath of his defeat, Cotto shrugged off talk of retirement, and may be heartened by news from Golden Boy that Canelo is still intersted in a fight with him.
8) James Kirkland (3-59-59)
Last Fight: 3/24/2012- W*(DQ10) vs. #6 Carlos Molina (Robbery)
Next Fight: Unknown
Kirkland is apparently having managerial problems.
9) Alfredo Angulo (29-169-169)
Last Fight: 12/15/2012- UD10 Jorge Silva (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Angulo proved he can still go to war after gutting out a tough fight with very hungry prospect Jorge Silva.
10) Gabriel Rosado (30-30-98)
Last Fight: 9/21/2012- TKO10 Charles Whittaker (UNR)
Next Fight: 1/19/2013- vs. #3 MW Gennady Golovkin
Rosado is set to fight intimidating middleweight puncher Gennady Golovkin on January 19 in New York.
11) Cory Spinks (27-47)
Last Fight: 6/30/2012- L (TKO7) vs. #3 Cornelius Bundrage
Next Fight: Unknown
Spinks failed to revenge his ugly 2010 TKO loss to Bundrage, but managed to look a little better and capture a round or two this time.
12) Sergey Rabchenko (27-27)
Last Fight: 11/24/2012- W (SD12) vs. Cedric Vitu (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Rabchenko survived a scare against Vitu.
13) Delvin Rodriguez (30-75)
Last Fight: 6/2/2012- L (UD12) vs. #12 Austin Trout
Next Fight: Unknown
Rodriguez had an opportunity to fight Angulo, but passed for some reason.
14) Lukas Konecny (11-71)
Last Fight: 10/6/2012- L* (UD12) vs. Zaurbek Baysangurov (UNR) (Robbery)
Next Fight: Unknown
Konecny all but dominated Baysangurov, but walked away with one of the worst robbery losses I’ve ever seen.
15) Keith Thurman (4-4)
Last Fight: 11/24/2012- TKO4 #16 Carlos Quintana
Next Fight: Unknown
Who knows if he’ll fight at this weight again anytime soon, but it sure suited him.
16) Vanes Martirosyan (4-81)
Last Fight: 11/10/2012- D* (TD9) vs. #6 Erislandy Lara (robbery- should be L)
Next Fight: Unknown
Martirosyan clearly lost to Lara, but will get a second opportunity thanks to the failure of 2 judges.
17) Sechew Powell (15-144)
Last Fight: 6/1/2012- L (TKO9) vs. #10 Gabriel Rosado
Next Fight: Unknown
18) Roberto Garcia (1-28)
Last Fight: 3/23/2012- UD10 Antwone Smith (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
19) Anthony Mundine (1-15)
Last Fight: 7/14/2012- TKO7 Bronco McKart (at MW)
Next Fight: 1/30/2013- vs. #1 MW Daniel Geale (at MW)
Mundine’s next fight will be against top Middleweight contender Daniel Geale on January 30, in Sydney.
20) Brian Rose (1-55)
Last Fight: 12/14/2012- UD12* Sam Webb (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Rose registered his 3rd defense of his British title, and gets to keep the Lonsdale belt as a result.  But don’t give him too much credit.  The British scene is so moribund that he was able to do so by decisioning 3 journeymen and barely edging two of them.


The Week Ahead: Nothing big going down at 154 this week.

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