Cruiserweight: 2014, May 26- Jun 1

Friday in Krasnodar, Russia, undefeated Russian Dmitry Kudryashov got the knockout everyone expected, though it took a fair amount longer than I would have thought.  Kudryashov has made his reputation detonating gatekeeper-type competition in short order.  Bacurin is a journeyman- a step down from that- and yet he lasted into the 7th, having gone down just once in the first 6.  In fairness to both, it should probably be noted that Bacurin had been stopped only once prior, and that that was at heavyweight against Johnathon Banks.  Still, Kudryashov looked a bit disinterested almost throughout the contest.  Ultimately, he caught Bacurin in the 7th and did a decent job of following up on that.  In total, he scored 3 knockdowns in the 7th alone, and Bacurin stayed down on all fours until the 10 count had passed.

 

Mark Flanagan notched a minor upset down under, winning a split decision over gatekeeper Daniel Ammann in Townsville, Australia on Saturday.  Scores were 97-93, 97-95, and 95-96.  So far, I haven’t had any luck finding a video.  With the win, Flanagan captured the vacant Australian title.

 

Flanagan certainly enters the top 50, but nothing above affects the top 20 at this time. 

 

Dan’s Top 20 (weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: None
1) Marco Huck (2-390-390)
Last Fight:1/25/2014- TKO6 #5 Firat Arslan
Next Fight: Unknown
Huck’s TV deal in Germany is set to expire, he’s reportedly leaving Sauerland, and has met with HBO about coming to the US.
2) Yoan Pablo Hernandez (2-205-205)
Last Fight: 11/23/2013- TKO10 #12 Alexander Alekseev
Next Fight: Unknown
Hernandez’s fight with Kolodziej- originally postponed- has now been cancelled due to an illness to Hernandez.
3) Denis Lebedev (2-225-225)
Last Fight: 5/17/2013- L (TKO11) vs. Guillermo Jones (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Given his legitimate injury that shelved him for a big chunk of the year and the fact that his opponent screwed him over via PED use, I’m going to use my discretion and leave Lebedev ranked at this point.  Still, his best work is simply getting too old to stay at the very top.  Some reports have him returning in the fall against Pawel Kolodziej.
4) Krzysztof Wlodarczyk (37-466-466)
Last Fight: 12/6/2013- TKO6 #9 Giacobbe Fragomeni
Next Fight: Unknown
Wlodarczyk probably won’t return until the fall, with Drozd and BJ Flores being considered.
5) Thabiso Mchunu (18-43-81)
Last Fight: 1/24/2014- UD10 Olanrewaju Durodola (UNR)
Next Fight: 6/6/2014- vs. Julio Cesar Dos Santos (UNR)
Mchunu will stay busy with upper-level journeyman Julio Cesar Santos of Brazil on June 6 in South Africa.
6) Firat Arslan (18-107-150)
Last Fight: 1/25/2014- L (TKO6) vs. #3 Marco Huck
Next Fight: Unknown
Having visibly regressed since his excellent first effort against Huck, it might be time for the 43 year-old Arslan to consider retirement.
7) Grigory Drozd (27-34-81)
Last Fight: 3/15/2014- KO1 Jeremy Ouanna (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
See Wlodarczyk’s notes, above.
8) Ola Afolabi (27-272-272)
Last Fight: 11/2/2013- W* (MD12) vs. Lukasz Janik (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Afolabi is now slated for an eventual eliminator with Pawel Kolodziej for a shot at Yoan Pablo Hernandez.  K2 has won the purse bids, and the fight is currently in the process of being worked out.  It’s targeted for the summer.
9) Giacobbe Fragomeni (27-37-289)
Last Fight: 4/26/2014- vs. Olegs Lopajevs (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
The fight with Lopajevs was purely a stay-busy contest, but he’s talking about another title shot even at 44 years old.
10) Ilunga Makabu (5-5-46)
Last Fight: 2/1/2014- TKO2 Ruben Angel Mino (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Makabu’s excellent matchup with Masternak has been scrapped due to a dispute between the Congolese contender and his promoter.
11) Santander Silgado (5-30)
Last Fight: 11/1/2013- TKO2 #20 Steve Herelius
Next Fight: 5/30/2014- vs. Rakhim Chakhkiev (UNR)
Silgado, despite his rank, will be a short-notice opponent for one-loss prospect Rakhim Chakhkiev this weekend.
12) Mateusz Masternak (5-113)
Last Fight: 4/12/2014- UD8 Stjepan Vugdelija (UNR)
Next Fight: 6/21/2014- vs. Youri Kayembre Kalenga (UNR)
Masternak’s fight with Makabu fell through, and he’ll instead be fighting crude and inconsistent one-loss prospect Youri Kalenga.
13) Lukasz Janik (5-30)
Last Fight: 11/2/2013- L* (MD12) vs. #7 Ola Afolabi
Next Fight: Unknown
Janik would like a well-deserved rematch with Afolabi.
14) Ovill McKenzie (5-7)
Last Fight: 4/12/2014- KO5 #18 Tony Conquest
Next Fight: 6/7/2014- vs. Jon-Lewis Dickinson (UNR)
After capturing the Commonwealth title with an upset knockout of Tony Conquest, McKenzie will have a quick turnaround, as he’ll fight Jon-Lewis Dickinson for the British title on June 7.
15) Danie Venter (5-37)
Last Fight: 9/21/2013- KO1 Shawn Cox (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
16) Dmytro Kucher (5-100)
Last Fight: 7/13/2013- L (MD12) vs. Ilunga Makabu (UNR)
Next Fight: 5/31/2014- vs. Paata Berikashvili (UNR)
Kucher will be featured on May 31 in Odessa, Ukraine against a low-level opponent.
17) Nuri Seferi (5-23)
Last Fight: 5/16/2014- UD12 Tamas Lodi (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Seferi looked pretty decent against Lodi, who fought the wrong fight.  At this point, he ought to give Perdomo a rematch.
18) Gusmyr Perdomo (5-7)
Last Fight: 4/11/2014- Robbery Loss (should be draw) vs. #15 Nuri Seferi
Next Fight: Unknown
Perdomo deserved at least a draw against Seferi, but the judges summoned just enough coincidental incompetence to take it from him.
19) Yunier Dorticos (5-6)
Last Fight: 4/16/2014- KO4 Eric Fields (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
20) Krzysztof Glowacki (5-5)
Last Fight: 12/14/2013- TKO9 Varol Vekiloglu (UNR)

Next Fight: Unknown
Glowacki is the top contender for the title held by Huck, but might never get that exact shot, since Huck is making noise about moving up.

 

THE WEEK AHEAD: 
Friday
#11 Santander Silgado vs. Rakhim Chakhkiev; Moscow, Russia; Boytsovskiy Klub (Russia)
Chakhkiev looked like a future top contender in his near-miss against Wlodarczyk.  Silgado hasn’t really been as visible and probably isn’t nearly as good, but he does come off an early stoppage win over the once-formidable Steve Herelius.  Unfortunately for those looking to back the Colombian, he took the fight on very short notice.  That’s a bit disappointing, because it otherwise could have been an intriguing fight.  Still is to some extent, I guess, though Silgado has put himself behind the 8-ball on the circumstances.  As for Chakhkiev, his manager clearly deserves some kind of award.

 

Saturday
#16 Dmytro Kucher vs. Paata Berikashvili; Odessa, Ukraine; IHTEP (Ukraine)
This is a stay-busy fight for the fairly inactive Kucher.  Berikashvili is a low-level Georgian whose record hovers around .500. 

 

Oleksandr Usyk vs. Cesar Crenz; Odessa, Ukraine; IHTEP (Ukraine)
Not a bad early-career test for the impressive-looking Usyk.  Crenz is an Argentine journeyman who has sometimes found himself in the top 50 during his career.  Usyk is in just his 4th fight as a pro, but is already clearly in that company.
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