Archive for the Welterweight Category

Year-End Awards: Welterweight, 2013

Posted in Welterweight, Yearly Awards and Wrap Up with tags , , , , , , , on April 7, 2014 by danboxing
Welcome to my first Year-End Awards and Wrap-Up for the Welterweight Division.  First, a list of awards for the division.  Then, a look at the 20 fighters that did the best work in 2013 specifically, followed by a rundown of the year’s rankings history.  Dig in!

 

Welterweight Fighter of the Year: Timothy Bradley
Bradley certainly didn’t look destined for fighter of the year honors early in the year when he struggled to what should have been a draw in a slugfest with gatekeeper-level one-loss prospect Ruslan Provodnikov, but he managed to survive that encounter and went on to nick a decision over the clear #1 fighter in the division in Marquez.  Maidana is the runner-up.

 

Prospect of the Year: Kevin Bizier
Bizier technically took a loss on the year- not a typical credential for prospect of the year.  But the loss probably should have been a win, and it came against a top 20-caliber fighter in Jo Jo Dan.  He also threw in a stoppage of a post-prime Nate Campbell for good measure.  The runner up is Leonard Bundu, who would have been a rather old winner, had he won the honor.

 

Most Important Knockout of the Year: #14? Marcos Maidana TKO6 #4 Josesito Lopez
This is the fight among the highest-ranked contenders that ended in a stoppage. It made Maidana into a real player at welterweight, returning him to a status he had not enjoyed since moving up from 140, and setting up his epic conquest of Adrien Broner later in the year.

 

Most Sensational Knockout of the Year: #13 Keith Thurman TKO9 #6 Jesus Soto Karass
I generally like to pick one-punch knockouts that leave a guy helpless on the canvas as knockout of the year, but Thurman’s brilliant combination at center ring may very well have accomplished the same result had the ref not caught Soto Karass on his way to the canvas.  For a video of the fight, click on “TKO9” above.  I believe I’d pick Maidana over Lopez as the runner-up.

 

Match-Up of the Year: Champ Floyd Mayweather, Jr. vs. #4 Robert Guerrero
Ultimately it wasn’t nearly the most memorable fight of the year, but based on where the two fighters were ranked at the outset, it was far and away the highest-ranked fight of the year.  No other fight in the division was even close.

 

Fight of the Year: #17 Timothy Bradley UD12* Ruslan Provodnikov
This was an easy choice, as it was very likely the Fight of the Year in all of boxing.  Provodnikov brutalized Bradley early and late, but was solidly outboxed by the gutsy Bradley in between.  The only thing that could mar the fight just a bit was referee Pat Russell’s mistaken call of a slip on one of Provodnikov’s knockdowns- a call which prevented the correct call of a draw from being reached by the judges.

 

Upset of the Year: Shawn Porter UD12 #5 Devon Alexander
There were several upsets of note this year: Provodnikov’s performance against Bradley, Bradley’s defeat of Marquez…some even consider Maidana’s whipping of Broner an upset, though I certainly don’t.  But this one I really couldn’t see coming.  Porter had clearly lost to Alfonso Gomez in a previous fight, and needed two fights to overcome Julio Diaz.  The idea that he could compete with inconsistent but undeniably skilled Alexander had never occurred to me.  And yet he very nearly dominated the fight.

 

Comeback Fighter of the Year: Timothy Bradley
To pick the same guy for so many categories is probably not the most entertaining method, but I calls ’em like I sees ’em.  Bradley was laid low by the public reaction to his undeserved victory over Pacquiao, nearly got knocked out multiple times in a victory he was lucky to get against an opponent of far inferior rank in Provodnikov, and responded by doing no less than defeating Pacquiao’s conqueror, himself.  Now he sits at the top of the division, subject only to Mayweather.

 

Robbery of the Year: #17 Timothy Bradley UD12 Ruslan Provodnikov
There were four decisions this year that I disagreed with, mostly to a moderate degree.  Amir Khan’s decision victory over Julio Diaz was highly questionable.  I had it 114-112 for Diaz, but I think there’s a case to be made that Khan won an additional round which would make it even, and he was close to salvaging a 10-9 round in the 4th, in which he was knocked down, and while I gave Diaz a 10-8 without a knockdown in the 11th, it was a borderline call.  Therefore, if you were friendly to Khan, he may have edged it out by as much as 115-113.  Another such fight was Adrian Granados’ 10-round draw with Kermit Cintron.  I had it 96-94, and thought it possible that a judge could give Cintron as few as 1 round.  The draw was about the best possible result for Cintron, while judge John McCarthy shamefully scored it 97-93 Cintron.  Another close fight that went the wrong way was Jo Jo Dan vs. Kevin Bizier.  I had it 115-112 for Bizier, but with a lot of close rounds, I thought anything between 117-110 Bizier and 115-112 Dan would be reasonable.  The judges tilted, reasonably, in the direction of Dan to award him the split decision.  This leaves Bradley-Provodnikov.  I actually had it 114-113 for Bradley, as did two of the judges.  How is this a robbery, then?  Well, I only had that score because I restrained myself from going beyond what a real judge would be able to do to set things right.  I had already given Bradley both of the two arguable rounds in the fight, and he should have lost a point due to a knockdown in the 1st that Pat Russell ruled a slip.  Russell must have known he was wrong when Bradley could barely stand afterward, but by then he didn’t see fit to reverse himself.  But it was clearly a knockdown, and should have rendered a draw the closest possible score for Bradley, with reasonable judging.  Judges Marty Denkin and Jerry Cantu admirably provided said reasonable judging, while Raul Caiz, Sr. missed a round and had it 115-112 for Bradley.  Bradley-Provodnikov wins the award for one simple reason- it’s the only result of the year that I not only don’t agree with, but also don’t see as yielding an outcome that is defensible within the realm of reason, and for once the judges, by and large, are not to blame.

 

Now, for anyone that cares, I will rank the division based solely on the fighters’ 2013 accomplishments.  I will use the same criteria that I use to rank them overall (with victories, draws, or should-be victories and draws over top 50 opposition making one eligible), but will completely ignore all fights prior to 2013.

 

1) Timothy Bradley
Significant Results: Mar 16- UD12 W (should be Draw) vs. Prospect Ruslan Provodnikov.  Oct 12- W (SD12) vs. #1 Juan Manuel Marquez.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- May 19: Uncertain. May 20- Jun 23: #19. Jun 24- Jul 28: #18. Jul 29- Oct 13: #17. Oct 14- Dec 31: #1.
2) Marcos Maidana
Significant Results: Jun 8- TKO6 #4 Josesito Lopez.  Dec 14- UD12 LW Champion Adrien Broner.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- Jun 9: Uncertain. Jun 10- Oct 13: #5. Oct 14- Dec 8: #6. Dec 9-31: #4.
3) Keith Thurman
Significant Results: Mar 9- UD12 Fringe Contender Jan Zaveck.  Jul 27- KO10 Undefeated Prospect Diego Chaves.  Dec 14- TKO9 #6 Jesus Soto Karass.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- May 19: Uncertain. May 20- Jun 23: #16. Jun 24- Jul 28: #15. Jul 29- Oct 13: #12. Oct 14-20: #13. Oct 21- Nov 24: #12. Nov 25- Dec 15: #13. Dec 16-31: #5.
4) Shawn Porter
Significant Results: Sep 12- UD10 Gatekeeper Julio Diaz.  Dec 7- UD12 #5 Devon Alexander.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- Dec 8: Unranked. Dec 9-15: #5. Dec 16-31: #6.
5) Floyd Mayweather, Jr.
Significant Results: May 4- UD12 #4 Robert Guerrero.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- Dec 31: Champion.
6) Jesus Soto Karass
Significant Results: Jan 26- W (MD10) vs. #5 Selcuk Aydin (at 149).  Jul 27- TKO12 #7 Andre Berto.  Dec 14- L (TKO9) vs. #13 Keith Thurman.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- May 19: Uncertain. May 20- Jun 23: #12. Jun 24- Jul 28: #11. Jul 29- Oct 13: #6. Oct 14- Dec 8: #7. Dec 9-15: #6. Dec 16-31: #12.
7) Ruslan Provodnikov
Significant Results: Mar 16- UD12 L (should be draw) vs. Contender Timothy Bradley.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- May 19: Uncertain. May 20- Jun 23: #20. Jun 24- Jul 28: #19. Jul 29- Oct 20: #18. Oct 21- Nov 24: #17. Nov 25- Dec 1: #18. Dec 2-8: #17. Dec 9-31: #18.
8) Manny Pacquiao
Significant Results: Nov 24- UD12 #4 JWW Brandon Rios.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- Oct 13: #2. Oct 14- Dec 31: #3.
9) Adrien Broner
Significant Results: Jun 22- W (SD12) vs. Gatekeeper Paulie Malignaggi.  Dec 14- L (UD12) vs. #4 Marcos Maidana. 
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- Dec 31: Ranked only at Lightweight.
10) Paulie Malignaggi
Significant Results: Jun 22- L (SD12) vs. LW Champion Adrien Broner.  Dec 7- UD12 JWW Contender Zab Judah.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- Dec 8: Unranked. Dec 9-31: #14.
11) Shane Mosley
Significant Results: May 18- UD12 Fringe Contender Pablo Cesar Cano.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- May 19: Unranked. May 20- Oct 13: #3. Oct 14- Dec 8: #4. Dec 9-31: Unranked (Retired).
12) Kevin Bizier
Significant Results: Feb 8- RTD8 Gatekeeper Nate Campbell.  Nov 30- SD12 L (should be win) vs. #18* Jo Jo Dan.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- Dec 1: Unranked. Dec 2-8: #20. Dec 9-31: Unranked.
13) Leonard Bundu
Significant Results: Apr 6- KO11 Gatekeeper Rafal Jackiewicz.  Dec 14- TKO12 Gatekeeper Lee Purdy.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- May 19: Uncertain. May 20- Jun 23: Unranked. Jun 24- Jul 28: #20. Jul 29- Sep 15: #19. Sep 16- Oct 20: #20. Oct 21- Nov 24: #19. Nov 25- Dec 1: #20. Dec 2-15: Unranked. Dec 16-31: #20.
14) Luis Carlos Abregu
Significant Results: Apr 27- UD10 Fringe Contender Antonin Decarie.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- May 19: Uncertain. May 20- Jun 23: #14. Jun 24- Jul 28: #13. Jul 29- Oct 13: #14. Oct 14-20: #15. Oct 21- Nov 24: #14. Nov 25- Dec 8: #15. Dec 9-31: #16.
15) Jessie Vargas

Significant Results: Mar 16- UD10 Gatekeeper Wale Omotoso.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- May 19: Uncertain. May 20- Jul 28: Unranked. Jul 29- Sep 15: #20. Sep 16- Oct 20: Unranked. Oct 21- Nov 24: #20. Nov 25- Dec 31: Unranked.
16) Kell Brook
Significant Results: Oct 26- TKO4 Gatekeeper Vyacheslav Senchenko.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- May 19: Uncertain. May 20- Oct 13: #8. Oct 14- Dec 8: #9. Dec 9-31: #8.
17) Devon Alexander
Significant Results: May 18- RTD7 Gatekeeper Lee Purdy.  Dec 7- L (UD12) vs. Prospect Shawn Porter.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- Jun 9: Uncertain. Jun 10- Oct 13: #4. Oct 14- Dec 8: #5. Dec 9-31: #9.
18) Jo Jo Dan
Significant Results: Nov 30- SD12 W (should be loss) vs. Undefeated Prospect Kevin Bizier.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- May 19: Uncertain. May 20- Dec 1: Unranked. Dec 2-8: #19. Dec 9-15: #20. Dec 16-31: Unranked.
19) Adrian Granados
Significant Results: Mar 22- Robbery Draw (should be win) vs. Gatekeeper Kermit Cintron.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- Dec 31: Unranked.
20) Bethuel Ushona
Significant Results: Oct 5- UD12 Gatekeeper Kaizer Mabuza.
2013 Rankings History: Jan 1- Dec 31: Unranked.

 

The following fighters could be found in the top 20 at various parts of the year, but were not among the top 20 performers at the weight this year.  Naturally, most of them did not improve their standing as a result:

 

Juan Manuel Marquez– Jan 1- Oct 13: #1. Oct 14- Dec 31: #2.

 

Robert Guerrero– Jan 1- May 19: Uncertain. May 20- Jul 28: #6. Jul 29- Oct 13: #7. Oct 14- Dec 8: #8. Dec 9-31: #7.

 

Andre Bert0– Jan 1- May 19: Uncertain. May 20- Jul 28: #7. Jul 29- Oct 13: #11. Oct 14-20: #12. Oct 21- Nov 24: #11. Nov 25- Dec 15: #12. Dec 16-31: #13.

 

Randall Bailey– Jan 1- May 19: Uncertain. May 20-Oct 13: #9. Oct 14-20: #10. Oct 21- Nov 24: Unranked (Inactive). Nov 25- Dec 31: #10.

 

Josesito Lopez– Jan 1- Jun 9: Uncertain. Jun 10- Oct 13: #10. Oct 14-20: #11. Oct 21- Nov 24: #10. Nov 25- Dec 31: #11.

 

Victor Ortiz– Jan 1- Jun 9: Uncertain. Jun 10-23: #11. Jun 24- Dec 31: Unranked (Inactive).

 

Chris van Heerden– Jan 1- May 19: Uncertain. May 20- Jun 23: #13. Jun 24- Jul 28: #12. Jul 29- Oct 13: #13. Oct 14-20: #14. Oct 21- Nov 24: #13. Nov 25- Dec 8: #14. Dec 9-31: #15.

 

Alfonso Gomez– Jan 1- May 19: Uncertain. May 20- Jun 23: #15. Jun 24- Jul 28: #14. Jul 29- Dec 31: Unranked (Inactive).

 

Jan Zaveck– Jan 1- May 19: Uncertain. May 20- Jun 23: #17. Jun 24- Jul 28: #16. Jul 29- Oct 13: #15. Oct 14-20: #16. Oct 21- Nov 24: #15. Nov 25- Dec 8: #16. Dec 9-31: #17.

 

Selcuk Aydin– Jan 1- May 19: Uncertain. May 20- Jun 23: #18. Jun 24- Jul 28: #17. Jul 29- Oct 13: #16. Oct 14-20: #17. Oct 21- Nov 24: #16. Nov 25- Dec 1: #17. Dec 2-31: Unranked.

 

Pablo Cesar Cano– Jan 1- Sep 15: Unranked. Sep 16- Oct 20: #19. Oct 21- Nov 24: #18. Nov 25- Dec 1: #19. Dec 2-8: #18. Dec 9-31: #19.