Junior Middleweight: 2013, Sep 9-15

Saturday in Buenos Aires, 2-loss Argentine prospect Javier Maciel- who has given a good fight to the likes of Dmitry Pirog- stopped journeyman and fellow Argentine Alejandro Falliga, who at one point a couple years ago lost out in a close call for the 20th spot in my initial rankings to Antonio Margarito, but who has now lost 3 of his last 6 and beating only nobodies in the process.  Maciel needed 5 rounds to get the job done.  No changes this week.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (Weeks in Current Position-Weeks in Top 10 if applicable-Weeks in Top 20)
Champ: None
1) Carlos Molina (32-114-129)
Last Fight: 2/1/2013- UD12 #11 Cory Spinks
Next Fight: 9/14/2013- vs. #5 Ishe Smith
September 14 looks like junior middleweight D-Day.  #1 vs. #5 (as of this writing), and it’s probably not even the most important fight in the division on that card.  
2) Saul Alvarez (32-132-147)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- W* (UD12) vs. #3 Austin Trout
Next Fight: 9/14/2013- vs. WW Champ Floyd Mayweather, Jr.
Floyd-Canelo on September 14 appeared to be made way back in February, but then appeared to be a distant memory for months.  Now it’s back on, for the exact same date.  The only difference is that Floyd got dropped for inactivity because the fight wasn’t signed when his 1-year anniversary at 154 came around.  There will be a 152-pound catchweight.
3) Austin Trout (29-67-136)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- L* (UD12) vs. #2 Saul Alvarez
Next Fight: Unknown
Trout wants a rematch of his very dubious loss to Alvarez.  He certainly deserves it.  He’ll have to wait until 2014 at the earliest, though, as Canelo is fighting Mayweather.  Rumors of Lara-Trout on the Mayweather-Canelo undercard appear to be false according to Leonard Ellerbe.
4) Erislandy Lara (29-114-136)
Last Fight: 6/8/2013- TKO10 #8 Alfredo Angulo
Next Fight: Unknown
See Trout’s notes, above.
5) Ishe Smith (29-29-29)
Last Fight: 2/23/2013- W (MD12) vs. #3 Cornelius Bundrage
Next Fight: 9/14/2013- vs. #1 Carlos Molina
See Molina’s notes, above.
6) Miguel Cotto (19-171-171)
Last Fight: 12/1/2012- L (UD12) vs. #8 Austin Trout
Next Fight: 10/5/2013- vs. #11 Delvin Rodriguez
After a proposed fight with Bundrage was scrapped by the networks, and a brief flirtation with Carlos Molina, Cotto will now be fighting Delvin Rodriguez on HBO on October 5.
7) Cornelius Bundrage (19-162-162)
Last Fight: 2/23/2013- L (MD12) vs. Ishe Smith (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Bundrage might be fighting a re-match with gatekeeper Zaurbek Baysangurov on November 9 in Russia.
8) Alfredo Angulo (19-207-207)
Last Fight: 6/8/2013- L (TKO10) vs. #4 Erislandy Lara
Next Fight: Unknown
Angulo has shared the good news that there are no broken bones in his face after the devastating Lara combination that forced him to submit.  On one hand, it demystifies Angulo’s warrior image, but it does give him a better outlook for his career going forward, as well.
9) Gabriel Rosado (19-25-136)
Last Fight: 5/4/2013- NC vs. J’Leon Love (UNR) (at MW)
Next Fight: Unknown
With his already-questionable loss to Love overturned due to a positive drug test, Rosado now wants Cotto, Lara, or Trout.  Love wants a rematch after his suspension is over.  While Cotto is otherwise occupied, the last three seem to be realistic possibilities.  
10) Sergey Rabchenko (19-19-65)
Last Fight: 7/16/2013- TKO3 Gari Abajian (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Rabchenko is already in camp for his re-match with Cedric Vitu, though the date has yet to be announced.
11) Delvin Rodriguez (19-113)
Last Fight: 5/24/2013- TKO8 Freddy Hernandez (UNR)
Next Fight: 10/5/2013- vs. #6 Miguel Cotto
See Cotto’s notes, above.
12) Lukas Konecny (19-109)
Last Fight: 7/13/2013- UD12 Moez Fhima (UNR) (at MW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Konecny took care of business against Fhima at 160.  We’ll have to see whether he stays at that weight or not.  My guess would be yes, since he’s fighting for minor titles up there at this point.
13) Keith Thurman (19-42)
Last Fight: 7/27/2013- KO10 Diego Chaves (UNR) (at WW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Thurman and Guerrero appeared destined to fight in November, but according to Golden Boy- which promotes both fighters- Guerrero turned it down.
14) Vanes Martirosyan (19-119)
Last Fight: 6/15/2013- TKO2 Ryan Davis (UNR) (at MW)
Next Fight: 11/9/2013- vs. Demetrius Andrade (UNR)
Martirosyan-Andrade has been moved up a week to November 9.
15) Yuri Foreman (19-33)
Last Fight: 7/24/2013- UD8 Jamaal Davis (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Foreman is very slowly stepping up his level of opposition as his comeback gradually picks up steam.
16) Willie Nelson (15-28)
Last Fight: 6/29/2013- UD10 Luciano Cuello (UNR)
Next Fight: 9/28/2013- vs. Dante Moore (UNR)
When it comes to Nelson’s September 28 opponent, a Cleveland hometown and one-loss record is about all they have in common.  Moore has lost to and drawn with absolute scrubs, and shouldn’t be much of a challenge for Nelson despite a decent-looking 8-1 record.
17) Brian Rose (15-25)
Last Fight: 6/29/2013- W (PTS10) vs. Alexey Ribchev (UNR) (at MW)
Next Fight: 10/26/2013- vs. Javier Maciel (UNR)
Rose will be back on the Brook-Senchenko undercard in Sheffield, and will be fighting Argentine prospect Javier Maciel- certainly his toughest opponent since capturing the British title.
18) Jermell Charlo (14-14)
Last Fight: 6/8/2013- UD12 Demetrius Hopkins (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Charlo didn’t exactly build his fan base with the Hopkins snoozer, but he satisfied the “win today, look good tomorrow” equation, and earned a ranking for his trouble.
19) Guido Pitto (14-20)
Last Fight: 4/27/2013- W* (SD12) vs. Jack Culcay (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
A Culcay-Pitto rematch was postponed due to headliner Marco Huck’s elbow injury.  I’m assuming it’ll go down on the rescheduled card in early winter, if not before.
20) Kell Brook (9-9)
Last Fight: 7/13/2013- TKO8 Carson Jones (UNR)
Next Fight: 10/26/2013- vs. Vyacheslav Senchenko (UNR) (at WW?)
Brook gets Senchenko in late October in Sheffield.  Since it’s a non-title fight, there’s always the chance it could creep up over 147 and thus affect his ranking here.

 

The Week Ahead:  D-Day is Saturday in Vegas.

 

But before that, in the same town, we get a bit of an appetizer on Thursday, as blue chip undefeated prospects collide in both men’s toughest test by far, when Hugo Centeno, Jr. meets Julian Williams.  But even that card doesn’t stop there, as fringe contending undefeated prospect Jermall Charlo gets a showcase against mid-level Texas journeyman Rogelio de la Torre.

 

Now back to D-Day.  On the undercard- in fact the 3rd-billed fight on the card- #1 Carlos Molina looks to lift an alphabet belt from #5 Ishe Smith and give himself maybe some case to keep his top spot against the main event winner. 

 

But the big one is in the main event of the PPV extravaganza, as Welterweight Champion and pound-for-pound kingpin Floyd Mayweather, Jr. moves back up to 154 (or 152, anyway) to take on Mexican superstar and #2 contender Saul Alvarez.  I feel like this occasion merits a rare prediction from me.  Floyd wins.  It’s not that I don’t think he’s vulnerable to a strong aggressive opponent.  It’s just that I don’t think Canelo has shown that he can sustain the level of aggressiveness that, despite his doubtlessly far superior size, could trouble Floyd with any consistency.  He deserved to lose to a more nimble but much less slick fighter in Austin Trout, with Trout lacking 95% of Floyd’s big fight experience.  He simply lacks the consistent effort he would need to get the job done.

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