Archive for Alejandro Valori

Cruiserweight: 2014, Jul 7-13

Posted in Cruiserweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on November 20, 2014 by danboxing
No notable cruiserweight fights took place last week.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: None
1) Marco Huck (8-396-396)
Last Fight:1/25/2014- TKO6 #5 Firat Arslan
Next Fight: 8/30/2014- vs. Mirko Larghetti (UNR)
As it turns out, Huck’s August 30 opponent will be Mirko Larghetti, the Italian prospect he was scheduled to fight earlier this year before injury scuttled the bout.
2) Yoan Pablo Hernandez (8-211-211)
Last Fight: 11/23/2013- TKO10 #12 Alexander Alekseev
Next Fight: 8/16/2014- vs. #6 Firat Arslan
Hernandez is set to fight Arslan on August 16, in Erfurt, Germany.  
3) Denis Lebedev (8-231-231)
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 (43-472-472)
Last Fight: 12/6/2013- TKO6 #9 Giacobbe Fragomeni
Next Fight: Unknown
It’s looking like Wlodarczyk will be back in August, possibly against BJ Flores, though Makabu’s win over Glen Johnson has him in position for a shot, as well.
5) Thabiso Mchunu (24-49-87)
Last Fight: 1/24/2014- UD10 Olanrewaju Durodola (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Mchunu’s scheduled fight with Brazilian prospect was scrapped on just a day’s notice due to the surprise withdrawal of the card’s sponsors.
6) Firat Arslan (24-113-156)
Last Fight: 6/7/2014- UD8 Tamas Bajzath (UNR)
Next Fight: 8/16/2014- vs. #2 Yoan Pablo Hernandez
See Hernandez’s notes, above.
7) Grigory Drozd (33-40-87)
Last Fight: 3/15/2014- KO1 Jeremy Ouanna (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
8) Rakhim Chakhkiev (6-6-6)
Last Fight: 5/30/2014- UD12 #11 Santander Silgado
Next Fight: Unknown
Chakhkiev has finally cashed in a high-level win to go with his hype and promise.  Most likely another title shot is not far off.
9) Ilunga Makabu (2-2-52)
Last Fight: 6/28/2014- TKO9 Glen Johnson (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Makabu didn’t look great for most of his fight with 45 year-old Glen Johnson, but he had a lot more in the tank than the old veteran, and became only the 2nd guy to get him out of there.
10) Ola Afolabi (2-278-278)
Last Fight: 11/2/2013- W* (MD12) vs. Lukasz Janik (UNR)
Next Fight: 7/26/2014- vs. Unknown Opponent
The rumor that is Pawel Kolodziej is once again involved in a fight that’s not coming off, as he withdrew from his July 26 date with Afolabi, who is now in search of a replacement.
11) Lukasz Janik (2-36)
Last Fight: 6/28/2014- UD10 Rico Hoye (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Janik did enough to beat a perhaps better-than-expected Rico Hoye, but didn’t exactly light the world on fire in doing so.
12) Ovill McKenzie (2-13)
Last Fight: 6/7/2014- TKO2 Jon-Lewis Dickinson (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
After blowing out the British Champion, McKenzie has his sites set on a European or perhaps World belt.  He wants to fight Marco Huck most of all.
13) Youri Kalenga (2-3)
Last Fight: 6/21/2014- W (SD12*) vs. #12 Mateusz Masternak
Next Fight: Unknown
How a guy can get dominated by Arturs Kulikauskis, only to come back and dominate Mateusz Masternak within about 9 months, is beyond me.  Still, the former fight aside, he’s got another pretty nice win on his resume right before that, over Iago Kiladze, a then-undefeated prospect.
14) Giacobbe Fragomeni (2-295)
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.
15) Mateusz Masternak (3-119)
Last Fight: 6/21/2014- L (SD12*) vs. Youri Kalenga (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Having now lost to his last two decent opponents, the future of Masternak, who looked like a can’t-miss talent not long ago, seems very much in doubt.
16) Santander Silgado (3-36)
Last Fight: 5/30/2014- L (UD12) vs. Rakhim Chakhkiev (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
I don’t want to say Silgado made it easy for Chakhkiev, because it looked relatively difficult, but he sure didn’t help himself by taking a fight with a fringe contending Olympic Gold Medalist on 2 weeks’ notice.
17) Danie Venter (3-43)
Last Fight: 9/21/2013- KO1 Shawn Cox (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Venter’s June 6 fight was cancelled a day in advance due to a withdrawal of the card’s sponsors.
18) Dmytro Kucher (3-106)
Last Fight: 7/13/2013- L (MD12) vs. Ilunga Makabu (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Kucher will be removed next week unless he schedules a fight before then.
19) Nuri Seferi (3-29)
Last Fight: 5/16/2014- UD12 Tamas Lodi (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
I took Seferi’s stated desire to fight Marco Huck as idle chatter, but that fight now looks likely for August 30, deserved or not.
20) Gusmyr Perdomo (3-13)
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.

 

THE WEEK AHEAD: 
Thursday
Yunier Dorticos vs. Edison Miranda; Miami, Florida; FS1 (US)
Dorticos is a fringe contending undefeated Cuban who has been ranked in the top 20 when the division ebbs a bit.  Miranda is a former middleweight contender who has certainly seen better days in his career.  At cruiserweight in 2014, he’s basically an upper-level journeyman.  Dorticos comes off the two best wins of his career back-to-back in Hamilton Ventura and especially Eric Fields.  This would probably be his 3rd-best.  Miranda will be making his debut as anything like a full-fledged cruiserweight, and has lost 4 of his last 5, all at 175.

 

Saturday
#5 LHW Tony Bellew vs. Julio Cesar Dos Santos; Liverpool, England; Sky (UK)
This figures to be the final tune-up for Bellew before he meets Nathan Cleverly in a big-money grudge match in the fall.  Dos Santos is an upper-level journeyman who is right on the borderline of the top 50.  The last time he fought anywhere near Bellew’s level, he was unanimously shut out over 12 rounds by Dmytro Kucher.  He also has a majority decision loss to a journeyman back in 2012.

 

#9 LHW Nathan Cleverly vs. Alejandro Valori; Liverpool, England; Sky (UK)
Cleverly probably has a bit tougher an opponent on his hands than Bellew, as Valori is a veteran gatekeeper with a couple top 50-level wins of his own in Argentina.  That being said, he has also lost at a relatively low level at times.  If Cleverly has any business competing at this weight, he should handle Valori easily, as even natural light heavyweight prospect Marcos Ahumada managed to notch a win with him.  If he’s too small for cruiser, there’s a reasonable chance that Valori will be able to prove it.

Cruiserweight: 2014, Mar 3-9

Posted in Cruiserweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on July 23, 2014 by danboxing
Undefeated Cuban Yunier Dorticos had perhaps an easier-than-expected evening’s work on his hands with unbeaten Brazilian Hamilton Ventura on Friday in San Diego.  Dorticos dismantled the overmatched Ventura, flooring him thrice en route to a first round knockout.  It is Dorticos’ best win, and his first over a top-50 opponent.

 

Meanwhile, in San Luis, Argentina, Alejandro Valori was vindicated to cap off a trilogy that to this point hadn’t really gone his way against the less-experienced and naturally smaller Marcos Ahumada.  It was a very close fight- I had Valori up 67-66 when the end came.  That ending, as it happened, was rather bizarre.  In the 5th, Valori was docked a point- completely inappropriately- for accidental head clashes.  After that happened, Ahumada (who appeared to be tiring) began acting and trying to claim a headbutt virtually every time Valori got close to him.  Even the ref who had unjustly taken the point in the first place quickly caught on to Ahumada’s blunt attempts at deception, and so he was prepared when, in the middle of the 7th round, Ahumada went down claiming a low blow, and refused to continue, despite the referee’s commands.  I don’t speak Spanish, but my best understanding is that the referee consulted the tape and discovered that there was no low blow, whereupon he disqualified Ahumada.  I think it’s fair to say that Ahumada disgraced himself by his actions.

 

In a division where not a lot of guys have unequivocally positive records, the Ventura demolition is enough to prompt Dorticos’ debut at #20.  Valori is not quite so fortunate.  True, he beat a guy I had unofficially ranked #23 last week, but that positioning was entirely based on his having defeated Valori, himself.  Prior to that, Ahumada had done nothing, and he’s done nothing but give the win back since.  Neverthless, the previously down-and-out Valori does get a measure of vindication from avenging the loss, though it can’t quite put him back where he was before- which is a borderline ranked contender.  He’s right around #30 now in my book among qualified fighters, while Ahumada slips into the early 30s, himself.  Last week’s #20 Rakhim Chakhkiev is forced out with Dorticos’ emergence.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: None
1) Denis Lebedev (32-213-213)
Last Fight: 5/17/2013- L (TKO11) vs. Guillermo Jones (UNR)
Next Fight: 4/19/2014- vs. Guillermo Jones (UNR)
Lebedev-Jones II appears to be more or less a done deal for April 19 in Moscow.
2) Marco Huck (6-378-378)
Last Fight:1/25/2014- TKO6 #5 Firat Arslan
Next Fight: 3/29/2014- vs. Unknown Opponent
Huck is stepping in to headline a March 29 card in Berlin, after Yoan Pablo Hernandez was forced to withdraw from the card due to illness.  No opponent yet.
3) Yoan Pablo Hernandez (6-193-193)
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.
4) Krzysztof Wlodarczyk (25-454-454)
Last Fight: 12/6/2013- TKO6 #9 Giacobbe Fragomeni
Next Fight: Unknown
Wlodarczyk had a relatively easy time in his third fight with Fragomeni, and is interested in Huck, Hernandez, Afolabi, Drozd, and Chakhkiev for his next fight.  More recently, he’s being openly pursued by Mchunu.
5) Thabiso Mchunu (6-31-69)
Last Fight: 1/24/2014- UD10 Olanrewaju Durodola (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
See Wlodarczyk’s notes, above.
6) Firat Arslan (6-95-138)
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 (15-22-69)
Last Fight: 10/5/2013- TKO11 #13 Mateusz Masternak
Next Fight: 3/15/2014- vs. Jeremy Ouanna (UNR)
Drozd will defend his European title in March against solid French journeyman Jeremy Ouanna, though Wlodarczyk’s team seems to think they might get Drozd in their next fight.
8) Ola Afolabi (15-260-260)
Last Fight: 11/2/2013- W* (MD12) vs. Lukasz Janik (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
An alphabet eliminator has been ordered between Afolabi and unbeaten but unproven Italian prospect Mirko Larghetti.
9) Giacobbe Fragomeni (15-25-277)
Last Fight: 12/6/2013- L (TKO6) vs. #4 Krzysztof Wlodarczyk
Next Fight: Unknown
I really hope that Fragomeni will call it a career.  
10) Silvio Branco (15-15-103)
Last Fight: 7/6/2013- W (TD10) vs. Juho Haapoja (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
According to Rakhim Chakhkiev’s team, Branco never responded to their offer for a March 15 fight, and Chakhkiev may instead fight Seferi.
11) Ilunga Makabu (15-34)
Last Fight: 2/1/2014- TKO2 Ruben Angel Mino (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Makabu will no doubt look for a big fight after his last one was changed into a stay-busy outing without his consent.
12) Santander Silgado (13-18)
Last Fight: 11/1/2013- TKO2 #20 Steve Herelius
Next Fight: Unknown
Silgado is being slammed by his own manager after he declined an arranged fight with Thabiso Mchunu.
13) Mateusz Masternak (13-101)
Last Fight: 2/1/2014- KO4 Sandro Siproshvili (UNR)
Next Fight: 4/12/2014- vs. Unknown Opponent
Masternak will be back on April 12 at Esbjerg, Denmark. 
14) Lukasz Janik (13-18)
Last Fight: 11/2/2013- L* (MD12) vs. #7 Ola Afolabi
Next Fight: Unknown
Janik would like a well-deserved rematch with Afolabi.
15) Nuri Seferi (11-11)
Last Fight: 12/20/2013- W (DQ7*) vs. Steve Herelius (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Seferi originally expected to fight April 11,  then was in and then out of a May fight with Chakhkiev.  With the latter news, it’s unclear what his current status is.
16) Danie Venter (6-25)
Last Fight: 9/21/2013- KO1 Shawn Cox (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
I must admit I wrote Venter off when he lost a bit of an upset to Mchunu last year, but Mchunu has proven to be something of a world beater since, and Venter’s overall resume is quietly starting to look pretty solid.
17) Dmytro Kucher (6-88)
Last Fight: 7/13/2013- L (MD12) vs. Ilunga Makabu (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
18) Tony Conquest (2-2)
Last Fight: 2/22/2014- UD12 Daniel Ammann (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Conquest is set to fight in London on April 12, and is hoping to fight for the British title in the foreseeable future.
19) Krzysztof Glowacki (2-32)
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.
20) Yunier Dorticos (1-1)
Last Fight: 2/28/2014- KO1 Hamilton Ventura (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Dorticos- long considered a promising prospect- has now arrived.
 
 

 

THE WEEK AHEAD: 
Saturday
Juan Carlos Gomez vs. Ivica Bacurin; Kecskemet, Hungary; Sport 1 (Hungary)
German-based Cuban Gomez is 40 years old.  He last fought a top 50 opponent very nearly 5 years ago when he was stopped by Vitali Klitsckho.  He last fought at cruiserweight in November 2001.  Bacurin is a mid-level Croatian journeyman.  This might give us a little glimpse at whether or not Gomez has anything left or not, but there’s not a ton of drama aside from that.

Cruiserweight: 2013, Dec 16-22

Posted in Cruiserweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on March 5, 2014 by danboxing
Friday in San Isidro, Argentina, gatekeeper Alejandro Valori knocked out Ruben Ponce, an abysmal journeyman he’d already beaten twice by decision.  The knockout came in round 4, which was the number of rounds both of their prior fights were set for.

 

The following night in Wolcz, Poland, #19 Krzysztof Glowacki brutally beat durable journeyman Varol Vekiloglu for 9 rounds.  Vekiloglu took a good shot, but that was about it.  Most guys would have been knocked out inside of 3 or 4 rounds by the heavy artillery he was getting hit with, but he hung in there.  That being said, he only hit Glowacki with about one or two clean punches the whole fight, so it was tenuous even as a moral victory.

 

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) Denis Lebedev (21-202-202)
Last Fight: 5/17/2013- L (TKO11) vs. Guillermo Jones (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
The rematch with Jones, according to Lebedev’s promoter, is all but done for mid-March in Moscow.
2) Yoan Pablo Hernandez (66-182-182)
Last Fight: 11/23/2013- TKO10 #12 Alexander Alekseev
Next Fight: Unknown
Hernandez still seems a little vulnerable, needing his power to bail him out a little against Alekseev.
3) Marco Huck (14-367-367)
Last Fight: 6/8/2013- W (MD12) vs. #5 Ola Afolabi
Next Fight: 1/25/2014- vs. #5 Firat Arslan
Huck-Arslan II has a new date of January 25 after Huck suffered a hand injury.
4) Krzysztof Wlodarczyk (14-443-443)
Last Fight: 12/6/2013- TKO6 #9 Giacobbe Fragomeni
Next Fight: Unknown
Wlodarczyk had a relatively easy time in his third fight with Fragomeni, and is interested in Huck, Hernandez, Afolabi, Drozd, and Chakhkiev for his next fight.
5) Firat Arslan (14-84-127)
Last Fight: 4/27/2013- UD10 Varol Vekiloglu (UNR)
Next Fight: 1/25/2014- vs. #3 Marco Huck
See Huck’s notes, above.

6) Thabiso Mchunu (14-20-58)
Last Fight: 8/3/2013- UD10 Eddie Chambers (UNR)
Next Fight: 1/24/2013- vs. #20 Garrett Wilson
Mchunu will be back on an NBC Sports card on January 24 against Garrett Wilson.
7) Grigory Drozd (4-11-58)
Last Fight: 10/5/2013- TKO11 #13 Mateusz Masternak
Next Fight: 3/15/2014- vs. Jeremy Ouanna (UNR)
Drozd will defend his European title in March against solid French journeyman Jeremy Ouanna, though Wlodarczyk’s team seems to think they might get Drozd in their next fight.
8) Ola Afolabi (4-249-249)
Last Fight: 11/2/2013- W* (MD12) vs. Lukasz Janik (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Afolabi needed a gift to squeak by Janik, and is on Wlodarczyk’s short list for the Pole’s next fight.
9) Giacobbe Fragomeni (4-14-266)
Last Fight: 12/6/2013- L (TKO6) vs. #4 Krzysztof Wlodarczyk
Next Fight: Unknown
I really hope that Fragomeni will call it a career.  
10) Silvio Branco (4-92)
Last Fight: 7/6/2013- W (TD10) vs. Juho Haapoja (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Branco has been tabbed by the WBC to fight Chakhkiev for some silly color coded title belt, with January 3 the deadline to avoid purse bids.
11) Ilunga Makabu (4-23)
Last Fight: 8/31/2013- TKO5 Eric Fields (UNR)
Next Fight: 2/1/2014- vs. Pawel Kolodziej (UNR)
Makabu is set to fight undefeated Polish prospect Pawel Kolodziej in Monaco for an interim alphabet belt on February 1.
12) Santander Silgado (2-7)
Last Fight: 11/1/2013- TKO2 #20 Steve Herelius
Next Fight: Unknown
Silgado may have caught a finished fighter at the right time in stopping Herelius, but in a fairly shallow division, that’s enough for now.
13) Mateusz Masternak (2-90)
Last Fight: 10/5/2013- L (TKO11) vs. #16 Grigory Drozd
Next Fight: Unknown
Masternak is still a legitimate prospect despite his first loss, but can no longer lay claim to the status of “top prospect” after losing to Drozd.
14) Lukasz Janik (2-7)
Last Fight: 11/2/2013- L* (MD12) vs. #7 Ola Afolabi
Next Fight: Unknown
Janik would like a well-deserved rematch with Afolabi.
15) Enad Licina (2-182)
Last Fight: 9/27/2013- TKO3 Levan Jomardashvili (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Licina needs a significant win before January, as his only relevant win in the last 5 years will become older than 5 years at that point, prompting his removal.
16) Danie Venter (2-14)
Last Fight: 9/21/2013- KO1 Shawn Cox (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
I must admit I wrote Venter off when he lost a bit of an upset to Mchunu last year, but Mchunu has proven to be something of a world beater since, and Venter’s overall resume is quietly starting to look pretty solid.
17) Dmytro Kucher (2-77)
Last Fight: 7/13/2013- L (MD12) vs. Ilunga Makabu (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Kucher would like a rematch with Makabu, and has his sights set on Wlodarczyk down the road, as well.  He expects to be back against someone in November or December.
18) Krzysztof Glowacki (2-21)
Last Fight: 12/14/2013- TKO9 Varol Vekiloglu (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Glowacki has been tearing through the middle tier of the division like a wrecking ball.
19) Rakhim Chakhkiev (2-4)
Last Fight: 10/5/2013- KO10 Giulian Ilie (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Chakhkiev will apparently get a chance at some silly color-coded alphabet belt against Silvio Branco, with a deadline to avoid purse bids of January 3.
20) Garrett Wilson (2-2)
Last Fight: 11/16/2013- L (UD10) vs. #18 HW Vyacheslav Glazkov (at HW)
Next Fight: 1/24/2014- vs. #6 Thabiso Mchunu
Wilson is not really a top-20 caliber performer, but I’m being forced to scrape the bottom of the barrel in a shallow division.

 

THE WEEK AHEAD:
Friday
Steve Herelius vs. Nuri Seferi; Hamburg, Germany; Eurosport
It’s a sad commentary on the division to think that Frenchman Herelius- a stoppage victim in his last 3 fights and winless since 2010- is arguably still a top 25 contender.  Seferi is a 37 year-old Albanian who has broken into the top 50 for the first time in his 15-year career after beating a decent journeyman or two.  If Herelius has anything left, this would be a good time to show it.

 

Saturday
Roy Jones, Jr. vs. Zine Benmakhlouf; Moscow, Russia; Sport 2 (Hungary)
The long-expired career of Jones continues to grow mold on the refrigerator shelf that is the cruiserweight division, getting a Moscow showcase against ordinary Algerian-French journeyman Zine Benmakhlouf.

Cruiserweight: 2013, Dec 9-15

Posted in Cruiserweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on February 5, 2014 by danboxing
On Friday in Chicago, #4 Krzysztof Wlodarczyk took bragging rights in his trilogy with the now 44 year-old #9 Giacobbe Fragomeni, arguably winning every round before the fight was stopped by the ring doctor between rounds 6 and 7 due to a cut, and knocking the Italian down in round 4 for good measure.

 

As much as I think Fragomeni is clearly not a top 10 fighter anymore, I can’t objectively justify dropping him.  He’s got the 2009 draw with Wlodarczyk that still counts more than Branco’s win over gatekeeper Haapoja, and the rest of Branco’s relevant resume cancels out with Fragomeni’s, since at cruiserweight it consists exclusively of inconclusive results in fights against Fragomeni.  Fragomeni’s losses (including this one) are at a high enough level to not really alter that.  Huck’s resume still overwhelms Wlodarczyk’s, so there is no change there.

 

Alexander Alekseev announced his retirement, as he will now transition into a position as a promoter.  Supposedly, he would have made the same decision even if he had won a title against Hernandez.  He is therefore removed, allowing everyone ranked #13 and below last week to move up, and opening a spot at #20 for Garrett Wilson.  This proves once and for all how shallow this division has become.  I searched high and low for a contender to take the spot.  I even considered installing William Souza Bezerra despite my position that his fights are most likely fake.  Wilson gets in largely based on a loss- that I scored a draw- against Alekseev, himself.  

 

Dan’s Top 20 (weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: None
1) Denis Lebedev (20-201-201)
Last Fight: 5/17/2013- L (TKO11) vs. Guillermo Jones (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
The rematch with Jones, according to Lebedev’s promoter, is all but done for mid-March in Moscow.
2) Yoan Pablo Hernandez (65-181-181)
Last Fight: 11/23/2013- TKO10 #12 Alexander Alekseev
Next Fight: Unknown
Hernandez still seems a little vulnerable, needing his power to bail him out a little against Alekseev.
3) Marco Huck (13-366-366)
Last Fight: 6/8/2013- W (MD12) vs. #5 Ola Afolabi
Next Fight: 1/25/2014- vs. #5 Firat Arslan
Huck-Arslan II has a new date of January 25 after Huck suffered a hand injury.
4) Krzysztof Wlodarczyk (13-442-442)
Last Fight: 12/6/2013- TKO6 #9 Giacobbe Fragomeni
Next Fight: Unknown
Wlodarczyk had a relatively easy time in his third fight with Fragomeni, and is interested in Huck, Hernandez, Afolabi, Drozd, and Chakhkiev for his next fight.
5) Firat Arslan (13-83-126)
Last Fight: 4/27/2013- UD10 Varol Vekiloglu (UNR)
Next Fight: 1/25/2014- vs. #3 Marco Huck
See Huck’s notes, above.

6) Thabiso Mchunu (13-19-57)
Last Fight: 8/3/2013- UD10 Eddie Chambers (UNR)
Next Fight: 1/24/2013- vs. #20 Garrett Wilson
Mchunu will be back on an NBC Sports card on January 24 against Garrett Wilson.
7) Grigory Drozd (3-10-57)
Last Fight: 10/5/2013- TKO11 #13 Mateusz Masternak
Next Fight: 3/15/2014- vs. Jeremy Ouanna (UNR)
Drozd will defend his European title in March against solid French journeyman Jeremy Ouanna, though Wlodarczyk’s team seems to think they might get Drozd in their next fight.
8) Ola Afolabi (3-248-248)
Last Fight: 11/2/2013- W* (MD12) vs. Lukasz Janik (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Afolabi needed a gift to squeak by Janik, and is on Wlodarczyk’s short list for the Pole’s next fight.
9) Giacobbe Fragomeni (3-13-265)
Last Fight: 12/6/2013- L (TKO6) vs. #4 Krzysztof Wlodarczyk
Next Fight: Unknown
I really hope that Fragomeni will call it a career.  
10) Silvio Branco (3-91)
Last Fight: 7/6/2013- W (TD10) vs. Juho Haapoja (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
I’ve heard unconfirmed reports that Russian prospect Chakhkiev wants a fight with Branco.
11) Ilunga Makabu (3-22)
Last Fight: 8/31/2013- TKO5 Eric Fields (UNR)
Next Fight: 2/1/2014- vs. Pawel Kolodziej (UNR)
Makabu is set to fight undefeated Polish prospect Pawel Kolodziej in Monaco for an interim alphabet belt on February 1.
12) Santander Silgado (1-6)
Last Fight: 11/1/2013- TKO2 #20 Steve Herelius
Next Fight: Unknown
Silgado may have caught a finished fighter at the right time in stopping Herelius, but in a fairly shallow division, that’s enough for now.
13) Mateusz Masternak (1-89)
Last Fight: 10/5/2013- L (TKO11) vs. #16 Grigory Drozd
Next Fight: Unknown
Masternak is still a legitimate prospect despite his first loss, but can no longer lay claim to the status of “top prospect” after losing to Drozd.
14) Lukasz Janik (1-6)
Last Fight: 11/2/2013- L* (MD12) vs. #7 Ola Afolabi
Next Fight: Unknown
Janik would like a well-deserved rematch with Afolabi.
15) Enad Licina (1-181)
Last Fight: 9/27/2013- TKO3 Levan Jomardashvili (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Licina needs a significant win before January, as his only relevant win in the last 5 years will become older than 5 years at that point, prompting his removal.
16) Danie Venter (1-13)
Last Fight: 9/21/2013- KO1 Shawn Cox (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
I must admit I wrote Venter off when he lost a bit of an upset to Mchunu last year, but Mchunu has proven to be something of a world beater since, and Venter’s overall resume is quietly starting to look pretty solid.
17) Dmytro Kucher (1-76)
Last Fight: 7/13/2013- L (MD12) vs. Ilunga Makabu (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Kucher would like a rematch with Makabu, and has his sights set on Wlodarczyk down the road, as well.  He expects to be back against someone in November or December.
18) Krzysztof Glowacki (1-20)
Last Fight: 10/19/2013- TKO3 Richard Hall (UNR)
Next Fight: 12/14/2013- vs. Varol Vekiloglu (UNR)
Glowacki is keeping very busy, and will fight on December 14 in Poland, less than 2 months after his previous fight.  He will be fighting Varol Vekiloglu, a late replacement.
19) Rakhim Chakhkiev (1-3)
Last Fight: 10/5/2013- KO10 Giulian Ilie (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
20) Garrett Wilson (1-1)
Last Fight: 11/16/2013- L (UD10) vs. #18 HW Vyacheslav Glazkov (at HW)
Next Fight: 1/24/2014- vs. #6 Thabiso Mchunu
Wilson is not really a top-20 caliber performer, but I’m being forced to scrape the bottom of the barrel in a shallow division.

 

THE WEEK AHEAD:
Friday
Alejandro Valori vs. Ruben Ponce; San Isidro, Argentina; Off-TV
Strictly a stay-busy fight, with gatekeeper Valori set to beat up on Ruben Ponce, a journeyman (to put it charitably) with a 2-8 record that Valori has already beaten twice.

 

Saturday
#19 Krzysztof Glowacki vs. Varol Vekiloglu; Walcz, Poland; Polsat Sport (Poland)
Glowacki is an undefeated prospect with crushing power.  Vekiloglu, a German Turk, is nothing special, really, but did gain a bit of respect in his last fight by unexpectedly going this distance with Firat Arslan.  This is really a pretty straightforward test of Glowacki’s vaunted reputation as a finisher, although Vekiloglu is not an unbreakable rock historically, having been stopped by the likes of Konstantin Airich and Nenad Borovcanin prior to the Arslan effort.

Cruiserweight: 2013: Aug 19-25

Posted in Cruiserweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on August 19, 2013 by danboxing
Undefeated prospect Yunier Dorticos was supposed to fight on the Geale-Barker undercard, but the fight didn’t come off.  No changes.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: None
1) Denis Lebedev (4-185-185)
Last Fight: 5/17/2013- L (TKO11) vs. Guillermo Jones (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Lebedev was winning the fight on points against Jones when his eye ballooned and he faded to a stoppage.  Who’s to say that he wouldn’t have won if Jones had been weakened by making weight the right way (or by not using whatever PEDs he may have been masking with the substance)?  Lebedev is accorded the benefit of the doubt, and will be treated like the fight never happened.
2) Yoan Pablo Hernandez (49-165-165)
Last Fight: 9/15/2012- W*(UD12) vs. #20 Troy Ross
Next Fight: Unknown
Finally some Hernandez news: his hand has been slow to heal, but he’s ready to train again.  He’s looking at a likely October fight with Alekseev.
3) Troy Ross (49-49-81)
Last Fight: 9/15/2012- L*(UD12) vs. #1 Yoan Pablo Hernandez
Next Fight: Unknown
Quote from Ross’s Twitter: “If the right opportunity arises I will fight again.”  That sounds more like a semi-retired fighter than the guy that just outfought the division’s #1 contender.  Here’s hoping he starts hunting for good fights like a starving mountain man any second now.
4) Marco Huck (4-350-350)
Last Fight: 6/8/2013- W (MD12) vs. #5 Ola Afolabi
Next Fight: 9/14/2013- vs. #6 Firat Arslan
Huck will make a mandatory defense in a rematch against Firat Arslan on September 14.
5) Krzysztof Wlodarczyk (4-426-426)
Last Fight: 6/21/2013- TKO8 Rakhim Chakhkiev (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Wlodarczyk indicated interest in moving up to fight Adamek, but Adamek isn’t for it, and Albert Sosnowski has been discussed instead.  Meanwhile, his mandatory is Giacobbe Fragomeni, who would have little chance after struggling to practical stalemates with 46-47 year old Silvio Branco.
6) Firat Arslan (4-67-110)
Last Fight: 4/27/2013- UD10 Varol Vekiloglu (UNR)
Next Fight: 9/14/2013- vs. #4 Marco Huck
See Huck’s notes, above.

7) Thabiso Mchunu (3-3-41)
Last Fight: 8/3/2013- UD10 Eddie Chambers (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Mchunu intends to be back by the end of the year, and stays he’ll take on anyone in the division.  I don’t blame him.  I’d pick him to beat anyone.
8) Ola Afolabi (3-232-232)
Last Fight: 6/8/2013- L (MD12) vs. #8 Marco Huck
Next Fight: Unknown
Afolabi is rumored for the next Monaco Million Dollar Super 4 tournament, along with BJ Flores, Ilunga Makabu, and Australian prospect Brad Pitt.
9) Danny Green (3-41-194)
Last Fight: 11/21/2012- UD12 Shane Cameron (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Green is leaning toward retirement at last check.
10) B.J. Flores (3-12-165)
Last Fight: 10/6/2012- TKO2 David McNemar (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Flores has been released from his contract with Don King, and is now rumored for an upcoming Million Dollar tournament in Monaco, with the other participants rumored to be Ilunga Makabu, Brad Pitt, and Ola Afolabi.
11) Giacobbe Fragomeni (3-249)
Last Fight: 7/27/2013- UD8 Toni Visic (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Fragomeni snuck in a strictly stay-busy fight with Toni Visic on about 1 day’s notice as far as I can tell.
12) Silvio Branco (3-75)
Last Fight: 7/6/2013- W (TD10) vs. Juho Haapoja (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Branco continues to chug along at 47 years young.  He’s like a lower-level Hopkins.
13) Alexander Alekseev (3-136)
Last Fight: 2/22/2013- UD12* Garrett Wilson (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Alekseev is very likely for a shot at Yoan Pablo Hernandez in October.
14) Mateusz Masternak (3-73)
Last Fight: 4/13/2013- TKO9 Sean Corbin (UNR)
Next Fight: 10/5/2013- vs. #18 Grigory Drozd
The Masternak-Drozd fight on October 5 no longer appears on Boxrec’s schedule.  That’s usually an ominous sign.  Still, I have seen no report of it falling through, so I’ll continue to list it until I actually hear otherwise.
15) Francisco Palacios (3-125)
Last Fight: 9/22/2012- L(U12) vs. #7 Krzysztof Wlodarczyk
Next Fight: Unknown
Palacios very likely will not fight until after his contract with Don King expires in September.
16) Ilunga Makabu (3-6)
Last Fight: 7/13/2013- W (MD12) vs. #17 Dmytro Kucher
Next Fight: 8/31/2013- vs. Eric Fields (UNR)
Makabu takes on borderline top-30 Oklahoma one-loss prospect Eric Fields in South Africa on August 31.  He’s also rumored for a Monaco 4-man tournament in the fall along with Flores, Afolabi, and Australian Brad Pitt.
17) Enad Licina (4-165)
Last Fight: 7/27/2013- UD6 Marko Rupcic (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Licina has been fighting nobodies slightly over the heavyweight limit since November.  He’ll be removed in November for inactivity at cruiserweight if he doesn’t schedule something at 200 by then, or in January if he does that but doesn’t get a significant win, since his last one will be 5 years old then.
18) Grigory Drozd (4-41)
Last Fight: 12/17/2012- UD12 Jean-Marc Monrose (UNR)
Next Fight: 10/5/2013- vs. #14 Mateusz Masternak
See Masternak’s notes, above.
19) Dmytro Kucher (4-60)
Last Fight: 7/13/2013- L (MD12) vs. Ilunga Makabu (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Kucher is practically back to square one after falling short against Makabu.
20) Krzysztof Glowacki (4-4)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- UD8 Taylor Mabika (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown

 

THE WEEK AHEAD: Two fights to mention this week:

 

Friday in Galati, Romania, gatekeepers Nuri Seferi of Albania/Macedonia/Switzerland and Garrett Wilson of the US face off in a fairly intriguing battle.

 

The same night in Villa Hidalgo, Argentina, gatekeeper Alejandro Valori gets a relatively soft touch against journeyman Jose Maria Rodriguez.

Cruiserweight: 2013: May 27- Jun 2

Posted in Cruiserweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on May 29, 2013 by danboxing
Argentine prospect Marcos Ahumada- who would be undefeated but for a ridiculous ruling of a TKO against him when he was cut with an obvious headbutt while leading in the 4th round of his last fight- set the record straight on Friday, knocking out top gatekeeper Alejandro Valori in, poetically, the 4th round.  But don’t expect too much from Ahumada in terms of his ranking at this time.  In both encounters, Valori- who has fought as high as 261 pounds in his career- met Ahumada- typically a light heavyweight- at a catchweight in the high 170s.  I don’t know enough about Valori’s physique to say for sure that he was badly drained at that weight, but it is still a good 20 pounds south of the weight at which he had his greatest success.  It can certainly be said that he met Ahumada way over half way.  This is similar to the situation of Pawel Glazewski, a light heavyweight for all intents and purposes, who was nevertheless ranked here for beating Roy Jones in the low 180s.  He has since been bumped out of the rankings, and Ahumada falls short as well.

 

Now for another weird situation.  Fringe contending undefeated prospect William Fernando Souza Bezerra had a fight scheduled against journeyman Jose Robson Dos Santos.  This fight’s result still does not show up on boxrec, and after googling the heck out of it, I still can’t find any indication that it took place.  Boxrec really needs to get an editor for Brazil, and Brazil needs to get some sort of online boxing media.  This is getting out of hand.  There have been rumors swirling on the internet that Bezerra might not be a real fighter.  That is due to the lack of media coverage or even pictures of him in the ring.  I can tell you that I was finally able to locate a youtube video of him fighting, so I can verify that he has indeed been inside a prize ring.  That being said, even that fight appeared sketchy to me.  He scored a knockdown that ended the fight around 10 seconds after the round should have ended, and it seemed to me that the opponent went down from a body shot that barely landed, if at all.  The ref didn’t even look like a real ref, as he counted VERY slowly and didn’t even start the count until about 2 seconds after the guy got up.  Anyway, unless Bezerra is upset, his fight won’t affect the rankings anyway, so I’ll let it go.  I know I have an occasional Brazilian and at least one Bezerra fan reading my blog, so if anyone can hook me up with Bezerra’s results in the future within a couple days of the fight, that would be great.

 

No changes.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: None
1) Guillermo Jones (2-2-2)
Last Fight: 5/17/2013- TKO11 #1 Denis Lebedev
Next Fight: Unknown
Jones wants to fight Wladimir Klitschko (he said the same a couple years ago), but the better bet at the moment appears to be Eddie Chambers at 200.
2) Yoan Pablo Hernandez (37-153-153)
Last Fight: 9/15/2012- W*(UD12) vs. #20 Troy Ross
Next Fight: Unknown
Hernandez pulled out of his scheduled 2/2 fight with Eric Fields with a fractured hand.
3) Troy Ross (37-37-69)
Last Fight: 9/15/2012- L*(UD12) vs. #1 Yoan Pablo Hernandez
Next Fight: Unknown
Quote from Ross’s Twitter: “If the right opportunity arises I will fight again.”  That sounds more like a semi-retired fighter than the guy that just outfought the division’s #1 contender.  Here’s hoping he starts hunting for good fights like a starving mountain man any second now.
4) Denis Lebedev (2-173-173)
Last Fight: 5/17/2013- L (TKO11) vs. Guillermo Jones (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Lebedev says he suffered no long-term damage to his eye, which is lucky.
5) Ola Afolabi (2-220-220)
Last Fight: 5/5/2012- Draw* (MD12) vs. #4 Marco Huck
Next Fight: 6/8/2013- vs. #8 Marco Huck
Sauerland is now promoting the Huck-Afolabi trilogy match after Don King botched it, and has limited the damage to about a month’s delay, with the fight now set for June 8 in Berlin.
6) Krzysztof Wlodarczyk (2-414-414)
Last Fight: 9/22/2012- UD12 #13 Francisco Palacios
Next Fight: 6/21/2013- vs. Rakhim Chakhkiev (UNR)
Apparently an agreement has been reached for Wlodarczyk to fight undefeated and fringe-contending Russian Olympian Rakhim Chakhkiev in Moscow, June 21.  Wlodarczyk will reportedly have a rematch clause in the event he loses.
7) Firat Arslan (2-55-98)
Last Fight: 4/27/2013- UD10 Varol Vekiloglu (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Arslan easily handled his first opponent under the Sauerland banner, but disappointed a bit in that he failed to stop him.
8) Marco Huck (2-338-338)
Last Fight: 11/3/2012- W*(UD12) vs. #10 Firat Arslan (Robbery)
Next Fight: 6/8/2013- vs. #5 Ola Afolabi
See Afolabi’s notes, above.
9) Lateef Kayode (2-52-132)
Last Fight: 6/2/2012- Draw (SD12) vs. ‘Roided up #3 Antonio Tarver
Next Fight: Unknown
There are indications that Kayode may be fighting Eddie Chambers next, though it’s unclear whether it is being discussed for cruiser or heavy.
10) Danny Green (2-29-182)
Last Fight: 11/21/2012- UD12 Shane Cameron (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Green has been helping an Australian UFC fighter prepare for an upcoming fight, but still no word on whether he plans to fight again.
11) B.J. Flores (2-153)
Last Fight: 10/6/2012- TKO2 David McNemar (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Flores appeared to have a fight lined up with Nuri Seferi on June 8 after the better match-up with Palacios fell through, but he hasn’t mentioned it on Twitter in weeks, doesn’t respond to my inquiries about it, and it never showed up on Boxrec.  I’m assuming it’s off at this point.
12) Giacobbe Fragomeni (2-237)
Last Fight: 12/15/2012- W*(SD12) vs. #13 Silvio Branco
Next Fight: Unknown
There is some speculation that Masternak might try to lure Fragomeni out of his mandatory shot at Wlodarczyk with a higher monetary offer that might put Masternak in the same position with a victory.
13) Silvio Branco (2-63)
Last Fight: 12/15/2012- L*(SD12) vs. #12 Giacobbe Fragomeni
Next Fight: Unknown
Branco can still hang with whippersnappers like 43 year-old countryman Fragomeni, but you’ve gotta think his active days are numbered at 46.
14) Alexander Alekseev (2-124)
Last Fight: 2/22/2013- UD12* Garrett Wilson (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Alekseev barely squeaked by after building an early lead against Wilson, but it’s still an improvement from his previous fight.
15) Mateusz Masternak (2-61)
Last Fight: 4/13/2013- TKO9 Sean Corbin (UNR)
Next Fight: 8/24/2013- vs. Unknown Opponent
Masternak returns on August 24, but no other details are available.
16) Francisco Palacios (2-113)
Last Fight: 9/22/2012- L(UD12) vs. #7 Krzysztof Wlodarczyk
Next Fight: Unknown
Palacios has been trying to convince Antonio Tarver to fight him.
17) Thabiso Mchunu (2-29)
Last Fight: 11/10/2012- TKO5 #20 Danie Venter
Next Fight: Unknown
Mchunu and Eddie Chambers are currently involved in a rather entertaining Twitter war, though Guillermo Jones appears the more likely opponent for Chambers at this moment.
18) Dmytro Kucher (2-48)
Last Fight: 3/21/2013- UD12 Julio Cesar Dos Santos (UNR)
Next Fight: 7/13/2013- vs. Ilunga Makabu (UNR)
A clash of good-looking prospects is on tap for July 13, as Kucher will meet Junior Makabu in Monaco.
19) Enad Licina (2-153)
Last Fight: 11/10/2012- TKO2 Koeksal Orduhan
Next Fight: 6/15/2013- vs. Unknown Opponent
Licina announced a June 15 fight on Twitter, but no opponent yet.
20) Grigory Drozd (2-29)
Last Fight: 12/17/2012- UD12 Jean-Marc Monrose (UNR)
Next Fight: 6/8/2013- vs. Unknown Opponent
Drozd will apparently be fighting in an unpronounceable Russian town in early June, but no opponent has been named yet.  That’s assuming his recovery from hand surgery goes according to plan.  But an ominous sign has popped up, as it no longer appears on boxrec.

 

THE WEEK AHEAD: Friday in Georgetown, Guyana, Barbados gatekeeper Shawn Cox takes on local journeyman Kurt Bess in a seemingly pointless rematch of their 2011 fight, in which Cox knocked Bess down 3 times en route to a first round stoppage win.  What’s worse- Bess hasn’t fought since.

 

The following night in Mississauga, Ontario, undefeated and fast-rising local prospect Denton Daley battles high-level French journeyman Faisal Arrami in what should be the toughest fight of Daley’s career, which is only 9 fights deep.

Light Heavyweight: 2013, May 20-26

Posted in Light Heavyweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on May 22, 2013 by danboxing
An upset alert from Pont-Audemer, France, as local gatekeeper Jonathan Profichet was upended on Friday in his quest for the vacant French title by one-loss fringe prospect Patrick Bois.  It was apparently close and a split decision, but unfortunately I can’t find any video to confirm or refute the result.  Therefore, it will have to stand as a razor thin win for Bois unless and until I can eventually watch the contest.

 

The following night in Marseilles, fringe contender Nadjib Mohammedi had little problem with an overmatched Georgian opponent, Shalva Jomardashvili, knocking out the journeyman- who outweighed Mohammedi by 10 pounds- in the 3rd round.

 

No changes.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: Andre Ward (37-37-37)
Last Fight: 9/8/2012- TKO10 Champ Chad Dawson (at SMW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Ward is looking to return in August, and is reportedly thinking about fighting one of the winners of Kessler-Froch and Pascal-Bute, at least at some point.
1) Chad Dawson (37-364-364)
Last Fight: 9/8/2012- L(TKO10) vs. SMW Champ Andre Ward (at SMW)
Next Fight: 6/8/2013- vs. SMW #6 Adonis Stevenson
Dawson will fight Adonis Stevenson (who moves up from 168) on June 8 in Montreal.
2) Bernard Hopkins (37-363-363)
Last Fight: 3/9/2012- UD12 #6 Tavoris Cloud
Next Fight: 7/13/2013- vs. Karo Murat (UNR)
All the buzz had been revolving around a Hopkins-Cleverly showdown, but with little or no warning, he signed to fight his mandatory, the slightly more proven but inactive Karo Murat, instead.
3) Sergey Kovalev (2-18-18)
Last Fight: 1/19/2013- TKO3 #4 Gabriel Campillo
Next Fight: 6/14/2013- vs. #8 Cornelius White
Kovalev is back in action against another pretty tough opponent on June 14.
4) Gabriel Campillo (2-152-152)
Last Fight: 1/19/2013- L(TKO3) vs. Sergey Kovalev (UNR)
Next Fight: 8/16/2013- vs. #13 Andrzej Fonfara
Campillo will fight Fonfara in an interesting crossroads fight at Comiskey Park in Chicago.
5) Tavoris Cloud (2-195-195)
Last Fight: 3/9/2013- L (UD12) vs. #2 Bernard Hopkins
Next Fight: Unknown
Cloud’s manager expects him back in action by the end of the year.  Normally that wouldn’t be saying much, but that would be against type for Cloud.
6) Nathan Cleverly (2-172-172)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- UD12 Robin Krasniqi (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Cleverly has offered a fight to the Froch-Kessler winner.
7) Isaac Chilemba (2-8-68)
Last Fight: 3/30/2013- Draw* (SD12) vs. #9 Tony Bellew (should be win)
Next Fight: 5/25/2013- vs. #9 Tony Bellew
That didn’t take long!  Chilemba will rematch Bellew on the Froch-Kessler undercard in London, less than two months removed from getting borderline robbed the first time around.
8) Cornelius White (2-45-75)
Last Fight: 3/9/2013- UD8 Otis Griffin (UNR)
Next Fight: 6/14/2013- vs. #3 Sergey Kovalev
Moment of truth time for White.  On June 14 we’ll find out if he’s more the guy that beat up Dmitri Sukhotski, or the guy that got sparked out in just seconds by Don George.  If he’s the latter, Kovalev should prove it pretty quickly.
9) Tony Bellew (2-84-84)
Last Fight: 3/30/2013- Draw* (SD12) vs. #13 Isaac Chilemba (should be loss)
Next Fight: 5/25/2013- vs. #7 Isaac Chilemba
See Chilemba’s notes, above.
10) Cedric Agnew (2-2-6)
Last Fight: 4/12/2013- UD12 #14 Yusaf Mack
Next Fight: Unknown
Agnew may have caught a fading Yusaf Mack at the right time, but he’s clearly a climber, having now beaten both Mack and Otis Griffin.
11) Jürgen Brähmer (2-57)
Last Fight: 4/27/2013- TKO2 Tony Averlant (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Braehmer made an easy first defense of his European belt against Averlant.  He is currently the mandatory for Cleverly’s alphabet strap, as well, though it sounds like the Welshman would prefer bigger fish- or at least fish with bigger belts.
12) Beibut Shumenov (2-152)
Last Fight: 6/2/2012- UD12 Enrique Ornelas (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
At one point, it appeared that Shumenov might step in to fight Pascal when Bute withdrew, but that appears to have gone nowhere, as the card was canceled.
13) Andrzej Fonfara (2-45)
Last Fight: 11/16/2012- TKO7 Tommy Karpency (UNR)
Next Fight: 8/16/2013- vs. #4 Gabriel Campillo
Fonfara will get a huge opportunity to launch himself into the top 5 when he takes on Gabriel Campillo in Chicago.
14) Lucian Bute (2-29)
Last Fight: 11/3/2012- UD12 #16 Denis Grachev
Next Fight: 12/7/2013- vs. Jean Pascal (UNR)
Bute-Pascal has been rescheduled tentatively for December 7 after Bute suffered a hand injury.  They’ve also reserved January 25 as a back-up plan.  Either way, it will be in Montreal.
15) Denis Grachev (2-56)
Last Fight: 3/30/2013– W* (SD10) vs. Zsolt Erdei (UNR) (should be draw)
Next Fight: 7/13/2013- vs. SMW #14 Edwin Rodriguez
Grachev will be fighting Edwin Rodriguez at a catchweight of 171.5 in Monte Carlo for a million dollar prize.
16) Dmitri Sukhotski (2-134)
Last Fight: 12/8/2012- TKO1 Vladimir Borovsky (UNR)
Next Fight: 6/4/2013- vs. Mikhail Krinitsin (UNR)
Sukhotski will fight in Barnaul, Russia on June 4 against low-level Kazakh journeyman Mikhail Krinitsin.
17) Eleider Alvarez (2-17)
Last Fight: 3/22/2013- TKO3 Nicholson Poulard (UNR)
Next Fight: 6/8/2013- vs. Allan Green (UNR)
Alvarez will now be fighting Green on the Dawson-Stevenson undercard.
18) Yunieski Gonzalez (2-10)
Last Fight: 3/15/2013- KO8 Rowland Bryant (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Gonzalez took a huge step up in competition and made good, knocking out strong fringe contender Bryant. 
19) Doudou Ngumbu (2-7)
Last Fight: 3/16/2013- UD12 #14 Vyacheslav Uzelkoff
Next Fight: Unknown
20) Glen Johnson (2-2)
Last Fight: 4/19/2013- TKO2 Junior Ramos (UNR) (at CW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Strangely, even though Johnson looks completely spent, he is once again ranked (barely) at both 175 and 168.

 

The Week Ahead: Two fights with real potential to impact the division on Saturday.

 

On the London undercard for Froch-Kessler II, we get another important rematch, as #9 Tony Bellew looks for redemption after he got a very generous draw against underdog (but now #7) Isaac Chilemba just a couple months ago.

 

In Buenos Aires, we find still another rematch, as cruiserweight fringe contender Alejandro Valori once again faces prospect Marcos Ahumada.  Their first fight a couple months ago ended controversially, when Valori went down twice in the first round, but was credited with a 4th-round TKO after Ahumada was deemed unable to continue with a cut that clearly appeared to have been caused by a headbutt.  This fight could be at 175, 200, or anywhere in between.

Cruiserweight: 2013: May 20-26

Posted in Cruiserweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on May 21, 2013 by danboxing
A huge fight yielded a huge upset in Moscow on Friday.  #1 Denis Lebedev fought his toughest opponent since being robbed against Marco Huck, meeting inactive 41 year-old former titlist Guillermo Jones.  Jones- despite having once been a welterweight- appeared to be the significantly bigger man in the ring.  Nevertheless, Lebedev was scoring with the cleaner and apparently heavier punches in most of the rounds.  He mixed in a wide assortment of hooks, uppercuts, and left hands, but Jones showed a great chin and seemed unaffected by what looked like very hard shots from a noted puncher.

 

But while Lebedev appeared to be piling up the rounds, Jones was creating a pile of swelling around Lebedev’s right eye.  It was the most grotesque swelling I’ve seen in recent years.  Picture Pawel Wolak against Delvin Rodriguez, and then double it.  By roughly the 4th round or so, there was absolutely no way the Russian could see anything from that side.  Still, he was game, and did more than his share of scoring.  But he was slowly being broken down physically and perhaps mentally.  Down 5 points on my card (but 2 points closer on 2 of the 3 official cards), Jones really began to take over in the 10th, with a flagging Lebedev even resorting to a tackle in an attempt to rest.  The 11th round featured a very tired Jones and an exhausted Lebedev practically stumbling around the ring and tossing potshots out whenever possible.  With about a minute left, Lebedev half walked and half stumbled to the ropes when Jones landed what appeared to be a pretty ordinary jab to the forehead.  About half a second later, Lebedev took a knee and then fell as Jones threw another punch or two late.  The end was a bit odd to me.  Referee Stanley Christodoulou appeared to reach the count of 8 at the time Lebedev stood up, and then waved the fight off without checking to see if Lebedev was willing or able to continue.  The fight has been recorded as a knockout, though, indicating that Christodoulou had reached 10.  If he did so, the last two counts were given within about a quarter of a second, and both after Lebedev was up.  I’m not saying Lebedev should have been allowed to continue- in  fact he turned away from the ref and started walking away after standing- but the procedure struck me as very questionable.

 

Speaking of questionable procedure: we’ve got to talk a bit about Lebedev’s eye and the way it was handled.  First, I need to criticize his corner.  Much like Aaron Snowell and company in Tyson-Douglas in 1990, they lacked an endswell, meaning that they would be automatically fighting a losing battle against any active swelling- slowing its progress at best.  They were slightly more prepared than Tyson’s team in that they at least had ice in a bag, where Snowell had only a latex glove filled with cold water.

 

The ringside doctor was called upon only once as far as I can tell- a matter of seconds before the stoppage.  He took only a quick look and let Lebedev continue.  I decline to pass judgment on him for a couple reasons.  First, he went to school for a lot of years in order to know more than I do about the severity of the injury.  Second, I think it’s very possible that the Russian authorities have tougher standards for stopping a fight, similar to the old-school blood and guts battles you might see in the 1950s.  So while I personally think there’s a really good chance that Lebedev has all kinds of smashed bones around his eye and might never see well out of it again, I really am not qualified to know that.  And if Russia has chosen to allow guys more latitude in putting their own health and safety at risk in the ring than I’m used to, I guess that’s between him, the commission, and his corner.

 

As to the referee Stanley Christodoulou, in addition to the issues I noted earlier, I would have to say that he was clearly derelict.  Lebedev’s eye was buried under about 2-3 inches of swollen flesh, as was his temple.  It looked like he was wearing giant flesh-colored goggles on that side.  The idea that Christodoulou would not even stop the action to consult a doctor until this had been the case for about 7 rounds is unfathomable to me.  Now it’s possible that the doctor had monitored Lebedev in his corner between rounds, but still…

 

There was also a relatively uninspiring installment of the Prizefighter series, as a collection of domestic cruiserweights clashed for a series of 3-rounders in London.  Tony Conquest- one of the favorites- withdrew late, and as a result the field was even weaker than I expected.  I thought that by the second round, there would at least be one top 50 fighter in the field, but with Conquest’s withdrawal and some of the other quality fighters losing close decisions and/or having a weak tournament draw, even the winner- underdog Wadi Camacho- is not ranked in the top 50 by Boxrec at the moment.

 

Guillermo Jones, though he still certainly qualifies as a heavily inactive fighter overall, looks like the best fighter in the division and has proven more than anyone else at the moment.  Yoan Pablo Hernandez is the only other realistic candidate for the #1 spot, and Hernandez frankly deserved to lose to a 20th-ranked Troy Ross in his last fight, and has never beaten a #1 fighter (or cleanly beaten even a #2) as Jones just did.  Therefore, Jones returns to the rankings at no less than the #1 spot.  Lebedev falls to #4.  He has a larger volume of significant wins than does Ola Afolabi, and deserved the win in his fight against a higher-ranked version of Huck, while Afolabi owns a close loss and a fairly-decided draw against him.  Granted, Afolabi has never lost to anyone with as low a ranking as Jones had even before he was removed for inactivity, but Jones’ inactivity was the only reason he was ranked that low, as he had not lost within a relevant period of time, and had beaten a top 5 fighter in Firat Arslan.  Everyone ranked #4-20 last week backtracks one place.  This includes B.J. Flores, who exits the top 10, and Pawel Glazewski, who exits the rankings, each after 14 consecutive weeks.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: None
1) Guillermo Jones (1-1-1)
Last Fight: 5/17/2013- TKO11 #1 Denis Lebedev
Next Fight: Unknown
Jones resurrected his career in a big way by beating the best active fighter in the division, in a come-from-behind and headline-grabbing fashion, to boot.
2) Yoan Pablo Hernandez (36-152-152)
Last Fight: 9/15/2012- W*(UD12) vs. #20 Troy Ross
Next Fight: Unknown
Hernandez pulled out of his scheduled 2/2 fight with Eric Fields with a fractured hand.
3) Troy Ross (36-36-68)
Last Fight: 9/15/2012- L*(UD12) vs. #1 Yoan Pablo Hernandez
Next Fight: Unknown
Quote from Ross’s Twitter: “If the right opportunity arises I will fight again.”  That sounds more like a semi-retired fighter than the guy that just outfought the division’s #1 contender.  Here’s hoping he starts hunting for good fights like a starving mountain man any second now.
4) Denis Lebedev (1-172-172)
Last Fight: 5/17/2013- L (TKO11) vs. Guillermo Jones (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Lebedev no doubt faces a long layoff after his face and will were both broken in a grueling war with Guillermo Jones.

5) Ola Afolabi (1-219-219)

Last Fight: 5/5/2012- Draw* (MD12) vs. #4 Marco Huck
Next Fight: 6/8/2013- vs. #8 Marco Huck
Sauerland is now promoting the Huck-Afolabi trilogy match after Don King botched it, and has limited the damage to about a month’s delay, with the fight now set for June 8 in Berlin.
6) Krzysztof Wlodarczyk (1-413-413)
Last Fight: 9/22/2012- UD12 #13 Francisco Palacios
Next Fight: 6/21/2013- vs. Rakhim Chakhkiev (UNR)
Apparently an agreement has been reached for Wlodarczyk to fight undefeated and fringe-contending Russian Olympian Rakhim Chakhkiev in Moscow, June 21.  Wlodarczyk will reportedly have a rematch clause in the event he loses.
7) Firat Arslan (1-54-97)
Last Fight: 4/27/2013- UD10 Varol Vekiloglu (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Arslan easily handled his first opponent under the Sauerland banner, but disappointed a bit in that he failed to stop him.
8) Marco Huck (1-337-337)
Last Fight: 11/3/2012- W*(UD12) vs. #10 Firat Arslan (Robbery)
Next Fight: 6/8/2013- vs. #5 Ola Afolabi
See Afolabi’s notes, above.
9) Lateef Kayode (1-51-131)
Last Fight: 6/2/2012- Draw (SD12) vs. ‘Roided up #3 Antonio Tarver
Next Fight: Unknown
There are indications that Kayode may be fighting Eddie Chambers next, though it’s unclear whether it is being discussed for cruiser or heavy.
10) Danny Green (1-28-181)
Last Fight: 11/21/2012- UD12 Shane Cameron (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Green has been helping an Australian UFC fighter prepare for an upcoming fight, but still no word on whether he plans to fight again.
11) B.J. Flores (1-152)
Last Fight: 10/6/2012- TKO2 David McNemar (UNR)
Next Fight: 6/8/2013- vs. Nuri Seferi (UNR)
Don King’s embarrassing failure to make the Huck-Afolabi card happen has claimed Flores-Palacios as collateral damage.  Flores instead will be fighting a month later against Albanian gatekeeper Nuri Seferi, in Albania.  Or at least he might be.  The fight has never showed up on Boxrec, and Flores didn’t respond when I asked him about it on Twitter.
12) Giacobbe Fragomeni (1-236)
Last Fight: 12/15/2012- W*(SD12) vs. #13 Silvio Branco
Next Fight: Unknown
There is some speculation that Masternak might try to lure Fragomeni out of his mandatory shot at Wlodarczyk with a higher monetary offer that might put Masternak in the same position with a victory.
13) Silvio Branco (1-62)
Last Fight: 12/15/2012- L*(SD12) vs. #12 Giacobbe Fragomeni
Next Fight: Unknown
Branco can still hang with whippersnappers like 43 year-old countryman Fragomeni, but you’ve gotta think his active days are numbered at 46.
14) Alexander Alekseev (1-123)
Last Fight: 2/22/2013- UD12* Garrett Wilson (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Alekseev barely squeaked by after building an early lead against Wilson, but it’s still an improvement from his previous fight.
15) Mateusz Masternak (1-60)
Last Fight: 4/13/2013- TKO9 Sean Corbin (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Masternak’s scheduled meeting with Jeremy Ouanna gave way to an even less impressive match-up against Sean Corbin, a mediocre Guyana journeyman best known for beating a totally shot Wayne Braithwaite after being inactive for 2 years.
16) Francisco Palacios (1-112)
Last Fight: 9/22/2012- L(UD12) vs. #7 Krzysztof Wlodarczyk
Next Fight: Unknown
Palacios has been trying to convince Antonio Tarver to fight him.
17) Thabiso Mchunu (1-28)
Last Fight: 11/10/2012- TKO5 #20 Danie Venter
Next Fight: Unknown
Mchunu recently called out Eddie Chambers on Twitter.
18) Dmytro Kucher (1-47)
Last Fight: 3/21/2013- UD12 Julio Cesar Dos Santos (UNR)
Next Fight: 7/13/2013- vs. Ilunga Makabu (UNR)
A clash of good-looking prospects is on tap for July 13, as Kucher will meet Junior Makabu in Monaco.
19) Enad Licina (1-152)
Last Fight: 11/10/2012- TKO2 Koeksal Orduhan
Next Fight: 6/15/2013- vs. Unknown Opponent
Licina announced a June 15 fight on Twitter, but no opponent yet.
20) Grigory Drozd (1-28)
Last Fight: 12/17/2012- UD12 Jean-Marc Monrose (UNR)
Next Fight: 6/8/2013- vs. Unknown Opponent
Drozd will apparently be fighting in an unpronounceable Russian town in early June, but no opponent has been named yet.  That’s assuming his recovery from hand surgery goes according to plan.  But an ominous sign has popped up, as it no longer appears on boxrec.

 

THE WEEK AHEAD: Two fights to mention on Saturday.  In Buenos Aires, Argentine fringe contender Alejandro Valori rematches essentially undefeated prospect and countryman Marcos Ahumada.  In their first fight in March, Valori was awkwardly and incorrectly declared the TKO winner when Ahumada was deemed unable to continue after being cut by a head clash in the 4th round.  By any reasonable measure, it should have been a no contest since 4 rounds had not been completed.  Even in the few jurisdictions that require a decision after the start of the 4th round, it would have been Ahumada coming up with the win, since he knocked Valori down twice in the first round.  The first fight was contested less than two pounds over the light heavyweight limit, and so this fight could, so far as I know, end up being contested at 175, 200, or anywhere in between.

 

The same night in Brazil, undefeated knockout artist William Fernando Souza Bezerra stays busy in Pocas de Caldas against fellow Sao Paolo native and mid-range journeyman Jose Robson Dos Santos.

Cruiserweight: 2013: Mar 18-24

Posted in Cruiserweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on March 20, 2013 by danboxing
A bit of a bizarre ending capped off what was shaping up as a a very interesting fight in Concordia, Argentina on Saturday. 

 

First, let me describe the fighters, both Argentinians.  Alejandro Valori is a 3-loss, powerfully built fringe contender who rose from relative obscurity to the top of the South American scene with a TKO win over former alphabet challenger Rogelio Rossi in July.  He normally fights as a full cruiserweight, but cut a great deal of weight to meet the typically lighter Ahumada at a 176.25 catchweight this time around.

 

Ahumada is an undefeated southpaw prospect, yet to be tested, who is extremely tall and wiry.  Basically all arms and legs.  He fights in one of the craziest styles you’ll ever see.  He literally winds up his punches behind him before flinging them out the recklessly and with all his might.  He has no pretense of defense, but looks to take his opponent’s head off if he can.

 

Now to the fight itself.  The first minute or so was very much a feeling out process.  But then Ahumada caught Valori standing in front a bit near the ropes, and delivered a long and flush overhand left that sent the normally larger Valori knocked heavily to his back.  After Valori rose to his feet, Ahumada continued his brazen attack, throwing haymakers from various angles that moved Valori even when they failed to land.  Finally, Ahumada caught Valori falling in with a winding uppercut that put the more experienced man down for a second time.  In the Argentine scoring system, the resulting 10-7 deficit is even more significant, since about half the rounds scored between well-matched fighters are scored 10-9.5.  Valori, then, could have needed to win as many as 6 rounds just to draw even.

 

Valori did win the second round, I thought, in that fashion, and won the third on my card by a 10-9 margin.  Then came the 4th.  The two fighters’ heads came together near the corner, sending Ahumada for an appointment with the ringside physician.  What happened next is not entirely clear to me.  The fight was declared a TKO victory for Valori.  This was reminiscent of the first Dawson-Hopkins fight, where Pat Russell ruled Dawson the TKO winnner after Hopkins sustained an apparent shoulder injury in a fall precipitated by a Dawson shove.  I can scarcely understand Spanish, and thus was unable to ascertain the details of the goings-on in the ring, but I can only guess that the doctor declared Ahumada fit to continue, but the fighter himself chose not to do so.  I rather think that if the result mattered in my rankings, I would treat it as a no contest, if only because a headbutt scored while behind in the fight hardly justifies the trappings of victory.  As it is, a victory over the unproven Ahumada is of no import to Valori’s resume, and thus the effect is nil.  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) Denis Lebedev (26-162-162)
Last Fight: 12/17/2012- KO4 Santander Silgado (UNR)
Next Fight: 5/17/2013- vs. Guillermo Jones (UNR)
Lebedev will be fighting inactive titlist Guillermo Jones near Moscow on May 17.
2) Yoan Pablo Hernandez (26-142-142)
Last Fight: 9/15/2012- W*(UD12) vs. #20 Troy Ross
Next Fight: Unknown
Hernandez pulled out of his scheduled 2/2 fight with Eric Fields with a fractured hand.
3) Troy Ross (26-26-58)
Last Fight: 9/15/2012- L*(UD12) vs. #1 Yoan Pablo Hernandez
Next Fight: Unknown
Ross deserved to beat Hernandez.
4) Ola Afolabi (5-209-209)
Last Fight: 5/5/2012- Draw* (MD12) vs. #4 Marco Huck
Next Fight: 5/11/2013- vs. #7 Marco Huck
Originally scheduled for May 25, the Huck-Afolabi trilogy fight is now on for May 11 in Hannover, Germany.
5) Krzysztof Wlodarczyk (5-403-403)
Last Fight: 9/22/2012- UD12 #13 Francisco Palacios
Next Fight: Unknown
After Mormeck withdrew with injury, Wlodarczyk has a fight with Fragomeni on the horizon, but probably after a voluntary defense.
6) Firat Arslan (5-44-87)
Last Fight: 11/3/2012- L*(UD12) vs. #5 Marco Huck (Robbery)
Next Fight: Unknown
A rematch with Huck might be in the offing for the summer, but there’s plenty that can happen between now and then.
7) Marco Huck (5-327-327)
Last Fight: 11/3/2012- W*(UD12) vs. #10 Firat Arslan (Robbery)
Next Fight: 5/25/2013- vs. #4 Ola Afolabi
See Afolabi’s notes, above.
8) Lateef Kayode (5-41-121)
Last Fight: 6/2/2012- Draw (SD12) vs. ‘Roided up #3 Antonio Tarver
Next Fight: Unknown
All indications are that Kayode will next fight at heavyweight, but the plan to get him in the ring in February obviously didn’t work.
9) Danny Green (5-18-171)
Last Fight: 11/21/2012- UD12 Shane Cameron (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
As has been the case after every fight since he had very serious surgery a couple years ago, there is speculation that Green may retire following his win over Shane Cameron.  Green himself remains non-committal.
10) B.J. Flores (5-5-142)
Last Fight: 10/6/2012- TKO2 David McNemar (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Flores says on Twitter that he’ll be fighting for a title in May, and has a contract almost signed.  No word yet on the details.
11) Giacobbe Fragomeni (5-226)
Last Fight: 12/15/2012- W*(SD12) vs. #13 Silvio Branco
Next Fight: Unknown
After limping to back-to-back tossup fights with the painfully old Silvio Branco, Fragomeni is now looking to step up to what would have to be seen as a cash-out trilogy fight with the much better Krzysztof Wlodarczyk.
12) Silvio Branco (5-52)
Last Fight: 12/15/2012- L*(SD12) vs. #12 Giacobbe Fragomeni
Next Fight: Unknown
Branco can still hang with whippersnappers like 43 year-old countryman Fragomeni, but you’ve gotta think his active days are numbered at 46.
13) Alexander Alekseev (3-113)
Last Fight: 2/22/2013- UD12* Garrett Wilson (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Alekseev barely squeaked by after building an early lead against Wilson, but it’s still an improvement from his previous fight.
14) Mateusz Masternak (3-50)
Last Fight: 12/15/2012- UD12 Juho Haapoja (UNR)
Next Fight: 4/13/2013- vs. Jeremy Ouanna (UNR)
Masternak will be back on April 13, fighting French gatekeeper Jeremy Ouanna in Vienna.
15) Francisco Palacios (3-102)
Last Fight: 9/22/2012- L(UD12) vs. #7 Krzysztof Wlodarczyk
Next Fight: Unknown
Very little of note left on his resume after his should-be win over Wlodarczyk was neutralized by a close but clear loss to same, and with his win over Louis Azille over 5 years old now.
16) Thabiso Mchunu (5-18)
Last Fight: 11/10/2012- TKO5 #20 Danie Venter
Next Fight: Unknown
The promoter of Congolese prospect Ilunga Makabu has offered to fight Mchunu, but reportedly met with tepid interest from Mchunu’s camp.
17) Dmytro Kucher (5-37)
Last Fight: 12/22/2012- UD8 Willie Herring (UNR)
Next Fight: 3/21/2013- vs. Julio Cesar Dos Santos (UNR)
Kucher’s return is set for March 21 in Kiev against Brazilian journeyman Julio Cesar Dos Santos.
18) Enad Licina (5-142)
Last Fight: 11/10/2012- TKO2 Koeksal Orduhan
Next Fight: Unknown
19) Grigory Drozd (5-18)
Last Fight: 12/17/2012- UD12 Jean-Marc Monrose (UNR)
Next Fight: 6/8/2013- vs. Unknown Opponent
Drozd will apparently be fighting in an unpronounceable Russian town in early June, but no opponent has been named yet.  He suffered a hand injury in his last fight, and is on the shelf from training until April.
20) Pawel Glazewski (5-5)
Last Fight: 2/23/2013- UD10 Bartlomiej Grafka (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
It was with a bit of regret that I chose Glazewski to assume the #20 spot, as I expect him to campaign around the light heavyweight limit for the foreseeable future.

 

THE WEEK AHEAD:  Thursday in Kiev, #17 Dmytro Kucher is set to fight Brazilian mid-level journeyman Julio Cesar Dos Santos.

 

Saturday in Poland, borderline top 50 one-loss prospect Lukasz Janik is in against German journeyman Lars Buchholz.

Cruiserweight: 2012, Dec 17-23

Posted in Cruiserweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on December 22, 2012 by danboxing
We got another inconclusive result in the Giacobbe Fragomeni-Silvio Branco saga on Saturday.  The first third of the fight was essentially even, with #12 Fragomeni coming on strong in the middle rounds, only to fade a bit down the stretch as #13 Branco closed strong.  All three judges- Sergio Silvi (116-112 Fragomeni), Massimo Barrovecchio (115-114 Fragomeni), and Franco Criminale (115-113 Branco)- had reasonable scores.  I had it a draw.  Two fights between the two, and I’ve had them both draws.  It could have been anything between 116-112 Fragomeni and 115-113 Branco without any serious argument from me.  I must say, though, that I don’t like the fact that Barrovecchio’s cop out even round may have made the difference.

 

#14 Mateusz Masternak, on the other hand, had a very easy night against Finnish gatekeeper Juho Haapoja.  Reportedly, he seemed bored with the matchup, and just hung out and won rounds in a boring fight.

 

Finally, on this side of the Atlantic, Argentine fringe contender Alejandro Valori stopped mid-range journeyman Orlando Farias in San Miguel, Argentina via 3rd round TKO.

 

Surprisingly, even though 3 ranked fighters were fighting top-50 opponents, there are no changes to the rankings this week.  Fragomeni and Branco pretty much proved that they belong back to back in the rankings, just as they already were.  And Masternak’s win doesn’t change the fact that he still hasn’t fought anyone in the same league as those guys yet.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: None
1) Denis Lebedev (14-150-150)
Last Fight: 4/4/2012- KO2 Shawn Cox (UNR)
Next Fight: 12/17/2012- vs. Santander Silgado (UNR)
Lebedev has made a decision for his next opponent: Colombian undefeated prospect Santander Silgado.  Silgado figures to be little more than a stay-busy fight for the division’s #1 contender, but it could have been a lot worse.  In addition to a very credible fight with Kayode, a useless fight with journeyman Andres Taylor had also been discussed.
2) Yoan Pablo Hernandez (14-130-130)
Last Fight: 9/15/2012- W*(UD12) vs. #20 Troy Ross
Next Fight: Unknown
Hernandez officially got the win over Ross, and I’m not quite willing to call it a robbery, but it’s pretty close to one.  I think you’d be pushing the limits of reason to give the fight to Hernandez, and I think that even if you managed to do so in terms of rounds won, you’d have to admit that Ross got the better of the fight overall.  Even Hernandez promoter Sauerland admits that Hernandez didn’t deserve a win, and believes a rematch is warranted.
3) Troy Ross (14-14-46)
Last Fight: 9/15/2012- L*(UD12) vs. #1 Yoan Pablo Hernandez
Next Fight: Unknown
Ross deserved to beat Hernandez.  That’s all I’ve got to say (except the more detailed statement I made above).
4) Steve Cunningham (14-444-444)
Last Fight: 9/8/2012- UD10 Jason Gavern (UNR) (at HW)
Next Fight: 12/22/2012- vs. HW #3 Tomasz Adamek (at HW)
With Odlanier Solis’ withdrawal, Cunningham has a chance to avenge his 2008 loss to Tomasz Adamek just before Christmas, at heavyweight.  He’ll retain his ranking here until the anniversary of his February 4 cruiserweight fight, or until he schedules a heavyweight fight for a date after that.
5) Ola Afolabi (7-197-197)
Last Fight: 5/5/2012- Draw* (MD12) vs. #4 Marco Huck
Next Fight: Unknown
Afolabi will fight Huck- likely in March- and will get robbed again in Germany.  There was some talk of a December tune-up, but I haven’t heard anything about that lately.
6) Krzysztof Wlodarczyk (7-391-391)
Last Fight: 9/22/2012- UD12 #13 Francisco Palacios
Next Fight: 2/2/2013- vs. HW #18 Jean-Marc Mormeck
Slowed negotiations have led to a new date of 2/2 for Wlodarczyk-Mormeck.
7) Firat Arslan (7-32-75)
Last Fight: 11/3/2012- L*(UD12) vs. #5 Marco Huck (Robbery)
Next Fight: Unknown
A bizarre twist in Arslan’s schedule this week, as he signed on to save Felix Sturm’s 12/1 show by replacing Ruslan Chagaev as the main support on just 2 days’ notice, but then he mysteriously changed his mind just hours before the bell.
8) Marco Huck (7-315-315)
Last Fight: 11/3/2012- W*(UD12) vs. #10 Firat Arslan (Robbery)
Next Fight: Unknown
Huck will apparently be fighting a 3rd fight with Afolabi in March.  The fight will sadly take place in Germany, nearly ensuring a robbery.
9) Lateef Kayode (7-29-109)
Last Fight: 6/2/2012- Draw (SD12) vs. ‘Roided up #3 Antonio Tarver
Next Fight: Unknown
After he turned down a fight with Lebedev over insufficient prep time, Kayode is once again indicating that his next fight might be at heavyweight.
10) Danny Green (6-6-159)
Last Fight: 11/21/2012- UD12 Shane Cameron (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
As has been the case after every fight since he had very serious surgery a couple years ago, there is speculation that Green may retire following his win over Shane Cameron.  Green himself remains non-committal.
11) B.J. Flores (6-130)
Last Fight: 10/6/2012- TKO2 David McNemar (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Flores’ level of opposition lately is consistent with that of a protected undefeated prospect rather than a veteran contender trying to get back on top.  He’s completely treading water at this point in his career.
12) Giacobbe Fragomeni (6-214)
Last Fight: 12/15/2012- W*(SD12) vs. #13 Silvio Branco
Next Fight: Unknown
You’ve gotta wonder if Fragomeni might consider calling it a career after now twice failing to conclusively beat 46-year old Branco.
13) Silvio Branco (6-40)
Last Fight: 12/15/2012- L*(SD12) vs. #12 Giacobbe Fragomeni
Next Fight: Unknown
Branco can still hang with whippersnappers like 43 year-old countryman Fragomeni, but you’ve gotta think his active days are numbered at 46.
14) Mateusz Masternak (6-38)
Last Fight: 12/15/2012- UD12 Juho Haapoja (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Masternak just put it on cruise control and walked away with a European title belt.
15) Francisco Palacios (6-90)
Last Fight: 9/22/2012- L(UD12) vs. #7 Krzysztof Wlodarczyk
Next Fight: Unknown
Very little of note left on his resume after his should-be win over Wlodarczyk was neutralized by a close but clear loss to same, and with his win over Louis Azille over 5 years old now.
16) Alexander Alekseev (6-101)
Last Fight: 5/11/2012- Draw*(MD12) vs. #19 Firat Arslan (robbery- should have been L)
Next Fight: Unknown
Apparently there are talks underway for Alekseev to fight American fringe contender Garrett Wilson.
17) Thabiso Mchunu (6-6)
Last Fight: 11/10/2012- TKO5 #20 Danie Venter
Next Fight: Unknown
Mchunu is probably ready to take the Chilemba/Oosthuizen journey out of South Africa and into the international scene after conquering the local scene in the form of Venter.  He may have some unfinished business with Zack Mwekassa first, however.
18) Dmitro Kucher (8-25)
Last Fight: 10/27/2012- KO2 Steve Herelius (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Kucher took out one-time contender Steve Herelius in spectacular fashion, making him definitively one to watch.
19) Enad Licina (8-130)
Last Fight: 11/10/2012- TKO2 Koeksal Orduhan
Next Fight: Unknown
Really, Enad?  He just fought the most obviously terrible opponent I think I’ve ever had to write about on here.  The record of said fighter?  0-15.  No joke.
20) Grigory Drozd (6-6)
Last Fight: 6/20/2012- TKO1 Fabio Garrido (UNR)
Next Fight: 12/17/2012- vs. Jean-Marc Monrose (UNR)
Drozd now has an opponent for 12/17: French journeyman Jean-Marc Monrose.  They will do battle on the Lebedev-Silgado undercard.

 

THE WEEK AHEAD: We’re off and running bright and early in the week with a cruiserweight-heavy card in Moscow.  #1 Denis Lebedev headlines with a tilt against undefeated Colombian prospect Santander Silgado.  On the undercard, #20 Grigory Drozd sees action against French journeyman Jean-Marc Monrose.  Monrose was briefly a contender after shocking unbeaten Johny Jensen in 2008, but was chopped back down to Earth by 4 consecutive losses between then and 2010.

 

Fast forward to Saturday, when Brazil’s two best cruiserweights meet up in Sao Paolo.  William Fernando Souza Bezerra is undefeated, and none of his 32 opponents have lasted the distance.  Ricardo Augusto Souza has only one loss.  The bad news?  That one loss was a two-round, three-knockdown drubbing at the hands of Souza Bezerra less than a year ago.  Souza has been very busy and effective since the loss, though, stopping 8 opponents in a row.  Anybody want to bet this one doesn’t go the distance?  This fight is for Souza Bezerra’s Brazilian title, which is very legitimate.  It’s also being billed as a South American title fight.  Souza Bezerra won that vacant title in October 2010 over a guy who was not one of the top contenders by any legitimate measure.  The true South American champion can only be determined at present by a matchup between Souza Bezerra and Alejandro Valori of Argentina- a fight I’d certainly like to see.