Archive for Denis Lebedev

Cruiserweight: 2014, Jul 14-20

Posted in Cruiserweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on November 25, 2014 by danboxing
Nathan Cleverly and Tony Bellew remained on their collision course for presumably late this year, as both men took care of business on Saturday.  Cleverly led off by scoring a 4th round TKO over Argentine gatekeeper Alejandro Valori, who was dropped twice by body shots from the former light heavyweight contender.  Cleverly actually struggled more than just a little bit in the first round, as he was caught with several flush shots from the wild-swinging Valori.  The Argentine seemed to get a bit tired pretty quick though, especially after the first knockdown, which came early in the 2nd round.  He was still game and mounted the occasional offensive, sometimes even catching Cleverly clean with a shot or two, but Cleverly seems to have moved up strong to 200, and was never visibly bothered by anything.  Valori showed valor, and did get up after the second crushing body shot knockdown, but he wobbled right at about the count of 8, which gave referee Terry O’Connor all the reason he needed to call it off.  The Sky broadcast team repeatedly implied that Valori was practically a bum off the street compared to Bellew’s opponent, which I don’t get.  He was cruder, it’s fair to say, but the guy is the class of a solid Argentine scene, and quite legitimately ranked in the top 50 by Boxrec.  It was a nice little win for the Welshman, in my view.

 

Bellew had a similarly successful outing with Julio Cesar Dos Santos of Brazil, a high-level journeyman who was treated like a serious contender by the Sky team.  I would give him enough credit to say that he’s a tough nut to crack.  His defense is very sturdy, and so Bellew had to be content to poke away and score points against the Brazilian, who wasn’t throwing much himself.  He did tag Bellew once or twice in a close 3rd, but that was about all he could manage offensively.  In the 5th, he got caught hooking with a hooker, and Bellew made him pay by driving him hard to the seat of his pants.  Dos Santos staggered as he pulled himself to his feet, which was enough for Phil Edwards to call it off despite his looking relatively steady by the completion of the 8 count.  

 

Going back to Thursday, undefeated Cuban Yunier Dorticos got a wide decision win over faded former middleweight contender Edison Miranda in Miami.  Fox Sports 1 picked the fight up at the halfway point, so I can only speak with any detail of the last half.  For that last half, Miranda was very much a live dog, getting an occasional shot in, and showing a good chin even 40 pounds up from his prime fighting weight.  Dorticos, for his part, seemed to be tiring for the part of the fight I saw, and his punches were consequently not as concise as I’d expect, while his defense was a bit on the lax side.  Still, considering I only came in at round 6, it wasn’t bad, and his overall ability was still more than enough to handle Miranda.  I scored 4 of the 5 rounds for Dorticos, with only one other round being a toss-up that could go to Miranda.  I can’t give you a true range of scores or my exact score.  I will say that Bob Sheridan and Raul Marquez both said the 6th, which Dorticos clearly one, was Miranda’s best round to that point.  If that’s the case, you might assume a shutout through 5.  With that being assumed, my score would be 99-91, with 98-92 also being a reasonable score.  Judge Alex Levin had it 99-91, which I’m obviously okay with.  Judges Rocky Young and Richard Green both had it a shutout, which, with all due respect, are not credible scores.

 

Cleverly’s debut at the serious level of the cruiserweight division is enough to cut through the soft 4th quarter of the top 20 like the butter it basically is, and he ends up at #14.  Everyone ranked #14-17 last week falls a spot.  #18 Dmytro Kucher is removed for inactivity, which allows #19 and 20 Seferi and Perdomo to maintain their rankings.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: None
1) Marco Huck (9-397-397)
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 (9-212-212)
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 (9-232-232)
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 (44-473-473)
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 (25-50-88)
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 (25-114-157)
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 (34-41-88)
Last Fight: 3/15/2014- KO1 Jeremy Ouanna (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
8) Rakhim Chakhkiev (7-7-7)
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 (3-3-53)
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 (3-279-279)
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 (3-37)
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 (3-14)
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 (3-4)
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) Nathan Cleverly (1-1)
Last Fight: 7/12/2014- TKO4 Alejandro Valori (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Cleverly will likely fight Bellew in November, give or take.
15) Giacobbe Fragomeni (1-296)
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.
16) Mateusz Masternak (1-120)
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.
17) Santander Silgado (1-37)
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.
18) Danie Venter (1-44)
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.
19) Nuri Seferi (4-30)
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 (4-14)
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: 
Saturday
Victor Ramirez vs. Cleiton Conceicao; Benavidez, Argentina; TyC Sports (Argentina)
Ramirez is a former fringe contender who hasn’t done much of anything in over 5 years, having been essentially retired for the majority of that time.  He takes on Brazil’s Conceicao, who put forth very little effort in the direction of winning in losing by 14 points on my card in a 12-rounder against later exposed German prospect Dustin Dirks a couple years ago.  Ramirez should eat him alive, even if he’s not what he once was.

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, Jun 16-22

Posted in Cruiserweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on November 7, 2014 by danboxing
Two-loss Nigerian prospect Olanrewaju Durodola notched an apparently easy win over an easy opponent in low-level New Mexico journeyman Max Heyman on Friday in St. Joseph, Missouri, stopping his man early in the 2nd round.

 

No changes.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: None
1) Marco Huck (5-393-393)
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.  Ovill McKenzie would like to fight him.
2) Yoan Pablo Hernandez (5-208-208)
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 (5-228-228)
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 (40-469-469)
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 (21-46-84)
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 (21-110-153)
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 (30-37-84)
Last Fight: 3/15/2014- KO1 Jeremy Ouanna (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
See Wlodarczyk’s notes, above.
8) Rakhim Chakhkiev (3-3-3)
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) Ola Afolabi (3-275-275)
Last Fight: 11/2/2013- W* (MD12) vs. Lukasz Janik (UNR)
Next Fight: 7/26/2014- vs. Pawel Kolodziej (UNR)
After we got no news on the fight for months, Afolabi-Kolodziej is now scheduled for the Golovkin-Geale undercard on July 26.
10) Giacobbe Fragomeni (3-40-292)
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.
11) Ilunga Makabu (3-49)
Last Fight: 2/1/2014- TKO2 Ruben Angel Mino (UNR)
Next Fight: 6/28/2014- vs. Glen Johnson (UNR)
Initially sketchy reports of a June 28 fight with Glen Johnson appear true.
12) Mateusz Masternak (8-116)
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 (8-33)
Last Fight: 11/2/2013- L* (MD12) vs. #7 Ola Afolabi
Next Fight: 6/28/2014- vs. Rico Hoye (UNR)
Janik will dredge up a name from the past when he fights Rico Hoye on June 28.
14) Ovill McKenzie (8-10)
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.
15) Santander Silgado (3-33)
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.
16) Danie Venter (3-40)
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.
17) Dmytro Kucher (3-103)
Last Fight: 7/13/2013- L (MD12) vs. Ilunga Makabu (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
The inactive Kucher may now be in danger of losing his ranking in the next couple months, as his stay-busy fight in late May did not come off.
18) Nuri Seferi (3-26)
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.
19) Gusmyr Perdomo (3-10)
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.
20) Yunier Dorticos (3-9)
Last Fight: 4/16/2014- KO4 Eric Fields (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown

 

THE WEEK AHEAD: 
Saturday
#12 Mateusz Masternak vs. Youri Kayembre Kalenga; Monte Carlo, Monaco; PolSat Sport (Poland)
This is for a silly alphabet title, but that’s meaningless.  The real importance of the fight is that it’s Masternak’s first serious fight since his stoppage loss to Drozd back in October.  Kalenga is a Congolese prospect who throws recklessly wild punches almost exclusively, throwing his entire body behind every shot.  This gives him the power he needed for his upset knockout win over fellow unbeaten Iago Kiladze a year ago, as well as for his knockout of gatekeeper Cesar Crenz in his last fight in February.  It also was a likely reason he was dominated by sub-.500 journeyman Arturs Kulikauskis in September.  Kalenga is an all-or-nothing guy, and the fact that he’s gotten nothing against a guy wayyyyy below Masternak’s level in the past makes it hard to pick against the Polish prospect in this one.

 

Also, Chad Dawson takes on journeyman George Blades in Carson, California, but even though it’s contracted at 179, I’ll treat it as a light heavyweight fight, since its most likely impact is in that division.

Cruiserweight: 2014, Jun 9-15

Posted in Cruiserweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on October 31, 2014 by danboxing
In the week’s biggest cruiserweight fight, #14 and Commonwealth Champion Ovill McKenzie took the fight to British Champion Jon-Lewis Dickinson from the opening bell in Newcastle, England.  Nothing flashy initially, but just hitting Dickinson with solid shots, mostly to the body, and taking the first round clearly.  Dickinson still hadn’t gotten fully untracked, it seemed, when at the bell to end the 2nd, McKenzie hit him with a nice left hook on the temple and behind the gloves, followed by a hard right hand between said gloves and on the chin.  This stretched Dickinson out, and though he was up well before 8, he staggered back at the conclusion of the mandatory count, just as Victor Loughlin was looking to certify him to continue, and necessitating a stoppage.  McKenzie has never won a fight that lasted past 6 rounds in his long career, and so I think it likely that Dickinson wasn’t trying to take any chances, and was probably just trying to feel out McKenzie for 3 or 4 rounds.  The Jamaican native has too much power to even stand in front of him defensively though.  I’ll bet that Dickinson would have mixed in more movement if he had it to do over.  McKenzie now owns the British and Commonwealth title (he lives in Derbyshire now), and says he wants to move on to a European title, or perhaps a world title shot in the near future.  He named Marco Huck as a person of particular interest.

 

#6 Firat Arslan was in a stay-busy fight with a sub-.500 Hungarian fighter in Schwerin named Tamas Bajzath.  To the best of my ability to find, it was not televised, but just from the scores (80-71 unanimously) it appears that Arslan won every round and most likely threw in a knockdown.

 

The same night in Tolfa, Italy, undefeated Italian Mirko Larghetti dropped his own low-level Hungarian, Attila Palko, twice in the 2nd, including the second time for the full count.  This was essentially a tune-up ahead of a planned shot at Marco Huck.

 

#5 Thabiso Mchunu was supposed to be in with a Brazilian prospect on Saturday, but that fight didn’t come off. 

 

No movement in the rankings will occur because of the week’s fights.  McKenzie is still stuck behind Janik, who comes off what should be a win over a #7 contender.  McKenzie has uniformly lost to guys who would so much as go on to that level, and has no fights against guys that were at that level at the time.  Dickinson also stays put, for what it’s worth, unofficially just a few spots shy of the top 25.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: None
1) Marco Huck (4-392-392)
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.  Ovill McKenzie would like to fight him.
2) Yoan Pablo Hernandez (4-207-207)
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 (4-227-227)
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 (39-468-468)
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 (20-45-83)
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 (20-109-152)
Last Fight: 6/7/2014- UD8 Tamas Bajzath (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Arslan wasn’t scheduled to fight this weekend, but on short notice, he’ll replace an injured Ruslan Chagaev on the Schwerin undercard of Braehmer-Bolonti.  His opponent is a hopeless Hungarian.
7) Grigory Drozd (29-36-83)
Last Fight: 3/15/2014- KO1 Jeremy Ouanna (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
See Wlodarczyk’s notes, above.
8) Rakhim Chakhkiev (2-2-2)
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) Ola Afolabi (2-274-274)
Last Fight: 11/2/2013- W* (MD12) vs. Lukasz Janik (UNR)
Next Fight: 7/26/2014- vs. Pawel Kolodziej (UNR)
After we got no news on the fight for months, Afolabi-Kolodziej is now scheduled for the Golovkin-Geale undercard on July 26.
10) Giacobbe Fragomeni (2-39-291)
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.
11) Ilunga Makabu (2-48)
Last Fight: 2/1/2014- TKO2 Ruben Angel Mino (UNR)
Next Fight: 6/28/2014- vs. Glen Johnson (UNR)
Initially sketchy reports of a June 28 fight with Glen Johnson appear true.
12) Mateusz Masternak (7-115)
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 (7-32)
Last Fight: 11/2/2013- L* (MD12) vs. #7 Ola Afolabi
Next Fight: 6/28/2014- vs. Rico Hoye (UNR)
Janik will dredge up a name from the past when he fights Rico Hoye on June 28.
14) Ovill McKenzie (7-9)
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.
15) Santander Silgado (2-32)
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.
16) Danie Venter (2-39)
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.
17) Dmytro Kucher (2-102)
Last Fight: 7/13/2013- L (MD12) vs. Ilunga Makabu (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
The inactive Kucher may now be in danger of losing his ranking in the next couple months, as his stay-busy fight in late May did not come off.
18) Nuri Seferi (2-25)
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.
19) Gusmyr Perdomo (2-9)
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.
20) Yunier Dorticos (2-8)
Last Fight: 4/16/2014- KO4 Eric Fields (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown

 

THE WEEK AHEAD: 
Friday
Olanrewaju Durodola vs. Max Heyman; St. Joseph, Missouri; Off TV
Durodola is a Nigerian based in Kansas City.  He has an impressive physique and flashed a lot of power in the amateurs.  His pro results have been mixed, but in his only TV exposure to this point, he made a decent account of himself against Thabiso Mchunu, who was coming off a dominating performance against Eddie Chambers.  Heyman is a low-level journeyman from Albuquerque, New Mexico who ought to have no chance whatsoever.

Cruiserweight: 2014, May 12-18

Posted in Cruiserweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on October 11, 2014 by danboxing
Former light heavyweight fringe contender Thierry Karl, who had been cutting a vicious swath through the European level at 175 back around 2009, returned from a 2-year layoff on Wednesday in his native France, taking a 8-round points decision over 9-9 low-level journeyman Tamas Bajzath.  That’s got to be seen as a disappointment, considering that at his best, he was stopping the likes of Nadjib Mohammedi.  Boxrec has him well outside the top 50 with his layoff, though I think that’s a little harsh given how thin cruiserweight really is.

 

Inactive contender BJ Flores got in the ring for the first time in more than 18 months on Saturday on the Stiverne-Arreola undercard in LA, knocking out total non-entity Adam Collins in less than 2 minutes.  Unfortunately for Flores and his fans, he came in more than 5 pounds over the cruiserweight limit, and is thus not eligible for a re-ranking.

 

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 (42-223-223)
Last Fight: 5/17/2013- L (TKO11) vs. Guillermo Jones (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Hopefully Lebedev can get back in the ring soon after Jones fell out of the fight with a second consecutive positive Furosemide test.
2) Marco Huck (16-388-388)
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.
3) Yoan Pablo Hernandez (16-203-203)
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 (35-464-464)
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 (16-41-79)
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 (16-105-148)
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 (25-32-79)
Last Fight: 3/15/2014- KO1 Jeremy Ouanna (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
See Wlodarczyk’s notes, above.
8) Ola Afolabi (25-270-270)
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 (25-35-287)
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 (3-3-44)
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 (3-28)
Last Fight: 11/1/2013- TKO2 #20 Steve Herelius
Next Fight: 6/6/2014- vs. #15 Danie Venter
Silgado will apparently now be fighting in South Africa on June 6 in a very good matchup with Danie Venter.
12) Mateusz Masternak (3-111)
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 (3-28)
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 (3-5)
Last Fight: 4/12/2014- KO5 #18 Tony Conquest
Next Fight: 5/31/2014- 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 the Froch-Groves undercard.
15) Danie Venter (3-35)
Last Fight: 9/21/2013- KO1 Shawn Cox (UNR)
Next Fight: 6/6/2014- vs. #11 Santander Silgado
A big opportunity for Venter, as he takes on a potentially overrated Silgado in his own back yard.
16) Dmytro Kucher (3-98)
Last Fight: 7/13/2013- L (MD12) vs. Ilunga Makabu (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
17) Nuri Seferi (3-21)
Last Fight: 4/11/2014- Robbery Win (should be draw) vs. Gusmyr Perdomo (UNR)
Next Fight: 5/16/2014- vs. Tamas Lodi (UNR)
A quick turnaround for Seferi, and unfortunately no immediate rematch for Perdomo, as Seferi will take on Hungarian prospect Tamas Lodi in Hamburg on May 16.
18) Gusmyr Perdomo (3-5)
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 (3-4)
Last Fight: 4/16/2014- KO4 Eric Fields (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
20) Krzysztof Glowacki (3-3)
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: 
Wednesday
Murat Gassiev vs. George Tevdorashvili; Vladikavkaz, Russia; TV Unknown
Gassiev is an undefeated native of Vladikavkaz who is coming off his best win thus far in his career against quality journeyman Ismail Abdoul back in February.  Tevdorashvili is a Georgian journeyman who has been in with some decent names, but seldom escapes from that type of fight without a loss.  He was beaten by Abdoul back in 2012.

 

Thursday
Stivens Bujaj vs. Junior Wright; Brighton Beach, New York; Comcast Sportsnet (US)
Bujaj is an undefeated Albanian who makes his home in New York.  He’s flashed solid power against middling opposition, and is coming off a TKO over journeyman Victor Barragan.  Wright is also undefeated, but has been in softer than Bujaj so far.  He’s knocked out all but one of his opponents so far, and comes off a 4th round knockout of travelling midwestern opponent-type Galen Brown.  Bujaj has proven more than Wright so far, but this one could go either way.  I’ve seen neither guy so far, personally.  It appears this will be televised by Comcast Sportsnet.  I don’t know what that is, to be honest, but I assume it’s only available to Comcast cable subscribers.  Not sure if that’s national or local only.  Hopefully I can see a video one way or another.

 

Friday
#17 Nuri Seferi vs. Tamas Lodi; Hamburg, Germany; Eurosport 2
Seferi, of Albania, looks to rebound from a fight he was lucky to escape without a loss against Gusmyr Perdomo, just over a month ago.  Lodi is a Hungarian one-loss prospect.  He was destroyed in his first serious fight against Ilunga Makabu, whom he had no business fighting at that point.  In his most difficult match-up apart from that, back in November, Lodi got what was probably a slight upset in knocking out undefeated Janne Forsman.  Seferi ought to win this, but I wouldn’t totally rule out the Hungarian, given recent form.

 

Saturday
#10 LHW Nathan Cleverly vs. Shawn Corbin; Cardiff, Wales; Sky (UK)
Cleverly makes his long-awaited debut at cruiserweight, in a fight that’s more or less intended to set up a showdown with bitter English rival Tony Bellew.  Corbin is the very definition of a mid-level journeyman, whose crowning achievement was a shocking decision that ended the would-be comeback of a faded Wayne Braithwaite back in 2012.

Cruiserweight: 2014, May 5-11

Posted in Cruiserweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on October 5, 2014 by danboxing
Last week was a quiet one at 200.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: None
1) Denis Lebedev (41-222-222)
Last Fight: 5/17/2013- L (TKO11) vs. Guillermo Jones (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Hopefully Lebedev can get back in the ring soon after Jones fell out of the fight with a second consecutive positive Furosemide test.
2) Marco Huck (15-387-387)
Last Fight:1/25/2014- TKO6 #5 Firat Arslan
Next Fight: Unknown
Huck fractured his thumb in training, and his fight with Mirko Larghetti is off.
3) Yoan Pablo Hernandez (15-202-202)
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 (34-463-463)
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 (15-40-78)
Last Fight: 1/24/2014- UD10 Olanrewaju Durodola (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
6) Firat Arslan (15-104-147)
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 (24-31-78)
Last Fight: 3/15/2014- KO1 Jeremy Ouanna (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
See Wlodarczyk’s notes, above.
8) Ola Afolabi (24-269-269)
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 (24-34-286)
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 (2-2-43)
Last Fight: 2/1/2014- TKO2 Ruben Angel Mino (UNR)
Next Fight: 6/21/2014- vs. #12 Mateusz Masternak
Makabu will fight Masternak in a heck of a match-up on June 21 in Monaco.
11) Santander Silgado (2-27)
Last Fight: 11/1/2013- TKO2 #20 Steve Herelius
Next Fight: 6/6/2014- vs. #15 Danie Venter
Silgado will apparently now be fighting in South Africa on June 6 in a very good matchup with Danie Venter.
12) Mateusz Masternak (2-110)
Last Fight: 4/12/2014- UD8 Stjepan Vugdelija (UNR)
Next Fight: 6/21/2014- vs. #10 Ilunga Makabu
See Makabu’s notes, above.
13) Lukasz Janik (2-27)
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 (2-4)
Last Fight: 4/12/2014- KO5 #18 Tony Conquest
Next Fight: Unknown
McKenzie is at cruiserweight mainly because he can’t get fights at 175.  He doesn’t seem married to the idea of staying at this weight, and has mentioned wanting a shot at Juergen Braehmer.
15) Danie Venter (2-34)
Last Fight: 9/21/2013- KO1 Shawn Cox (UNR)
Next Fight: 6/6/2014- vs. #11 Santander Silgado
A big opportunity for Venter, as he takes on a potentially overrated Silgado in his own back yard.
16) Dmytro Kucher (2-97)
Last Fight: 7/13/2013- L (MD12) vs. Ilunga Makabu (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
17) Nuri Seferi (2-20)
Last Fight: 4/11/2014- Robbery Win (should be draw) vs. Gusmyr Perdomo (UNR)
Next Fight: 5/16/2014- vs. Tamas Lodi (UNR)
A quick turnaround for Seferi, and unfortunately no immediate rematch for Perdomo, as Seferi will take on mid-level Hungarian journeyman Tamas Lodi in Hamburg on May 16.
18) Gusmyr Perdomo (2-4)
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 (2-3)
Last Fight: 4/16/2014- KO4 Eric Fields (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
20) Krzysztof Glowacki (2-2)
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: 
Wednesday
Thierry Karl vs. Tamas Bajzath; Sainte Quentin, France; TV Unknown
Karl was a major contender at light heavyweight when I began these rankings a few years back, but his career was badly derailed by a comprehensive beating at the hands of Danny McIntosh in early 2011.  He hasn’t had a consequential fight since, and this will do nothing to change that.

 

B.J. Flores vs. Adam Collins; Los Angeles, California; Off TV
This is all about Flores simply getting back in the ring.  He’s a borderline top 10 contender when active, and perhaps underrated at that status.  Yet he hasn’t fought since October 2012.  If he makes 200 for the fight, though, and avoids what would be a disastrous loss, he’ll easily be back in the rankings next week.  His opponent is a very low-level journeyman from Ohio.

Cruiserweight: 2014, Apr 28- May 4

Posted in Cruiserweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on October 1, 2014 by danboxing
The division’s biggest event of the week was the cancellation of Lebedev-Jones II.  Jones failed a drug test for Furosemide, the same banned diuretic (and potential steroid masking agent) he was busted for after their original fight, and which he had been busted for earlier in his career.  I don’t know if Guillermo Jones is this dumb, or if someone on his team is, or both.  Either way, someone is REALLY dumb.  Jones is nearly 42 years old, and is probably done in the sport, at least when it comes to serious contention.  The only remaining question is what becomes of Lebedev’s ranking if he isn’t able to get another fight scheduled within the next couple weeks.  I’m leaning towards giving him a couple extra months given the eye injuries that must have delayed this meeting, and given the foul play that may have played a part in those injuries and which torpedoed this fight on just one day’s notice.

 

#9 Giacobbe Fragomeni got a 6-round stay-busy outing in, pounding out an as-expected 2nd round TKO victory over 7-8 journeyman Olegs Lopajevs of Latvia on Saturday in Rho, Italy.  Lopajevs tried hard, but he clearly didn’t have the skill or physical tools to compete on this level, even with a fading 44 year-old contender like Fragomeni.

 

On the Klitschko-Leapai undercard in Oberhausen, Germany, fast-rising undefeated Ukrainian Oleksandr Usyk dominated and stopped Ghanaian journeyman Ben Nsafoah in what was really a major step down in competition from each of 2012 Olympian Usyk’s first two fights, both of which were against upper-level type journeymen in Epifanio Mendoza and Felipe Romero.  Nsafoah certainly looked intimidating, having a splendidly muscled-physique that would be at home in the Mr. Universe competition, but save for a couple isolated moments, he was entirely in survival mode for the roughly 2 1/2 rounds before he was stopped, having tasted the canvas twice in quick succession.  He managed to frustrate Usyk’s attack for long stretches by bobbing and weaving on the ropes, but he seldom gave the Ukrainian anything to worry about on the other end.

 

Last week’s #10 Silvio Branco- 47 years young- finally decided to hang them up, and did it mostly on his own terms.  He didn’t always get the results he deserved in recent years, but he hung with top 10 opposition at his advanced age, at the very least.  Happy Retirement, Il Barbaro.  Branco is removed due to his retirement, and everyone ranked #11 and below last week advances.  Ilunga Makabu makes his debut in the top 10 with the vacancy, and Krzysztof Glowacki returns at #20 after a brief one-week stint on the outside.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: None
1) Denis Lebedev (40-221-221)
Last Fight: 5/17/2013- L (TKO11) vs. Guillermo Jones (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Hopefully Lebedev can get back in the ring soon after Jones fell out of the fight with a second consecutive positive Furosemide test.
2) Marco Huck (14-386-386)
Last Fight:1/25/2014- TKO6 #5 Firat Arslan
Next Fight: Unknown
Huck fractured his thumb in training, and his fight with Mirko Larghetti is off.
3) Yoan Pablo Hernandez (14-201-201)
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 (33-462-462)
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 (14-39-77)
Last Fight: 1/24/2014- UD10 Olanrewaju Durodola (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
6) Firat Arslan (14-103-146)
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 (23-30-77)
Last Fight: 3/15/2014- KO1 Jeremy Ouanna (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
See Wlodarczyk’s notes, above.
8) Ola Afolabi (23-268-268)
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 (23-33-285)
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 (1-1-42)
Last Fight: 2/1/2014- TKO2 Ruben Angel Mino (UNR)
Next Fight: 6/21/2014- vs. #12 Mateusz Masternak
Makabu will fight Masternak in a heck of a match-up on June 21 in Monaco.
11) Santander Silgado (1-26)
Last Fight: 11/1/2013- TKO2 #20 Steve Herelius
Next Fight: 5/17/2014- vs. Unknown Opponent
Silgado is scheduled to return against an unannounced opponent on May 17 in Arjona, Colombia.
12) Mateusz Masternak (1-109)
Last Fight: 4/12/2014- UD8 Stjepan Vugdelija (UNR)
Next Fight: 6/21/2014- vs. #10 Ilunga Makabu
See Makabu’s notes, above.
13) Lukasz Janik (1-26)
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 (1-3)
Last Fight: 4/12/2014- KO5 #18 Tony Conquest
Next Fight: Unknown
McKenzie is at cruiserweight mainly because he can’t get fights at 175.  He doesn’t seem married to the idea of staying at this weight, and has mentioned wanting a shot at Juergen Braehmer.
15) Danie Venter (1-33)
Last Fight: 9/21/2013- KO1 Shawn Cox (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
16) Dmytro Kucher (1-96)
Last Fight: 7/13/2013- L (MD12) vs. Ilunga Makabu (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
17) Nuri Seferi (1-19)
Last Fight: 4/11/2014- Robbery Win (should be draw) vs. Gusmyr Perdomo (UNR)
Next Fight: 5/16/2014- vs. Tamas Lodi (UNR)
A quick turnaround for Seferi, and unfortunately no immediate rematch for Perdomo, as Seferi will take on mid-level Hungarian journeyman Tamas Lodi in Hamburg on May 16.
18) Gusmyr Perdomo (1-3)
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 (1-2)
Last Fight: 4/16/2014- KO4 Eric Fields (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
20) Krzysztof Glowacki (1-1)
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: No action to report this week.