Heavyweight: 2013, Aug 26- Sep 1

Christian Hammer- whose assumed name is right up there with Charles “The Hammer of God” Martel in terms of pure crusaderesque imagery- finally lived up to that name on Friday in his native Galati, Romania by knocking out a top 50 fighter, ending the night of Norwegian prospect/gatekeeper Leif Larsen in round 7.  Hammer had previously fallen short against Taras Bidenko and Mariusz Wach, both in 2010.


Later that night in Dover, Delaware, undefeated 41 year-old prospect Amir Mansour won what went down on paper, at least, as a fairly dominant decision over gatekeeper Maurice Harris.  Judge Joseph Pasquale dissented a bit, scoring it 116-112 compared to the wide scores of Mark D’Attilio (120-108) and Brian Costello (119-109).  With no video to review, I have to take it as a pretty dominant win given the majority of scores.


But in by far the biggest fight of the week, #8 Kubrat Pulev edged out #11 Tony Thompson in a workmanlike decision win.  I had it 115-113 Pulev, though I thought there were enough close rounds that it could have gone either way by a round or two.  The judges, given that it was a Sauerland event, were predictably biased.  Polish judge Pawel Kardyni had it a respectable 116-112 for Pulev, but the US’s Don Trella went too far at 117-111, and Mickey Vann of England, as he often is, was way off at 118-110.


Pulev just barely creeps past Chisora to the #7 spot.  It’s a tough call.  Chisora has by far the best result of the two, with his domination of Robert Helenius.  But he does have losses to Vitali, Haye, and Tyson Fury, meaning he has a potentially lower upside, while Pulev also has a ton of decent wins over gatekeepers, with Chisora lacking that level of depth.  Thompson stands pat at #11, since the fight really just confirmed that both guys were ranked about right relative to one another.  Mansour’s win gets him within shouting distance of the top 20, but he’s about 2 spots shy in my book.  Hammer, dragged down a bit by his past struggles, parks within the top 35, but has some work to do to get any higher than that.


Dan’s Top 20 (Weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: Wladimir Klitschko (218-431-431)
Last Fight: 5/4/2013- TKO6 Francesco Pianeta
Next Fight: 10/5/2013- vs. #4 Alexander Povetkin
Klitschko-Povetkin is now officially signed for 10/5 in Moscow.
1) Vitali Klitschko (255-255-255)
Last Fight: 9/8/2012- TKO4 Manuel Charr (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Vitali is struggling with a hand injury according to the WBC.  But it’s already been nearly a year, and he’s made no attempt to get a fight done.  I’ll keep him ranked based on the logical possibility that he may still schedule a fight before the 2nd week of September.  Most likely, though, he’ll be removed at that time.
2) Tyson Fury (19-110-110)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- KO7 #3 Steve Cunningham
Next Fight: 9/28/2013- vs. #3 David Haye
Fury-Haye is a done deal for September 28 in Manchester.
3) David Haye (19-59-59)
Last Fight: 7/14/2012- TKO5 #6 Dereck Chisora
Next Fight: 9/28/2013- vs. #2 Tyson Fury
See Fury’s notes, above.
4) Alexander Povetkin (59-305-305)
Last Fight: 5/17/2013- TKO3 Andrzej Wawryzk (UNR)
Next Fight: 10/5/2013- vs. Champ Wladimir Klitschko
See Wlad’s notes, above.
5) Steve Cunningham (19-36-36)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- L (KO7) vs. #6 Tyson Fury
Next Fight: Unknown
Cunningham is now sparring with the man that knocked him out in April- Tyson Fury.
6Tomasz Adamek (19-175-175)
Last Fight: 8/3/2013- UD10 Dominick Guinn (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
A collision between two of Main Events’ blue chip heavyweights is being discussed for November, as they’re looking to match Adamek with Bryant Jennings.
7) Kubrat Pulev (1-69-146)
Last Fight: 8/24/2013- UD12 #11 Tony Thompson
Next Fight: Unknown
Pulev will now be at least one of Wlad’s mandatories after beating Thompson.
8) Dereck Chisora (1-91-154)
Last Fight: 7/20/2013- KO6* #17 Malik Scott
Next Fight: 9/21/2013- vs. Unknown Opponent
Pulev has dropped the EBU belt and will thus not be fighting Chisora anytime soon.  Chisora will now likely fight Denis Boytsov for the belt, though it’s not clear if there’s any chance of that happening on September 21 or not.
9) Odlanier Solis (12-23-170)
Last Fight: 7/27/2013- TKO7 Yakup Saglam (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Solis is now pushing for what would be a very intriguing fight with Deontay Wilder.
10) Bermane Stiverne (10-10-26)
Last Fight: 4/27/2013- UD12 #15 Chris Arreola
Next Fight: Unknown
Stiverne was the victim of another delayed purse bid, as Vitali asked for and was granted another extension from the scheduled 7/22 date.
11) Tony Thompson (10-170)
Last Fight: 8/24/2013- L (UD12) vs. #8 Kubrat Pulev
Next Fight: Unknown
Thompson may have come up a bit short against Pulev, but he proved that even at 41, he’s still a challenge for obviously top-10 opposition.
12) Seth Mitchell (10-12)
Last Fight: 6/22/2013- UD12 #10 Johnathon Banks
Next Fight: 9/7/2013- vs. Chris Arreola (UNR)
The Mitchell-Arreola fight has been moved back to Saturday the 7th instead of Friday the 6th.
13) Deontay Wilder (12-18)
Last Fight: 8/9/2013- KO1 Sergei Liakhovich (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Wilder would like to fight the winner of the fight between Arreola and his friend and stablemate Seth Mitchell.  He’s also been challenged by the Odlanier Solis camp, and says he wants the Klitschkos before they retire.
14) Robert Helenius (12-170)
Last Fight: 3/23/2013- W*(UD10) vs. Michael Sprott (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
If Helenius’ team was accurate on the severity of his hand injury, it should be long healed by now, although there were immediate rumors that the injury was more serious.
15) Alexander Dimitrenko (12-137)
Last Fight: 3/9/2013- UD8 Ivica Perkovic (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Dimitrenko turned down a Pulev rematch.
16) Vyacheslav Glazkov (12-36)
Last Fight: 8/3/2013- TKO2 Byron Polley (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Glazkov’s gift of a draw to Scott seems to have hurt his standing a bit, as his follow-up was so weak it didn’t even make TV on his promoter’s show.  He’s currently sparring with Klitschko to prepare the Champ for the Povetkin fight.
17) Malik Scott (12-27)
Last Fight: 7/20/2013- L (KO6*) vs. #8 Dereck Chisora
Next Fight: Unknown
Scott was up at 9.5 and ready to go, but Phil Edwards called the fight off in an unfortunate SNAFU.  That being said, Chisora was coming on and I already had him ahead.  Scott probably would have gone on to lose anyway.
18) Johnathon Banks (10-41)
Last Fight: 6/22/2013- L (UD12) vs. #20 Seth Mitchell
Next Fight: Unknown
Banks apparently dinged his hands up pretty good in the Mitchell fight- an alternate explanation for those who, like me, thought his inexplicable failure to follow up on his early success was a bit suspicious.  He’s been doing physical therapy, and is about ready to get back in the ring.  He’d like a rematch with Mitchell, but unfortunately a trilogy probably isn’t of much benefit to the fragile young contender at this point.
19) Denis Boytsov (10-219)
Last Fight: 6/15/2013- KO3 Alexander Nesterenko (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Boytsov is likely to fight Dereck Chisora for the EBU belt.  Perhaps on September 21, or perhaps at a later date.
20) Franklin Lawrence (10-26)
Last Fight: 1/25/2013- Mark Brown (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown


THE WEEK AHEAD: Friday in Remedios de Escalada, Argentina, inactive 44 year-old gatekeeper Fabio Moli battles aging one-loss prospect Matias Vidondo for the Argentine title.  Both men are coming off wins of Emilio Zarate in their previous fight.


The next night, Turkish-German undefeated prospect Erkan Teper will take by far his toughest test against fringe contender Michael Sprott in Basel, Switzerland.

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