Super Middleweight: 2014, Mar 10-16

No action to report from last week.

 

Dan’s Top 20
Champ: Andre Ward (117-251-251)
Last Fight: 11/16/2013- UD12 #13 Edwin Rodriguez
Next Fight: Unknown
Ward says his manager is working on his next fight despite his lawsuit against promoter Dan Goossen.  He had indicated interest in Golovkin, but the Kazakh’s own trainer recently said his fighter is not ready for that fight.
1) Carl Froch (94-404-404)
Last Fight: 11/23/2013- TKO9 #8 George Groves
Next Fight: 5/31/2014- vs. #8 George Groves
There is talk of a record gate when Froch meets Groves in a highly anticipated rematch in a London soccer stadium at the end of May.
2) Arthur Abraham (2-229-229)
Last Fight: 3/1/2014- W (SD12) vs. #2 Robert Stieglitz
Next Fight: Unknown
Abraham is back near the top again after defeating Stieglitz convincingly in  the rubber match.
3) Robert Stieglitz (2-237-237)
Last Fight: 3/1/2014- L (SD12) vs. #4 Arthur Abraham
Next Fight: Unknown
It’s back to the drawing board for Stieglitz, though his resume still compares favorably to the field.
4) Mikkel Kessler (2-483-483)
Last Fight: 5/25/2013- L (UD12) vs. #1 Carl Froch
Next Fight: Unknown
Kessler is reportedly discussing a return with Sauerland, but there is no obvious opponent available for him at present.
5) Brandon Gonzales (37-37-37)
Last Fight: 11/16/2013- UD10 Jonathan Nelson (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Gonzales was said to have reached a deal to fight Vlasov, but Vlasov has scheduled another fight, and it’s been hard to find any mention of the match since it was reportedly made.
6) Thomas Oosthuizen (24-145-193)
Last Fight: 11/9/2013- W* (MD12) vs. #13 Ezequiel Maderna
Next Fight: Unknown
Oosthuizen was yanked from his intended January 18 fight with Eleider Alvarez and released by his promoter after a bicycle accident and reportedly being hopelessly out of shape about 2 weeks before the fight.
7) Ezequiel Maderna (18-18-63)
Last Fight: 11/9/2013- L* (MD12) vs. #6 Thomas Oosthuizen
Next Fight: Unknown
I doubt he’ll get much love from the alphabets for his effort, but I think you could make a better case for him winning than losing against Oosthuizen, though I had it a draw personally.
8) George Groves (18-65-87)
Last Fight: 11/23/2013- L (TKO9) vs. #1 Carl Froch
Next Fight: 5/31/2014- vs. #1 Carl Froch
See Froch’s notes, above.
9) Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr. (2-2-2)
Last Fight: 3/1/2014- UD10 #15 MW Bryan Vera
Next Fight: Unknown
Chavez may have earned some fans back in the Vera rematch, after the loss of said fans was made apparent by the poor gate at the Alamodome that night.  There is talk of a big fight with Golovkin, maybe for sometime in the summer or fall.
10) Bryan Vera (2-2-2)
Last Fight: 3/1/2014- L (UD10) vs. Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr. (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Even in defeat, Vera has regained a ranking at 168 and is- at least temporarily- ranked in 2 divisions.   There are also credible-looking reports to the effect that he broke his left hand early in the fight, for what it’s worth.
11) James DeGale (2-126)
Last Fight: 3/1/2014- TKO11 Gevorg Khatchikian (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Dirty dealings in the dirty WBC.  DeGale was ordered to fight Badou Jack for the right to fight Bika for the alphabet’s title.  Jack lost his tune-up fight, while DeGale won.  Obviously DeGale should have expected to either fight Bika directly, or at least have another eliminator opponent set up.  Instead, according to the Bristol Post, he is being completely passed over in favor of J.C. Chavez.  Don’t get me wrong.  Chavez is marginally the more proven fighter (though there are multiple non-titlists that are better than either), but it’s just another example of an alphabet not living up to the logical conclusions of its own dictates.
12) Christopher Rebrasse (2-40)
Last Fight: 12/6/2013- UD6 George Kandelaki (UNR)
Next Fight: 3/22/2014- vs. Mouhamed Ali Ndiaye (UNR)
Rebrasse will get a March 22 rematch against Ndiaye that is hardly needed, as Rebrasse dominated the first fight on his way to being robbed.
13) Sakio Bika (2-362)
Last Fight: 12/7/2013- Draw (SD12) vs. Anthony Dirrell (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
With both Anthony Dirrell and James DeGale having rather legitimate claims to the spot, the WBC has instead, it appears, installed JC Chavez as Bika’s mandatory.  Bika seems happy with the decision, as it will no doubt net him a huge payday.
14) Maxim Vlasov (2-70)
Last Fight: 12/5/2013- KO4 Maxell Taylor (UNR) (at LHW)
Next Fight: 3/15/2014- vs. Derrick Findley (UNR)
Derrick Findley has apparently replaced Henry Buchanan for Vlasov’s scheduled fight this weekend, which is inexplicably getting absolutely no buzz online.  Findley is a better fighter than Buchanan, and this one just got intriguing, for me.
15) Edwin Rodriguez (2-60)
Last Fight: 11/16/2013- L (UD12) vs. Champ Andre Ward
Next Fight: Unknown
According to his trainer Ronnie Shields, they might be looking to fight a top-15 level light heavyweight, and have absolutely no intention to ever try to make 168 again.  He’ll be on the shelf for a little while due to bone chip-removal surgery on his elbow in December.
 16) Andy Lee (2-43)
Last Fight: 11/23/2013-TKO2 Ferenc Hafner (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
After negotiations for an April 26 fight with Golovkin were terminated, there is now word that an April 24 fight with Matthew Macklin might be in the cards.  Macklin, however, says he is focused on landing a rematch with Sturm.
17) Gilberto Ramirez (2-6)
Last Fight: 2/1/2014- TKO1 #19 Don Mouton
Next Fight: Unknown
Much like many of his peers in the 168 pound rankings, Ramirez might really be a middleweight, but nevertheless has a solid resume in this division.
18) Ryota Murata (2-29)
Last Fight: 2/22/2014- TKO4 Carlos Nascimento (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Bob Arum plans to have Murata in action at Singapore this year according to Dan Rafael, but I don’t have any further details.
19) Anthony Dirrell (2-14)
Last Fight: 12/7/2013- Draw (SD12) vs. #11 Sakio Bika
Next Fight: Unknown
His hard-fought draw with Sakio Bika gained Dirrell a measure of redemption for what pretty clearly should have been a loss against Don Mouton, and has him back in the hot prospect category.  He’s called for a rematch (good idea) and a fight with Golovkin (bad idea).
20) Hadillah Mohoumadi (2-54)
Last Fight: 11/30/2013- TKO5 Bartlomiej Grafka (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown

 

The Week Ahead: 
Saturday
Rocky Fielding vs. Charles Adamu; Liverpool, England; Sky (UK)
Fielding is a Liverpool native and an undefeated prospect.  Adamu is a low-level Ghanaian gatekeeper, and figures to be nothing more than an easy win for a popular local fighter.  

 

#14 Maxim Vlasov vs. Derrick Findley; Oxnard, California; Off TV
This is a pretty good match-up not to be televised.  Findley was robbed of a win over Curtis Stevens less than a year ago, and probably deserved the nod over J’Leon Love, as well.  He’s a journeyman in the eyes of many, but only because he gets the shaft routinely from judges.  As for Vlasov, well, he’s a serious prospect and fringe contender.  I desperately hope a video surfaces by the time I report on the fight.
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