Light Heavyweight: 2013, Jul 8-14

Friday in Auckland, New Zealand, fringe contender Robert Berridge dominated and stopped Japanese journeyman Shintaro Matsumoto in the 5th round of a scheduled 12. 


Later that night in Thiase, France, #20 Doudou Ngumbu apparently injured his shoulder during the 10th round of a close fight with Igor Mikhalkin, in a rematch of their close 2010 battle.  I couldn’t find a video, but according to the scores (Mikhalkin won by between 1 and 3 points according to the French report I translated), the rounds under which Ngumbu labored with a damaged appendage may have been critical.


Two fights apparently fell through for the weekend.  Eleider Alvarez and Allan Green’s Friday Night Fights main event was scrapped on the day of the fight by Green’s hospitalization for food poisoning after the match survived Green’s failure (by a full 6 pounds) to make what turned out to be an already generous contract weight of 180.  Maybe the illness prevented him from training, or maybe the thought of fighting Alvarez with the limited amount of training he did do was the real reason he was sick to his stomach.  Edison Miranda vs. Konni Konrad also fell through, for reasons of which I’m unaware.


Mikhalkin, despite the top-20 victory, falls just shy of a ranking.  The reason?  Glen Johnson has a win over a #7 contender, and despite several bumps in the road since then, still has yet to prove himself to be below the top 20 level (with the disclaimer that I felt he did enough to defeat Fonfara).  Therefore, Johnson rises to claim the spot vacated by Ngumbu.


Dan’s Top 20 (weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: Andre Ward (44-44-44)
Last Fight: 9/8/2012- TKO10 Champ Chad Dawson (at SMW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Ward has offers more or less on the table to fight Froch or Stevenson.  He is trying to split with promoter Dan Goossen, though, which could conceivably complicate matters.
1) Adonis Stevenson (5-5-5)
Last Fight: 6/8/2013- TKO1 #1 Chad Dawson
Next Fight: Unknown
Stevenson and Hopkins reportedly wanted to fight each other, but HBO threw a tantrum and won’t do business with Hopkins because he’s a Golden Boy fighter.  Way to hurt the sport, HBO.  We really needed more of that.  In the meantime, the WBC has scheduled a purse bid for Stevenson-Bellew on July 26.
2) Bernard Hopkins (44-370-370)
Last Fight: 3/9/2012- UD12 #6 Tavoris Cloud
Next Fight: Unknown
Murat’s visa issue appears to have been cleared up, and there is talk of the fight being rescheduled for September 21.  Kovalev was briefly the mandatory, but he has signed to fight Cleverly.
3) Sergey Kovalev (4-25-25)
Last Fight: 6/14/2013- TKO3 #10 Cornelius White
Next Fight: 8/17/2013- vs. #8 Nathan Cleverly
Kovalev had the inside track to fight Hopkins, but instead opted for a sure thing against Cleverly.
4) Chad Dawson (4-371-371)
Last Fight: 6/8/2013- L(TKO1) vs. SMW #6 Adonis Stevenson
Next Fight: Unknown
Dawson’s career is suddenly in an all-out tailspin just 2 fights after winning the lineal title from Hopkins.
5) Tony Bellew (4-91-91)
Last Fight: 5/25/2013- UD12 #7 Isaac Chilemba
Next Fight: Unknown
Bellew’s ultimate triumph over Chilemba has now set him up with a mandatory shot at Stevenson, which would continue the trend of the best fighting the best at 175.  Purse bids are scheduled for July 26.
6) Gabriel Campillo (5-159-159)
Last Fight: 6/14/2013- TKO2 Ionut Trandafir Ilie (UNR)
Next Fight: 8/16/2013- vs. #13 Andrzej Fonfara
Campillo will fight Fonfara in an interesting crossroads fight at Comiskey Park in Chicago.
7) Tavoris Cloud (5-202-205)
Last Fight: 3/9/2013- L (UD12) vs. #2 Bernard Hopkins
Next Fight: Unknown
There is apparently HBO interest in Stevenson-Cloud, but nothing solid at this point.
8) Nathan Cleverly (5-179-179)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- UD12 Robin Krasniqi (UNR)
Next Fight: 8/17/2013- vs. #3 Sergey Kovalev
Kovalev-Cleverly is done for 8/17 in Cardiff, with HBO to televise in the states.
9) Isaac Chilemba (5-15-75)
Last Fight: 5/25/2013- L (UD12) vs. #9 Tony Bellew
Next Fight: Unknown
Chilemba may have lost the second fight to Bellew in his opponent’s back yard, but between the two fights, he’s managed to elevate himself somewhat.
10) Cornelius White (5-52-82)
Last Fight: 6/14/2013- L (TKO3) vs. #5 Sergey Kovalev
Next Fight: Unknown
White was blasted out by Kovalev, but at least he has good company in that regard.
11) Cedric Agnew (5-13)
Last Fight: 4/12/2013- UD12 #14 Yusaf Mack
Next Fight: Unknown
Agnew may have caught a fading Yusaf Mack at the right time, but he’s clearly a climber, having now beaten both Mack and Otis Griffin.
12) Jürgen Brähmer (5-64)
Last Fight: 4/27/2013- TKO2 Tony Averlant (UNR)
Next Fight: 8/24/2013- vs. Stefano Abatangelo (UNR)
Braehmer will take on low-level Italian gatekeeper Abatangelo on August 24, while awaiting a title shot.
13) Andrzej Fonfara (5-52)
Last Fight: 11/16/2012- TKO7 Tommy Karpency (UNR)
Next Fight: 8/16/2013- vs. #6 Gabriel Campillo
Fonfara will get a huge opportunity to launch himself into the top 5 when he takes on Gabriel Campillo in Chicago.
14) Lucian Bute (5-36)
Last Fight: 11/3/2012- UD12 #16 Denis Grachev
Next Fight: 12/7/2013- vs. Jean Pascal (UNR)
Bute-Pascal has been rescheduled tentatively for December 7 after Bute suffered a hand injury.  They’ve also reserved January 25 as a back-up plan.  Either way, it will be in Montreal.
15) Hadillah Mohoumadi (2-2)
Last Fight: 6/29/2013- TKO7 CW #20 Pawel Glazewski
Next Fight: Unknown
Often robbed at 168, Mohoumadi took matters into his hands in his first major outing at 175 by stopping the local favorite.
16) Denis Grachev (2-63)
Last Fight: 3/30/2013– W* (SD10) vs. Zsolt Erdei (UNR) (should be draw)
Next Fight: 7/13/2013- vs. SMW #13 Edwin Rodriguez
Grachev will be fighting Edwin Rodriguez at a catchweight of 171.5 in Monte Carlo for a million dollar prize.
17) Dmitry Sukhotsky (2-141)
Last Fight: 6/4/2013- KO3 Mikhail Krinitsin (UNR) (at SMW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Sukhotsky may be sticking around at 168 from now on, but only time will tell.  He has until December to schedule a fight at 175 if he wants to keep his ranking.
18) Eleider Alvarez (2-24)
Last Fight: 3/22/2013- TKO3 Nicholson Poulard (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Alvarez was ready to tolerate Allan Green’s almost comical failure to make weight, but the fight was scrapped anyway due to Green’s hospitalization with what the Green camp claims was food poisoning.  No word yet on Alvarez’s next move.
19) Yunieski Gonzalez (2-17)
Last Fight: 6/15/2013- KO7 Emiliano Cayetano (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Gonzalez snuck in a very low-profile knockout over low-level journeyman Emiliano Cayetano in the Dominican Republic.   Strictly stay-busy material.
20) Glen Johnson (1-1)
Last Fight: 4/19/2013- TKO2 Junior Ramos (UNR) (at CW)
Next Fight: 8/23/2013- vs. Isiah Thomas (UNR)


The Week Ahead: The division features two significant fights in Europe, both on Saturday.


In the more important of the two, #16 Denis Grachev takes on #14 Super Middleweight Edwin Rodriguez for a million dollar prize, at a catchweight of 171.5 pounds.  For what it’s worth, I had neither guy winning the fight that advanced them into this tournament final.


Kosovar gatekeeper Robin Krasniqi will see action in Dresden against Tomas Adamek (nope, not him…the Czech journeyman), as well.

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