Archive for Francis Cheka

Light Heavyweight: 2014, Apr 21-27

Posted in Light Heavyweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on September 24, 2014 by danboxing
Saturday in Atlantic City, #2 Bernard Hopkins continued to redefine what we know about aging in sports.  Now let’s not go crazy over it.  Beibut Shumenov, especially if you gave any credence to his title as “Super Champion” or even simply Champion, was vastly overrated.  He’s been inactive, and his level of competition has been abysmal for years now.  For all the disrespect he got from the media and fans, Karo Murat was a much more qualified challenger, and I think allowed Hopkins to prove more than did the Kazakh.  All that said, this was a really impressive outing for “the Alien.”  Whatever else you can say about Shumenov, he was a reasonably young, fairly strong, warm body that Hopkins utterly dominated.  I had it 119-108, giving Shumenov only the 10th, and even that one was a toss-up.  Hopkins was ridiculously accurate with his shots, and predictably crafty throughout.  As for the Kazakh, he was limited to throwing one supremely wild inaccurate punch at a time, and really could scarcely hit the Philadelphian with a 10-foot pole.  Hopkins even added insult to injury with an 11th-round knockdown.  The judges should probably be committed en masse for psychiatric evaluation- particularly Gustavo Padilla, who somehow had it 114-113 for Shumenov, which is potentially more inexplicable a card in his favor than those he got in his second fight with Campillo (that being one of the most notorious robberies of modern times).  Shumenov gets such consistently insane favors from the judges on the rare occasion that he actually fights, that I really honestly have to wonder if there’s some illicit money changing hands…especially when he also is inexplicably loved by the WBA more strongly than one would expect from his own mother, from all indications.  Jerry Roth and Dave Moretti both turned in head-scratching, but less inflammatory cards of 116-111 Hopkins.  I personally don’t see how anyone could have it closer than 117-110.  Keep in mind that I’m not historically a guy that has been warm to Hopkins’ style in my scoring.

 

In a low-profile upset that is nevertheless rather significant, Tanzanian gatekeeper Francis Cheka probably punched his final ticket on his connecting flight to obscurity, notching just a majority draw in his 8-rounder with…wait for it…Iranian undefeated prospect Sajjad Mehrabi.  Look, maybe Mehrabi is the chosen one.  Maybe he’ll singlehandedly turn Iran into a global boxing power and vindicate their all but non-existent fight scene.  But it’s hard to put much faith in the Persian’s world-class credentials at this point, considering that Cheka is the first guy he’s fought with even the faintest hint of a pulse, and yet he already had a prior draw on his record.  There’s no video out there of the fight, so I can’t opine on the scoring…but you’ve gotta wonder if it might even be worse than it looks for the veteran from Africa, who couldn’t even negotiate a victory in his home country.  To make matters worse, Mehrabi is a natural middleweight.

 

No movement in the rankings from the Hopkins-Shumenov fight, as it’s exactly what you’d expect from fighters of their respective ranks.  Mehrabi technically now is qualified for a ranking, but he’s not even in my unofficial top 50, and he’ll need to be proven substantially more than this to get within shouting distance of a ranking.

 

No changes this week.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (weeks in current position-weeks   in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: Andre Ward (85-85-85)
Last Fight: 11/16/2013- UD12 #15 Edwin Rodriguez (as SMW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Kovalev’s promoter has zeroed in on the inactive Ward as an “inevitable” future opponent.
1) Adonis Stevenson (46-46-46)
Last Fight: 11/30/2013- TKO6 #6 Tony Bellew
Next Fight: 5/24/2014- vs. #6 Andrzej Fonfara
In something of a coup, Stevenson-Fonfara will be carried by Showtime.   This not only further diminishes HBO’s stable of top fighters, but also puts in serious doubt the plausibility of what appeared to be an upcoming megafight with Kovalev.
2) Bernard Hopkins (85-411-411)
Last Fight: 4/19/2014- W (SD12*) vs. Beibut Shumenov (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Hopkins continued looking good against competent, if unspectacular, opposition.  Pay no attention to the insane split decision verdict.  It was a domination.  In the aftermath, B-Hop has called out Stevenson.
3) Jean Pascal (14-14-14)
Last Fight: 1/18/2014- UD12 #16 Lucian Bute
Next Fight: Unknown
Pascal is pencilled in for a September fight, and perhaps one more before the end of the year.  Prospective opponents, in order, are Sean Monaghan and Lucian Bute.  He wants Stevenson after that, assuming he comes through cleanly.
4) Sergey Kovalev (14-66-66)
Last Fight: 3/29/2014- KO7 #15 Cedric Agnew
Next Fight: Unknown
Kovalev had some choice words for Stevenson after the Haitian defected to Showtime and, apparently, scuttled their much-hyped matchup for later this year.  No news yet on what Kovalev’s next move will be after the development.
5) Chad Dawson (14-412-412)
Last Fight: 6/8/2013- L(TKO1) vs. SMW #6 Adonis Stevenson
Next Fight: Unknown
Dawson has signed a deal with manager Al Haymon, which certainly brightens his career prospects.  He says he is interested in a Stevenson rematch.  Prospects for another occasionally-discussed rematch- with Jean Pascal- increased recently with word that Pascal’s trainer offered Dawson a contract.
6) Andrzej Fonfara (14-36-93)
Last Fight: 12/6/2013- KO2 Samuel Miller (UNR)
Next Fight: 5/24/2014- vs. #1 Adonis Stevenson
See Stevenson’s notes, above.
7) Tony Bellew (14-132-132)
Last Fight: 3/15/2014- KO12 Valery Brudov (UNR) (at CW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Bellew is campaigning at cruiserweight now, but he’ll keep his ranking here until he schedules a fight there for after November 30, or until after November 30 itself.  BJ Flores wants to fight him, but it sounds like he’ll fight Cleverly before the year is out.
8) Gabriel Campillo (14-200-200)
Last Fight: 8/16/2013- L (KO9) vs. #14 Andrzej Fonfara
Next Fight: 5/9/2014- vs. Ricky Pow (UNR)
Campillo has replaced one low-level tune-up opponent with another, as Ibrahim Lopez is out and Ricky Pow is in for Campillo’s May 9 Madrid date.
9) Tavoris Cloud (14-243-243)
Last Fight: 9/28/2013- L (TKO7) vs. #1 Adonis Stevenson
Next Fight: Unknown
Cloud should probably get himself back in the win column at some point.
10) Nathan Cleverly (14-220-220)
Last Fight: 8/17/2013- L (TKO4) vs. #3 Sergey Kovalev
Next Fight: 5/17/2014- vs. Unknown Opponent
Cleverly’s cruiserweight debut is once again on the schedule.  This time for May 17 in Cardiff.
11) Isaac Chilemba (14-116)
Last Fight: 3/15/2014- UD10 Denis Grachev (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Chilemba looked very very sharp in dominating a game Denis Grachev, and might soon be in line for a shot at Adonis Stevenson.
12) Jürgen Brähmer (14-105)
Last Fight: 4/5/2014- RTD5 Enzo Maccarinelli (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Braehmer might give Maccarinelli a rematch in June.  I like it.
13) Karo Murat (13-26)
Last Fight: 10/26/2013- L (UD12) vs. #2 Bernard Hopkins
Next Fight: Unknown
Murat is a free agent after his contract with Sauerland recently expired.
14) Thomas Williams, Jr. (13-13)
Last Fight: 1/24/2014- TKO1 #13 Cornelius White
Next Fight: Unknown
Williams has been well-matched against vulnerable guys with good resumes.
15) Cedric Agnew (14-54)
Last Fight: 3/29/2014- L (KO7) vs. #4 Sergey Kovalev
Next Fight: Unknown
After taking a risk against Kovalev and coming up short, I can only assume that his prospects for a regional title bout against Dudchenko and a IBF eliminator against Sukhotsky might both be out the window at least for the moment.
16) Edwin Rodriguez (14-41)
Last Fight: 11/16/2013- L (UD12) vs. Champ Andre Ward
Next Fight: Unknown
Rodriguez was scheduled to fight Marcus Johnson on May 24, but Johnson quickly withdrew.
17) Hadillah Mohoumadi (26-43)
Last Fight: 11/30/2013- TKO5 Bartlomiej Grafka (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
18) Cornelius White (13-123)
Last Fight: 1/24/2014- L (TKO1) vs. Thomas Williams, Jr. (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Never blessed with big-time promotional or managerial ties, White has risked becoming a permanent opponent with his last two losses.
19) Eleider Alvarez (13-65)
Last Fight: 1/18/2014- UD10 Andy Gardiner (UNR)
Next Fight: 5/24/2014- vs. Radivoje Kalajdzic (UNR)
Alvarez will fight a physically talented and undefeated prospect in Kalajdzic on the Stevenson-Fonfara undercard, but a prospect who is still a little rough around the edges.
20) Lucian Bute (13-77)
Last Fight: 1/18/2014- L (UD12) vs. Jean Pascal (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Bute wants his contractually-guaranteed rematch with Pascal, a fight that appears tentatively planned for late in the year.  He recently parted ways with his long-time trainer.

 

The Week Ahead
Thursday
#14 Thomas Williams, Jr. vs. Enrique Ornelas; Rancho Mirage, California; FS1 (US)
Williams is a fast-rising Golden Boy prospect who has risen in the rankings due to both his talent and excellent matchmaking.  That is to say that he’s been matched with vulnerable guys like Cornelius White and Yusaf Mack who nevertheless have very solid- some would say inflated- resumes.  This is more of a showcase.  Ornelas- the brother of former top 5 super middleweight Librado Andrade- was once a fringe contender, but since at least 2008 he’s done one of two things exclusively: beat nobodies or lose to contenders, though it should be noted that he did give Bernard Hopkins unexpected trouble in late 2009.  With that all being the case, it’s possible that he’s the opposite of Williams’ typical recent opponent in that he might be more dangerous than his current status might indicate.  But that status is merely that of a mid-level journeyman at this point, so an Ornelas win would be a huge upset, indeed.

 

Rowland Bryant vs. Rayco Saunders; Bethlehem, Pennsylvania; Off TV
Speaking of Librado Andrade, the man known almost exclusively for effectively ending his career is also in action on Thursday.  He’s not getting a ton of love from the Boxrec rankings, and he is coming off losses in 2 of his 3 fights since the destruction of the Mexican contender- albeit against the likes of undefeated prospects/contenders like Thomas Oosthuizen and Yunieski Gonzalez.  There’s much less ambiguity about the proper status of Saunders, who comes in with only one more win than loss, and at 39 years old has been declared the loser in 8 of his last 9.

 

Saturday
Timy Shala vs. Emmanuel Feuzeu; Vienna, Austria; TV Unknown
Shala, who makes his home in Vienna by way of Kosovo, is an undefeated prospect, who is arguably a top 50 fighter based on his stoppage win over Mounir Toumi- a likely overrated journeyman who had made a minor name for himself by beating Tony Averlant right after Averlant was robbed versus Eddy Gutknecht.  Feuzeu is a veteran of just 11 fights, and a mid-level journeyman who comes off his best career win over Ricky Pow in October.  He does, however, have at least one unacceptable loss on his resume, a decision to a 1-2 fighter back in March 2008.  He’s not a challenge for a bona fide top 50 fighter, but I’m not sure we really know yet if Shala is among that company.

 

Pawel Glazewski vs. Maciej Miszkin; Legionowo, Poland; Polsat Sport (Poland)
Glazewski is hard to figure.  He clearly beat no less a name than Roy Jones, Jr. in a cruiserweight fight in which he was blatantly robbed, but then was stopped in his home country by a natural super middleweight in Hadillah Mohoumadi.  I figure he’s still got to be considered a top 50 guy despite that setback, and he’s in against a one-loss prospect in Miszkin, but a one-loss prospect coming off a TKO loss to an inexperienced 18-year old.

Light Heavyweight: 2014, Apr 14-20

Posted in Light Heavyweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on September 19, 2014 by danboxing
Berlin was the scene on Friday for a dominant display by one-loss Russian prospect Igor Mikhalkin, who won every round clearly, and in fairly punishing fashion for the most part, before a cut to his opponent stopped the fight.  That opponent, Algerian journeyman Mohamed Belkacem, was very flawed technically, and especially lacked defensive skill.  He also was too slow.  To sum up, he was outclassed and outgunned.  For his part, Mikhalkin looked strong, technically sound, and methodical.  His power looked pretty impressive, but he never really pushed the pace in an effort to get rid of his guy.  One note on the stoppage, which sent the fight to the cards: I never saw a head clash.  I can’t say for sure, but I personally thought the cut was from a punch and should have yielded a TKO.  But that’s just one guy’s opinion.  Either way, a nice little performance for a decent-looking up-and-comer.

 

Saturday was pretty busy, though none of the matchups will really set the world on fire.

 

This fight ended up being contested a few pounds over the limit, but I’ll discuss it here anyway.  Vyacheslav Uzelkoff threw his career away Saturday in Brovari, Ukraine by fighting like a total idiot against Serbian journeyman Geard Ajetovic.  The dude spent the first several rounds of the 8-rounder wasting as much energy as humanly possible while doing absolutely nothing that could have been remotely effective even under the most ideal of circumstances.  He bounced up and down like a jack-in-the-box constantly, even sometimes while in prime punching range for his opponent.  He constantly flicked out perhaps the most comically inconsequential jab I’ve ever seen, and really didn’t throw a punch that even remotely hinted that he was trying to win a round until the 6th.  If you don’t know Uzelkoff, he’s a big strong brutish kind of guy.  Picture a (very) poor man’s Sergey Kovalev.  Yet he was fighting as if he aspired to be a very poor man’s Miguel Vazquez.  It was literally insane.  The level of incompetence he and, I assume, his corner showed in terms of both gameplan and execution were frankly stunning from a guy with his extensive amateur and pro experience.  He fought with the skill and ring intelligence of a fighter making his amateur debut.  It was mind-boggling.  As for Ajetovic, he took what was given to him.  He fought only in spurts, but constantly came forward behind a high guard that Uzelkoff was content to tap at, rather than try to penetrate.  When he did let his hands go, though, it was extremely effective against Uzelkoff, who frequently backed straight up, and stood that way, as well.  I did give Uzelkoff the nod in a close 7th round, but the rest was all Ajetovic.  Shamefully, the verdict at the end of 8 was a close-looking split decision, as the judges were apparently trying to do to Ajetovic what the Russians are trying to do to Uzelkoff’s native Ukraine.  The best of the judges, Vadym Lavrenets, had it probably a round too close at 78-74.  Volodymyr Dyachuk’s 77-75 was pretty insane, though he at least had it for the right guy.  Oleg Kuderov, who on this evidence alone might be the worst active judge in the whole wide world, scored it 77-76 for the thoroughly dominated and embarrassed Uzelkoff.  Ajetovic’s dominant victory is nevertheless largely wasted for the time being, though.  He’s done nothing at the light heavyweight limit of any note, and considering Uzelkoff is a career 175 pounder and Ajetovic himself is pretty clearly a natural super middleweight, it simply makes no sense to treat this as a meaningful cruiserweight fight.  I will give this fight consideration, however, if Ajetovic adds a rateable win in an actual light heavyweight fight at some point.

 

Oleksandr Cherviak salvaged some sort of light heavyweight silver lining for the Ukrainian fans on the undercard, though, winning what was apparently, at least, a fairly clear decision over Artem Redko, a low-level fellow Ukranian whose only claim to viability in the fight going in was the fact that he had given Cherviak a close fight back in 2010.  That fight was also technically at cruiserweight, though in this case it didn’t really make a difference.

 

In the main event of the Sauerland Nordic Fight Night broadcast from Esbjerg, Denmark, Sweden’s Erik Skoglund successfully defended his European Union crown with a 9th-round stoppage of mostly game but totally outgunned Italian fringe prospect Danilo D’Agata.  Skoglund had won every round to that point by a wide margin, and finally put his man down in the 9th.  D’Agata got up, but had clearly had enough and turned to his corner while the referee completed the 8 count.  The stoppage couldn’t hid the startling incompetence of two of the judges, though.  Let me be clear…every round was clear.  Not kinda close.  Completely one-sided.  Yet judge Predrag Aleksic found a round for D’Agata, and Raiko Djajic found two, plus apparently another even.  After 8 rounds, he had Skoglund up by just 3 points, meaning D’Agata was still very much in the fight on his card.  Disgusting.

 

Last and perhaps least, on the non-televised Bradley-Pacquiao undercard, rugged undefeated prospect Sean Monaghan of New York scored a predictable 5th round TKO over low-level journeyman Irish Joey McCreedy of Lowell, Massachusetts.

 

Aside from Ajetovic, whose argument for rankings consideration is a non-started for reasons discussed above, none of the week’s winners were in deep enough to help their cases for rankings love.  That being the case, there are no changes this week.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (weeks in current position-weeks   in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: Andre Ward (84-84-84)
Last Fight: 11/16/2013- UD12 #15 Edwin Rodriguez (as SMW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Kovalev’s promoter has zeroed in on the inactive Ward as an “inevitable” future opponent.
1) Adonis Stevenson (45-45-45)
Last Fight: 11/30/2013- TKO6 #6 Tony Bellew
Next Fight: 5/24/2014- vs. #6 Andrzej Fonfara
In something of a coup, Stevenson-Fonfara will be carried by Showtime.   This not only further diminishes HBO’s stable of top fighters, but also puts in serious doubt the plausibility of what appeared to be an upcoming megafight with Kovalev.
2) Bernard Hopkins (84-410-410)
Last Fight: 10/26/2013- UD12 Karo Murat (UNR)
Next Fight: 4/19/2014- vs. Beibut Shumenov (UNR)
Hopkins will fight Shumenov in mid-April at the D.C. Armory in Washington.
3) Jean Pascal (13-13-13)
Last Fight: 1/18/2014- UD12 #16 Lucian Bute
Next Fight: Unknown
Bob Arum has floated the possibility of a July fight with Julio Cesar Chavez.  Once promoted exclusively by Yvon Michel, he’s recently added their fellow Canadian rival, Interbox, as a 50-50 co-promoter.
4) Sergey Kovalev (13-65-65)
Last Fight: 3/29/2014- KO7 #15 Cedric Agnew
Next Fight: Unknown
Kovalev had some choice words for Stevenson after the Haitian defected to Showtime and, apparently, scuttled their much-hyped matchup for later this year.  No news yet on what Kovalev’s next move will be after the development.
5) Chad Dawson (13-411-411)
Last Fight: 6/8/2013- L(TKO1) vs. SMW #6 Adonis Stevenson
Next Fight: Unknown
Dawson has signed a deal with manager Al Haymon, which certainly brightens his career prospects.  He says he is interested in a Stevenson rematch.  Prospects for another occasionally-discussed rematch- with Jean Pascal- increased recently with word that Pascal’s trainer offered Dawson a contract.
6) Andrzej Fonfara (13-35-92)
Last Fight: 12/6/2013- KO2 Samuel Miller (UNR)
Next Fight: 5/24/2014- vs. #1 Adonis Stevenson
See Stevenson’s notes, above.
7) Tony Bellew (13-131-131)
Last Fight: 3/15/2014- KO12 Valery Brudov (UNR) (at CW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Bellew is campaigning at cruiserweight now, but he’ll keep his ranking here until he schedules a fight there for after November 30, or until after November 30 itself.  BJ Flores wants to fight him, but it sounds like he’ll fight Cleverly before the year is out.
8) Gabriel Campillo (13-199-199)
Last Fight: 8/16/2013- L (KO9) vs. #14 Andrzej Fonfara
Next Fight: 5/9/2014- vs. Ricky Pow (UNR)
Campillo has replaced one low-level tune-up opponent with another, as Ibrahim Lopez is out and Ricky Pow is in for Campillo’s May 9 Madrid date.
9) Tavoris Cloud (13-242-242)
Last Fight: 9/28/2013- L (TKO7) vs. #1 Adonis Stevenson
Next Fight: Unknown
Cloud should probably get himself back in the win column at some point.
10) Nathan Cleverly (13-219-219)
Last Fight: 8/17/2013- L (TKO4) vs. #3 Sergey Kovalev
Next Fight: 5/17/2014- vs. Unknown Opponent
Cleverly’s cruiserweight debut is once again on the schedule.  This time for May 17 in Cardiff.
11) Isaac Chilemba (13-115)
Last Fight: 3/15/2014- UD10 Denis Grachev (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Chilemba looked very very sharp in dominating a game Denis Grachev, and might soon be in line for a shot at Adonis Stevenson.
12) Jürgen Brähmer (13-104)
Last Fight: 4/5/2014- RTD5 Enzo Maccarinelli (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Braehmer certainly didn’t look spectacular after inflicting a gruesome eye injury on Maccarinelli, and the closeness of the fight thereafter has emboldened the Welshman to demand a rematch- one I, for one, would be interested to see.
13) Karo Murat (12-25)
Last Fight: 10/26/2013- L (UD12) vs. #2 Bernard Hopkins
Next Fight: Unknown
Murat is a free agent after his contract with Sauerland recently expired.
14) Thomas Williams, Jr. (12-12)
Last Fight: 1/24/2014- TKO1 #13 Cornelius White
Next Fight: Unknown
Williams has been well-matched against vulnerable guys with good resumes.
15) Cedric Agnew (13-53)
Last Fight: 3/29/2014- L (KO7) vs. #4 Sergey Kovalev
Next Fight: Unknown
After taking a risk against Kovalev and coming up short, I can only assume that his prospects for a regional title bout against Dudchenko and a IBF eliminator against Sukhotsky might both be out the window at least for the moment.
16) Edwin Rodriguez (13-40)
Last Fight: 11/16/2013- L (UD12) vs. Champ Andre Ward
Next Fight: 5/24/2014- vs. Marcus Johnson (UNR)
Rodriguez will fight largely forgotten but still-viable prospect Marcus Johnson somewhere in the US on May 24.
17) Hadillah Mohoumadi (25-42)
Last Fight: 11/30/2013- TKO5 Bartlomiej Grafka (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
18) Cornelius White (12-122)
Last Fight: 1/24/2014- L (TKO1) vs. Thomas Williams, Jr. (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Never blessed with big-time promotional or managerial ties, White has risked becoming a permanent opponent with his last two losses.
19) Eleider Alvarez (12-64)
Last Fight: 1/18/2014- UD10 Andy Gardiner (UNR)
Next Fight: 5/24/2014- vs. Radivoje Kalajdzic (UNR)
Alvarez will fight a physically talented and undefeated prospect in Kalajdzic on the Stevenson-Fonfara undercard, but a prospect who is still a little rough around the edges.
20) Lucian Bute (12-76)
Last Fight: 1/18/2014- L (UD12) vs. Jean Pascal (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Bute wants his contractually-guaranteed rematch with Pascal.  He recently parted ways with his long-time trainer.

 

The Week Ahead
Saturday
Francis Cheka vs. Sajjad Mehrabi; Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania; TV Unknown
Did you know Iran had a fight scene?  I sure didn’t.  Mehrabi is a product of that entity, such as it is, and an undefeated prospect.  He settled for a 4-round draw in his 2nd fight against a fellow 1-0 fighter, and has won on points in all but one of his victories since, having never fought outside Tehran.  Only 3 of his 13 wins have come against fighters with as many as one career win, and only one came against a guy with as many as 2 (that being a 2-3 fighter).  So he wins decisions against terrible/inexperienced fighters.  Not sounding too good so far, though he does have yet to lose.  Cheka is a veteran local gatekeeper who hangs around right on the fringes of the top 50 for the most part.  He’s coming off a 3-round stoppage loss to undefeated Fedor Chudinov, and has been struggling with middling prospects at times of late.  That being said, Mehrabi is so unproven that it’s hard to project him into having much of a chance against a guy this experienced, especially on the road.

 

#2 Bernard Hopkins vs. Beibut Shumenov; Atlantic City, New Jersey; Showtime (US)
The silly machinations of the WBA have elevated the very inactive Beibut Shumenov- who won his title on one of the most heinous robberies of the modern era and has defended it largely against borderline top 50 opposition since then, at best- to the status of “Super Champion.”  That’s a farce on multiple levels.  The guy has generally looked alright since getting battered in his “title-winning” performance against Gabriel Campillo in early 2010, but for the most part he might as well have been fighter a slew of 10 year-old girls.  I mean seriously.  This guy’s title defenses make Zsolt Erdei’s resume look like Muhammad Ali’s by comparison.  Uzelkoff was his toughest, and he’s followed that up with William Joppy, Danny Santiago, Enrique Ornelas, and Tamas Kovacs.  Shumenov is not only not a real Champion, but he’s not really even that close to being in the top 20 at the moment.  The last time he so much as fought a top 50 fighter- and only very arguably so- was well over 3 years ago.  Unless the 49 year-old Hopkins begins showing his age at long last, he’ll probably outclass Shumenov, though the former scenario is always possible at Hopkins’ age, and against a young, strong, competent operator, all of which do, in all fairness, describe the Kazakh.

Super Middleweight: 2013, Dec 23-29

Posted in Rankings, Super Middleweight with tags , , , , , , , on March 23, 2014 by danboxing
Saturday in Moscow, undefeated prospect Fedor Chudinov got his biggest win to date by battering Tanzanian gatekeeper Francis Cheka into a post-3rd round retirement in his corner.  Cheka- who incidentally came in a full weight class heavier than Chudinov at nearly 175- came out in full windmill mode, throwing constant punches as wildly as you can imagine.  It took only about a half-round for Chudinov’s more disciplined pressure style to get Cheka under control, though, and he proceeded to land at will from that point, and piled up sufficient punishment in three completed rounds that you can hardly fault Cheka for calling it a night at that point.  With the win, Chudinov goes from a prospect prepared to test himself against gatekeepers to one apparently ready to wade into the waters occupied by fringe contenders, though he still falls shy of a ranking.

 

No changes this week.

 

Dan’s Top 20
Champ: Andre Ward (106-240-240)
Last Fight: 11/16/2013- UD12 #13 Edwin Rodriguez
Next Fight: Unknown
Ward says he would fight Golovkin or Hopkins, but seems to doubt that either of them wants to fight him.  In the meantime, he has maybe another fight to deal with that could do more damage to his career than any he has yet met in the ring- a lawsuit against his promoter.  He hopes to be back in March or April, though.
1) Carl Froch (83-393-393)
Last Fight: 11/23/2013- TKO9 #8 George Groves
Next Fight: Unknown
After a grueling fight that showed Froch returning to his pre-Super 6 ways by pulling one out of the fire late, Froch has a very credible and vehement rematch challenge in his lap, courtesy of George Groves.  Rumor has it that he intends to refuse, and has also resisted suggestions that he move up to 175 to fight Stevenson.  His current focus seems to be on trying to make a Ward rematch.
2) Robert Stieglitz (40-226-226)
Last Fight: 10/19/2013- UD12 Isaac Ekpo (UNR)
Next Fight: 3/1/2014- vs. #4 Arthur Abraham
The Abraham-Stieglitz trilogy bout, originally announced for February 1, is now official for March 1, in Stieglitz’s home base of Magdeburg.
3) Mikkel Kessler (54-472-472)
Last Fight: 5/25/2013- L (UD12) vs. #1 Carl Froch
Next Fight: Unknown
After meeting with Kessler, his promoter says he won’t be fighting anytime soon, and Kessler hinted at possible retirement immediately after the Froch fight.  It’s not looking good for Kessler fans, though the Viking Warrior recently said, rather vaguely, that he still wants a big fight.
4) Arthur Abraham (32-218-218)
Last Fight: 10/26/2013- UD12 Giovanni De Carolis (UNR)
Next Fight: 3/1/2014- vs. #2 Robert Stieglitz
See Stieglitz’s notes, above.
5) Brandon Gonzales (26-26-26)
Last Fight: 11/16/2013- UD10 Jonathan Nelson (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Gonzales was placed in the position of fighting Vlasov in an alphabet eliminator, but it’s unclear at present if that fight is still on the table or not.
6) Thomas Oosthuizen (13-134-182)
Last Fight: 11/9/2013- W* (MD12) vs. #13 Ezequiel Maderna
Next Fight: 1/18/2014- vs. LHW #18 Eleider Alvarez (at LHW)
Oosthuizen-Alvarez looks like it’s staying on the Bute-Pascal card despite a few roadblocks.
7) Ezequiel Maderna (7-7-52)
Last Fight: 11/9/2013- L* (MD12) vs. #6 Thomas Oosthuizen
Next Fight: Unknown
I doubt he’ll get much love from the alphabets for his effort, but I think you could make a better case for him winning than losing against Oosthuizen, though I had it a draw personally.
8) George Groves (7-54-76)
Last Fight: 11/23/2013- L (TKO9) vs. #1 Carl Froch
Next Fight: Unknown
While I think the result of a TKO loss was an inevitable one, I also don’t fault Groves for the ultimatum he recently issued to Froch: rematch or retire.  Obviously he can’t make Froch do that, but I think he earned the rematch, and I think there’s a lot of money in it for both guys.  He’s having to resort to personal attacks to try and get a reluctant Froch to agree, however.
9) James DeGale (6-29-115)
Last Fight: 11/16/2013- UD12 Dyah Davis (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Negotiations are underway for an eliminator between DeGale and Periban for a shot at Bika.
10) Christopher Rebrasse (6-6-29)
Last Fight: 12/6/2013- UD6 George Kandelaki (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Rebrasse was apparently involved in a December 6 fight that was so under the radar that I missed it until two weeks after it happened.
11) Sakio Bika (6-351)
Last Fight: 12/7/2013- Draw (SD12) vs. Anthony Dirrell (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Dirrell wants a rematch, and that’s obviously a worthy endeavor given the legitimate draw the first time around.  In the meantime, machinations are underway for an eliminator between Periban and DeGale, with the winner to become his mandatory.
12) Maxim Vlasov (7-59)
Last Fight: 12/5/2013- KO4 Maxell Taylor (UNR) (at LHW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Vlasov appears set for an IBF eliminator, and Brandon Gonzales and Ndiaye appear to be the possibilities to oppose him.
13) Edwin Rodriguez (7-49)
Last Fight: 11/16/2013- L (UD12) vs. Champ Andre Ward
Next Fight: Unknown
According to his trainer Ronnie Shields, they might be looking to fight a top-15 level light heavyweight, and have absolutely no intention to ever try to make 168 again.
 14) Andy Lee (13-32)
Last Fight: 11/23/2013-TKO2 Ferenc Hafner (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Lee seems to be focused on a Macklin clash for the Spring.
15) Ryota Murata (13-18)
Last Fight: 12/6/2013- TKO8 Dave Peterson (UNR)
Next Fight: 2/22/2014- vs. Unknown Opponent
Murata is slated for a February 22 card in Macau.
16) Caleb Truax (13-27)
Last Fight: 9/21/2013- TKO4 Ceresso Fort (UNR) (at MW)
Next Fight: 1/3/2014- vs. Ossie Duran (UNR)
Ossie Duran has replaced Derek Ennis as Truax’s January 3 opponent- a modest upgrade, actually.
17) Hadillah Mohoumadi (13-43)
Last Fight: 11/30/2013- TKO5 Bartlomiej Grafka (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
 18) Badou Jack (3-23)
Last Fight: 12/6/2013- TKO6 Rogelio Medina (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Jack called out the winner of Bika vs. Dirrell after his win over Medina, but might want to restate, since the fight ended in a draw the following night.
19) Don Mouton (3-13)
Last Fight: 5/13/2013- L* (UD8) vs. #10 Anthony Dirrell
Next Fight: 2/1/2013- vs. Gilberto Ramirez (UNR)
Mouton-Ramirez has been rescheduled for February 1.
20) Anthony Dirrell (3-3)
Last Fight: 12/7/2013- Draw (SD12) vs. #11 Sakio Bika
Next Fight: Unknown
His hard-fought draw with Sakio Bika gained Dirrell a measure of redemption for what pretty clearly should have been a loss against Don Mouton, and has him back in the hot prospect category.  He’s called for a rematch (good idea) and a fight with Golovkin (bad idea).

 

The Week Ahead: Merry Christmas!

Super Middleweight: 2013, Dec 16-22

Posted in Rankings, Super Middleweight with tags , , , , , , , on March 6, 2014 by danboxing
Precocious undefeated prospect Jake Carr- already a player at 6-0, stopped fairly credible veteran journeyman Zac Awad in the 6th when Awad’s corner tossed the towel.  Carr was up on all cards in shutout fashion when the end came, and Awad had also been penalized a point for a low blow in the 5th.  

 

Saturday featured a completely incomprehensible result at a catch weight between 160 and 168.  #1 Middleweight Martin Murray was looking to stay busy at a contract weight of I guess 163.25 or 164, and was totally flat against veteran journeyman Sergey Khomitsky of Belarus.  This was one of those appalling situations in which the sole judge was the ref.  Judging requires too much concentration to entrust the sole responsibility to one guy whose primary job ought to be to enforce the rules and ensure fighter safety.  Of course the fight probably was not expected to go the distance, let alone be close, but that’s still no excuse.  Judge Robert Williams had it 77-75 for Murray.  That’s not an unreasonable score, but I do believe it was slanted toward Murray, whether by local bias or an inability to adequately concentrate due to his double duty.  I don’t fault him, but it was still a bad result.  I had it 77-75 for Khomitsky, and thought any score between that score the other way and a round wider in favor of Khomitsky would have been reasonable.

 

So what do you do when a mid-level journeyman arguably deserves a win over the #1 middleweight contender, halfway to 168?  That’s a tough one.  My first thought is this: it can’t get either guy ranked.  Why?  Well, since Khomitsky didn’t get the win and I can’t say that he was definitely robbed of it, ranking him would require that I rank the official winner Murray, as well.  What has Murray done to earn a ranking at 168?  Nothing.  He arguably beat a mid-level journeyman who has never really competed at the full 168 limit.  So it certainly gives Khomitsky something to build upon at this weight if he follows up with anything meaningful in the future, but it logically can’t get him ranked here now.

 

On the off-tv undercard of Maidana-Broner, Jermain Taylor got a 7th-round TKO over washed-up former 154 contender JC Candelo, who proved completely incapable of testing anyone in a virtual walkover in his last fight a little over a year ago against Fernando Guerrero.  This fight was at a 163 catchweight give or take, and had no importance at any weight, really.

 

Nothing that happened this week had any bearing on the rankings, which stay the same this week.

 

Dan’s Top 20
Champ: Andre Ward (105-239-239)
Last Fight: 11/16/2013- UD12 #13 Edwin Rodriguez
Next Fight: Unknown
Ward says he would fight Golovkin or Hopkins, but seems to doubt that either of them wants to fight him.  In the meantime, he has maybe another fight to deal with that could do more damage to his career than any he has yet met in the ring- a lawsuit against his promoter.  He hopes to be back in March or April, though.
1) Carl Froch (82-392-392)
Last Fight: 11/23/2013- TKO9 #8 George Groves
Next Fight: Unknown
After a grueling fight that showed Froch returning to his pre-Super 6 ways by pulling one out of the fire late, Froch has a very credible and vehement rematch challenge in his lap, courtesy of George Groves.  Rumor has it that he intends to refuse, and has also resisted suggestions that he move up to 175 to fight Stevenson.  His current focus seems to be on trying to make a Ward rematch.
2) Robert Stieglitz (39-225-225)
Last Fight: 10/19/2013- UD12 Isaac Ekpo (UNR)
Next Fight: 3/1/2014- vs. #4 Arthur Abraham
The Abraham-Stieglitz trilogy bout, originally announced for February 1, is now official for March 1, in Stieglitz’s home base of Magdeburg.
3) Mikkel Kessler (53-471-471)
Last Fight: 5/25/2013- L (UD12) vs. #1 Carl Froch
Next Fight: Unknown
After meeting with Kessler, his promoter says he won’t be fighting anytime soon, and Kessler hinted at possible retirement immediately after the Froch fight.  It’s not looking good for Kessler fans, though the Viking Warrior recently said, rather vaguely, that he still wants a big fight.
4) Arthur Abraham (31-217-217)
Last Fight: 10/26/2013- UD12 Giovanni De Carolis (UNR)
Next Fight: 3/1/2014- vs. #2 Robert Stieglitz
See Stieglitz’s notes, above.
5) Brandon Gonzales (25-25-25)
Last Fight: 11/16/2013- UD10 Jonathan Nelson (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Gonzales was placed in the position of fighting Vlasov in an alphabet eliminator, but it’s unclear at present if that fight is still on the table or not.
6) Thomas Oosthuizen (12-133-181)
Last Fight: 11/9/2013- W* (MD12) vs. #13 Ezequiel Maderna
Next Fight: 1/18/2014- vs. LHW #18 Eleider Alvarez (at LHW)
Oosthuizen-Alvarez looks like it’s staying on the Bute-Pascal card despite a few roadblocks.
7) Ezequiel Maderna (6-6-51)
Last Fight: 11/9/2013- L* (MD12) vs. #6 Thomas Oosthuizen
Next Fight: Unknown
I doubt he’ll get much love from the alphabets for his effort, but I think you could make a better case for him winning than losing against Oosthuizen, though I had it a draw personally.
8) George Groves (6-53-75)
Last Fight: 11/23/2013- L (TKO9) vs. #1 Carl Froch
Next Fight: Unknown
While I think the result of a TKO loss was an inevitable one, I also don’t fault Groves for the ultimatum he recently issued to Froch: rematch or retire.  Obviously he can’t make Froch do that, but I think he earned the rematch, and I think there’s a lot of money in it for both guys.  He’s having to resort to personal attacks to try and get a reluctant Froch to agree, however.
9) James DeGale (5-28-114)
Last Fight: 11/16/2013- UD12 Dyah Davis (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
DeGale is agitating for a title fight after beating Davis, and thinks Froch and Groves are ducking him.  Billy Joe Saunders appears to be credibly calling him out from below, though, as well, and that fight seems to have more promotional momentum at present.
10) Christopher Rebrasse (5-5-28)
Last Fight: 12/6/2013- UD6 George Kandelaki (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Rebrasse was apparently involved in a December 6 fight that was so under the radar that I missed it until two weeks after it happened.
11) Sakio Bika (5-350)
Last Fight: 12/7/2013- Draw (SD12) vs. Anthony Dirrell (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Dirrell wants a rematch, and that’s obviously a worthy endeavor given the legitimate draw the first time around.
12) Maxim Vlasov (6-58)
Last Fight: 12/5/2013- KO4 Maxell Taylor (UNR) (at LHW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Vlasov appears set for an IBF eliminator, and Brandon Gonzales and Ndiaye appear to be the possibilities to oppose him.
13) Edwin Rodriguez (6-48)
Last Fight: 11/16/2013- L (UD12) vs. Champ Andre Ward
Next Fight: Unknown
According to his trainer Ronnie Shields, they might be looking to fight a top-15 level light heavyweight, and have absolutely no intention to ever try to make 168 again.
 14) Andy Lee (12-31)
Last Fight: 11/23/2013-TKO2 Ferenc Hafner (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Lee seems to be focused on a Macklin clash for the Spring.
15) Ryota Murata (12-17)
Last Fight: 12/6/2013- TKO8 Dave Peterson (UNR)
Next Fight: 2/22/2014- vs. Unknown Opponent
Murata is slated for a February 22 card in Macau.
16) Caleb Truax (12-26)
Last Fight: 9/21/2013- TKO4 Ceresso Fort (UNR) (at MW)
Next Fight: 1/3/2014- vs. Ossie Duran (UNR)
Ossie Duran has replaced Derek Ennis as Truax’s January 3 opponent- a modest upgrade, actually.
17) Hadillah Mohoumadi (12-42)
Last Fight: 11/30/2013- TKO5 Bartlomiej Grafka (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
 18) Badou Jack (2-22)
Last Fight: 12/6/2013- TKO6 Rogelio Medina (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Jack called out the winner of Bika vs. Dirrell after his win over Medina, but might want to restate, since the fight ended in a draw the following night.
19) Don Mouton (2-12)
Last Fight: 5/13/2013- L* (UD8) vs. #10 Anthony Dirrell
Next Fight: 2/1/2013- vs. Gilberto Ramirez (UNR)
Mouton-Ramirez has been rescheduled for February 1.
20) Anthony Dirrell (2-2)
Last Fight: 12/7/2013- Draw (SD12) vs. #11 Sakio Bika
Next Fight: Unknown
His hard-fought draw with Sakio Bika gained Dirrell a measure of redemption for what pretty clearly should have been a loss against Don Mouton, and has him back in the hot prospect category.  He’s called for a rematch (good idea) and a fight with Golovkin (bad idea).

 

The Week Ahead:
Saturday
Francis Cheka vs. Fedor Chudinov; Moscow, Russia; Sport 2 (Hungary)
Cheka is an inconsistent Tanzanian gatekeeper.  He’s handled all of the low-mid level competition he’s met since his 2008 loss to a young Matthew Macklin, with one random exception.  He was stopped in 7 by mediocre prospect Uensal Arik early this year.  As for Chudinov, he’s a 26 year-old undefeated prospect at 8-0, and he is proven at a level just below Cheka, having recently shut out very serviceable journeyman Jimmy Colas in November.  He’s also the younger brother of undefeated middleweight fringe contender Dmitry Chudinov.  This fight is on the Roy Jones undercard in Moscow.

Super Middleweight: 2013, Sep 2-8

Posted in Rankings, Super Middleweight with tags , , , , , , , on September 9, 2013 by danboxing
Friday in Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania, local favorite Francis Cheka won an average decision over Minneapolis gatekeeper Phil Williams.  No video can be found at present, but I did read one account that said Cheka dropped Williams and won comfortably, which supports the scorecards of 116-113, 117-111, and 119-109.

 

The same night in Homebush, Australia, 2-loss Kiwi prospect Junior Talipeau won a decision over low-level Argentine journeyman Walter Crucce.  It seems like it may not have been as easy as you might think.  Two judges had it 115-110 despite Crucce giving away two points to fouls.  The other judge had it 120-106.

 

Cheka might be approaching a ranking had he not lost earlier this year to a pretty low-level prospect.  As it is, no changes.

 

Dan’s Top 20
Champ: Andre Ward (90-224-224)
Last Fight: 9/8/2012- TKO10 LHW Champ Chad Dawson
Next Fight: 11/16/2013- vs. Unknown Opponent
Ward was looking for a comeback fight on September 28 against Caleb Truax, Dimitri Sartison, or Stas Kashtanov.  HBO rejected all three, and Edwin Rodriguez wanted more time to prepare.  The comeback has now been tentatively moved to November 16, but Ward is still looking for an HBO-friendly opponent after Rodriguez priced himself out with outlandish financial demands.
1) Carl Froch (67-377-377)
Last Fight: 5/25/2013- UD12 #3 Mikkel Kessler
Next Fight: 11/23/2013- vs. #8 George Groves
Froch-Groves is set for November 23 in Manchester.
2) Robert Stieglitz (24-210-210)
Last Fight: 7/13/2013- TKO10 Yuzo Kiyota (UNR)
Next Fight: 10/19/2013- vs. Isaac Ekpo (UNR)
Stieglitz and Abraham seem to be competing on who can fight the more mediocre opponents before rematching.  Ekpo is the worst yet- a low-level Nigerian prospect.
3) Mikkel Kessler (38-456-456)
Last Fight: 5/25/2013- L (UD12) vs. #1 Carl Froch
Next Fight: Unknown
Froch is interested in a trilogy on neutral ground, perhaps even more so than a Ward rematch.  But it’s not even clear that Kessler will fight again, after saying pre-fight he might retire.
4) Arthur Abraham (16-202-202)
Last Fight: 8/24/2013- UD12 Wilbeforce Shihepo (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Abraham is hoping his weak effort against non-entity Shihepo will earn him a mandatory spot for a trilogy with Stieglitz.
5) Brandon Gonzales (10-10-10)
Last Fight: 6/29/2013- D* vs. #5 Thomas Oosthuizen
Next Fight: Unknown
Gonzales at least earned a draw with Oosthuizen despite fading late.  I had it a win, and I give him credit for that.
6) Adonis Stevenson (16-91-91)
Last Fight: 6/8/2013- TKO1 LHW#1 Chad Dawson (at LHW)
Next Fight: 9/28/2013- vs. #7 LHW Tavoris Cloud (at LHW)
Stevenson looks like he’ll be fighting Cloud in Montreal in late September.  After that, he’ll probably get Tony Bellew before the end of the year when he wins.  He’ll probably be removed here in October, since he hasn’t fought at 168 in nearly a year.
7) Thomas Oosthuizen (10-118-166)
Last Fight: 6/29/2013- D* vs. Brandon Gonzales (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Oosthuizen laid a complete, fully-formed goose egg in the first half of his fight with deserved underdog Brandon Gonzales, and was extremely lucky to escape with a draw.
8) George Groves (10-38-60)
Last Fight: 5/25/2013- TKO5 Noe Gonzalez (UNR)
Next Fight: 11/23/2013- vs. #1 Carl Froch
Groves and Froch will face off on November 23 in Manchester.
9) Sakio Bika (10-29-335)
Last Fight: 6/22/2013- MD12 Marco Antonio Periban (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Bika seems to consider an Andre Ward rematch his top priority.  The two fought a very close fight the first time around.  He’s also been called out by Chavez, Rodriguez, Badou Jack, and Anthony Dirrell recently.  A guy gets a meaningless alphabet belt, and all of a sudden he goes from one of the most avoided fighters in the sport to a guy everyone wants to fight.
10) James DeGale (10-13-99)
Last Fight: 6/8/2013- RTD4 Stjepan Bozic (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
DeGale badly wants a big-money fight with Froch.
11) Christopher Rebrasse (10-13)
Last Fight: 6/8/2013- Robbery Draw (W) vs. #10 Mouhamed Ali Ndiaye
Next Fight: 10/26/2013- vs. Mouhamed Ali Ndiaye (UNR)
Rebrasse should have no reason to rematch Ndiaye, having beaten him decisively in June, but the judges completely corrupt ripoff has somehow conspired to make Rebrasse waste time and take a risk to confirm a very clear result.
12) Maxim Vlasov (9-43)
Last Fight: 7/12/2013- UD8 Mark Suarez (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
13) Edwin Rodriguez (9-33)
Last Fight: 7/13/2013- TKO1 #16 LHW Denis Grachev (at LHW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Rodriguez named Bika as someone he’d like to fight next.  Both are talented fighters who care little about technique as they wing wild punches.  Could be fun if it happens.  Turns out he had two different shots at Andre Ward since the Grachev fight.  He turned down one and priced himself out of the other.
14) Ezequiel Maderna (9-36)
Last Fight: 3/30/2013- L* (UD10) vs. #17 Edwin Rodriguez
Next Fight: Unknown
Maderna, despite arguably deserving a win against Rodriguez, did himself few favors in dropping the decision, especially considering how ugly the fight was.  I don’t imagine he’ll be getting too many international suitors anytime soon since he seems difficult to look good against.
15) Andy Lee (9-16)
Last Fight: 5/15/2013- TKO1 Darryl Cunningham (UNR)
Next Fight: 9/28/2013- vs. Domenico Spada (UNR) (at MW)
Lee will be in a rare title fight for him, and will thus most likely make the 160 pound limit for his Haye-Fury undercard fight with Domenico Spada- a rarity for him.
16) Ryoto Murata (2-2)
Last Fight: 8/25/2013- TKO2 #14 MW Akio Shibata
Next Fight: Unknown
Murata joins Lee and Truax as Middleweights who can claim a ranking in this very shallow division by beating an opponent a few pounds or less over 160.  But he comes with a twist…he’s done so in his very first fight.
17) Caleb Truax (2-11)
Last Fight: 6/21/2013- KO6 #15 Don George
Next Fight: 9/21/2013- vs. Ceresso Fort (UNR) (at MW?)
Truax will see action in Minneapolis on September 21 against fellow Minnesota prospect Ceresso Fort.
18) Hadillah Mohoumadi (2-27)
Last Fight: 6/29/2013- TKO7 #20 CW Pawel Glazewski (at LHW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Mohoumadi cancelled his long-scheduled fight with Giovanni De Carolis in favor of an opportunity with Pawel Glazewki at light heavyweight, it would appear.
19) Glen Johnson (2-18)
Last Fight: 4/19/2013- TKO2 Junior Ramos (UNR) (at CW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Looks like Johnson’s scheduled fight with Isiah Thomas, which would have been on Friday Night Fights, was canceled.  I don’t know why.
20) Badou Jack (2-7)
Last Fight: 7/19/2013- UD10 Farah Ennis (UNR)
Next Fight: 9/12/13- vs. Marco Antonio Periban (UNR)
No soft touches for Jack.  He will get prospect Marco Antonio Periban- who gave Sakio Bika all he could handle- on the newly rebranded Fox Sports 2 (formerly Fuel TV) a couple days before Mayweather-Canelo.

 

The Week Ahead: Two fights worth mentioning, both on Saturday:

 

In Saarbrucken, Germany, South African gatekeeper William Gare looks to test German Juergen Doberstein, who has not lost since a 6-round decision nearly 5 years ago.

 

Later that night in Fort Washington, Maryland, one-loss Brooklyn fringe prospect Phillip Jackson Benson takes on Virginia journeyman Scott Sigmon- who is best known as a former stay-busy Kelly Pavlik opponent.  Look out for this one.  Though he’s probably top 50 in a very sad division, Benson has a loss in his career against a winless fighter.

Super Middleweight: 2013, Aug 26- Sep 1

Posted in Rankings, Super Middleweight with tags , , , , , , , on August 30, 2013 by danboxing
#4 Arthur Abraham showed the surest sign yet of his decline Saturday in Schwerin, barely squeaking by against Namibian journeyman Wilbeforce Shihepo.  I had the fight for Abraham 115-113 (or 114-113, if you count the very clear knockdown that was ridiculously called a slip by the Luis Pabon clone of a referee).  With a good ref, I think fair scores could have ranged between 116-111 either way.  Of course Mickey Vann couldn’t be bothered to score it in that range, as he had it 117-111.  He also had a ridiculous score in Thompson-Pulev on the undercard.  He’s quickly laying claim to being one of the worst judges in the world.

 

Dimitri Sartison, who would be ranked here if he had made 168 recently, once again fought a couple pounds over the limit, knocking out journeyman Baker Barakat in 2 from Gladbach, Germany the same night.

 

Aging and overrated one-loss Montenegrin prospect Nikola Sjekloca threw in his own 2nd-round knockout the same night, taking care of low-level Serbian journeyman Misa Nikolic in Budva.

 

Finally, in Donetsk, Ukraine fringe contending should-be undefeated prospect Stas Kashtanov needed 10 rounds to dispose of lower-mid-level Costa Rican journeyman Jaime Barboza, dropping him twice in the process.

 

While subjectively I think Abraham has shown himself to be closer to #15 than #4 by the quality of at least his last two performances, he still has objectively a better resume than #5 Brandon Gonzales, and I deal with subjectivity only on the margins.  No changes this week.

 

This is an edit, as I originally thought this was merely a middleweight fight (I discuss the fight in more detail in that update), but Olympic Gold Medalist Ryoto Murata knocked out #14 Junior Middleweight Akio Shibata in his pro debut.  He’s not eligible to be ranked at 160 since the fight was contested at 161.  It’s kinda sad that a large and growing percentage of the contenders in this very shallow division are really just middleweights that didn’t make weight, but Murata joins those ranks.  He checks in between fellow middleweights Andy Lee and Caleb Truax at #16.  This forces Truax and everyone ranked below him down a spot, and bounces #20 Dom Mouton from the rankings after 14 weeks.

 

Dan’s Top 20
Champ: Andre Ward (89-223-223)
Last Fight: 9/8/2012- TKO10 LHW Champ Chad Dawson
Next Fight: Unknown
Ward has fights on the table with Stevenson and Froch.  He is trying to separate himself from promoter Dan Goossen, though, which might complicate matters.  Goossen has also said Ward wouldn’t take the Froch fight immediately, since he has been laid up with injury for the better part of a year.
1) Carl Froch (66-376-376)
Last Fight: 5/25/2013- UD12 #3 Mikkel Kessler
Next Fight: 11/23/2013- vs. #8 George Groves
Froch-Groves is set for November 23 in Manchester.
2) Robert Stieglitz (23-209-209)
Last Fight: 7/13/2013- TKO10 Yuzo Kiyota (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Arthur Abraham badly wants a trilogy.
3) Mikkel Kessler (37-455-455)
Last Fight: 5/25/2013- L (UD12) vs. #1 Carl Froch
Next Fight: Unknown
Froch is interested in a trilogy on neutral ground, perhaps even more so than a Ward rematch.  But it’s not even clear that Kessler will fight again, after saying pre-fight he might retire.
4) Arthur Abraham (15-201-201)
Last Fight: 8/24/2013- UD12 Wilbeforce Shihepo (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Abraham is hoping his weak effort against non-entity Shihepo will earn him a mandatory spot for a trilogy with Stieglitz.
5) Brandon Gonzales (9-9-9)
Last Fight: 6/29/2013- D* vs. #5 Thomas Oosthuizen
Next Fight: Unknown
Gonzales at least earned a draw with Oosthuizen despite fading late.  I had it a win, and I give him credit for that.
6) Adonis Stevenson (15-90-90)
Last Fight: 6/8/2013- TKO1 LHW#1 Chad Dawson (at LHW)
Next Fight: 9/28/2013- vs. #7 LHW Tavoris Cloud (at LHW)
Stevenson looks like he’ll be fighting Cloud in Montreal in late September.  After that, he’ll probably get Tony Bellew before the end of the year when he wins.  He’ll probably be removed here in October, since he hasn’t fought at 168 in nearly a year.
7) Thomas Oosthuizen (9-117-165)
Last Fight: 6/29/2013- D* vs. Brandon Gonzales (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Oosthuizen laid a complete, fully-formed goose egg in the first half of his fight with deserved underdog Brandon Gonzales, and was extremely lucky to escape with a draw.
8) George Groves (9-37-59)
Last Fight: 5/25/2013- TKO5 Noe Gonzalez (UNR)
Next Fight: 11/23/2013- vs. #1 Carl Froch
Groves and Froch will face off on November 23 in Manchester.
9) Sakio Bika (9-28-334)
Last Fight: 6/22/2013- MD12 Marco Antonio Periban (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Bika seems to consider an Andre Ward rematch his top priority.  The two fought a very close fight the first time around.  He’s also been called out by Chavez, Rodriguez, Badou Jack, and Anthony Dirrell recently.  A guy gets a meaningless alphabet belt, and all of a sudden he goes from one of the most avoided fighters in the sport to a guy everyone wants to fight.
10) James DeGale (9-12-98)
Last Fight: 6/8/2013- RTD4 Stjepan Bozic (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
DeGale badly wants a big-money fight with Froch.
11) Christopher Rebrasse (9-12)
Last Fight: 6/8/2013- Robbery Draw (W) vs. #10 Mouhamed Ali Ndiaye
Next Fight: 10/26/2013- vs. Mouhamed Ali Ndiaye (UNR)
Rebrasse should have no reason to rematch Ndiaye, having beaten him decisively in June, but the judges completely corrupt ripoff has somehow conspired to make Rebrasse waste time and take a risk to confirm a very clear result.
12) Maxim Vlasov (8-42)
Last Fight: 7/12/2013- UD8 Mark Suarez (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
13) Edwin Rodriguez (8-32)
Last Fight: 7/13/2013- TKO1 #16 LHW Denis Grachev (at LHW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Rodriguez named Bika as someone he’d like to fight next.  Both are talented fighters who care little about technique as they wing wild punches.  Could be fun if it happens.
14) Ezequiel Maderna (8-35)
Last Fight: 3/30/2013- L* (UD10) vs. #17 Edwin Rodriguez
Next Fight: Unknown
Maderna, despite arguably deserving a win against Rodriguez, did himself few favors in dropping the decision, especially considering how ugly the fight was.  I don’t imagine he’ll be getting too many international suitors anytime soon since he seems difficult to look good against.
15) Andy Lee (8-15)
Last Fight: 5/15/2013- TKO1 Darryl Cunningham (UNR)
Next Fight: 9/28/2013- vs. Domenico Spada (UNR) (at MW)
Lee will be in a rare title fight for him, and will thus most likely make the 160 pound limit for his Haye-Fury undercard fight with Domenico Spada- a rarity for him.
16) Ryoto Murata (1-1)
Last Fight: 8/25/2013- TKO2 #14 MW Akio Shibata
Next Fight: Unknown
Murata joins Lee and Truax as Middleweights who can claim a ranking in this very shallow division by beating an opponent a few pounds or less over 160.  But he comes with a twist…he’s done so in his very first fight.
17) Caleb Truax (1-10)
Last Fight: 6/21/2013- KO6 #15 Don George
Next Fight: 9/21/2013- vs. Ceresso Fort (UNR) (at MW?)
Truax will see action in Minneapolis on September 21 against fellow Minnesota prospect Ceresso Fort.
18) Hadillah Mohoumadi (1-26)
Last Fight: 6/29/2013- TKO7 #20 CW Pawel Glazewski (at LHW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Mohoumadi cancelled his long-scheduled fight with Giovanni De Carolis in favor of an opportunity with Pawel Glazewki at light heavyweight, it would appear.
19) Glen Johnson (1-17)
Last Fight: 4/19/2013- TKO2 Junior Ramos (UNR) (at CW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Looks like Johnson’s scheduled fight with Isiah Thomas, which would have been on Friday Night Fights, was canceled.  I don’t know why.
20) Badou Jack (1-6)
Last Fight: 7/19/2013- UD10 Farah Ennis (UNR)
Next Fight: 9/12/13- vs. Marco Antonio Periban (UNR)
No soft touches for Jack.  He will get prospect Marco Antonio Periban- who gave Sakio Bika all he could handle- on the newly rebranded Fox Sports 2 (formerly Fuel TV) a couple days before Mayweather-Canelo.

 

The Week Ahead: Two notables will be in action on Friday. 

 

In Homebush, Australia, 2-loss Kiwi prospect Junior Talipeau gets what should be an easy assignment against low-level Argentine journeyman Walter Crucce.

 

Gatekeeper Francis Cheka gets a rare test in his native Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania against Minneapolis gatekeeper Phil Williams, who owns draws with Derrick Findley and Caleb Truax.

Super Middleweight: 2012, Nov 19-25

Posted in Rankings, Super Middleweight with tags , , , , , , , on November 20, 2012 by danboxing
#1 Carl Froch had a ridiculously easy time with #11 Yusaf Mack in Nottingham on Saturday.  It’s no shame to lose to a top fighter like Froch, but Mack looked so bad in doing so that it makes one wonder if he might be done.  There are some really bad performances in the recent history of boxing that can be attributed to excessive weight draining, and I can only hope for Mack’s sake that his problem was something of that nature.  His reaction to the Froch punch that produced the first knockdown was so slow that he almost looked like he wanted to get hit by it.

 

Froch obviously stays at #1.  Though Mack is now technically an active Super Middleweight, he hasn’t beaten anybody at this weight in over 5 years and thus isn’t considered for a ranking.  No changes.

 

Dan’s Top 20
Champ: Andre Ward (49-183-183)
Last Fight: 9/8/2012- TKO10 LHW Champ Chad Dawson
Next Fight: 1/26/2012- vs. #8 Kelly Pavlik
Ward will be fighting Pavlik in LA on January 26.
1) Carl Froch (26-336-336)
Last Fight: 11/17/2012- KO3 LHW #11 Yusaf Mack
Next Fight: Unknown Date- vs. #4 Lucian Bute
Froch destroyed a passive and weak-looking Mack and is now probably all set for his March or April rematch with Bute.
2) Arthur Abraham (13-161-161)
Last Fight: 8/25/2012- UD12 #4 Robert Stieglitz
Next Fight: 12/15/2012- vs. Mehdi Bouadla (UNR)
Abraham will make a fairly weak follow-up to his big win over Stieglitz.  His opponent is Mehdi Bouadla, who made a brave stand against Kessler before getting stopped fairly early in their 2011 fight.  Since then, Bouadla- essentially a journeyman- has been fighting exclusively nobodies, mostly at middleweight.
3) Mikkel Kessler (13-415-415)
Last Fight: 5/19/2012- KO5 Allan Green (UNR)
Next Fight: 12/8/2012- vs. Brian Magee (UNR)
Kessler fights fringe contender Brian Magee in Herning, Denmark on December 8.
4) Lucian Bute (13-345-345)
Last Fight: 11/3/2012- UD12 LHW #16 Denis Grachev (at LHW)
Next Fight: Unknown Date- vs. #1 Carl Froch
Bute struggled a fair amount in his win over Grachev, and now presumably will have to deal with Froch for a second time.
5) Robert Stieglitz (13-169-169)
Last Fight: 8/25/2012- L(UD12) vs. #6 Arthur Abraham
Next Fight: Unknown
Stieglitz was somewhat busted up in the tough Abraham fight, and so I expect him to take a few months off at least.
6) Thomas Oosthuizen (13-77-125)
Last Fight: 11/10/2012- UD12 Fulgencio Zuniga (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Oosthuizen missed weight initially but managed to sweat it off to fight Zuniga.  He has reportedly been working on a potential deal to fight Gennady Golovkin since before that fight.
7) Adonis Stevenson (6-50-50)
Last Fight: 10/12/2012- TKO12 Don George (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Stevenson probably has a shot at Carl Froch due to him at some point, as he is the mandatory challenger for Froch’s belt.  But Froch already has a fight coming up soon with Yusaf Mack, and a contracted fight with Bute likely in March.
8) Kelly Pavlik (6-20-20)
Last Fight: 7/7/2012- UD10 #12 Will Rosinsky
Next Fight: 1/26/2013- vs. Champ Andre Ward
Pavlik will get a shot at Ward sooner than expected: January 26, in LA.
9) Sakio Bika (17-49-294)
Last Fight: 6/2/2012- TKO10 Dyah Davis (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
10) Karoly Balzsay (17-17-31)
Last Fight: 4/21/2012- TKO12 #8 Dimitri Sartison
Next Fight: Unknown
Balzsay pulled out of a scheduled alphabet title defense with fringe contender Brian Magee with a back injury.
11) Andy Lee (20-89)
Last Fight: 6/16/2012- L(TKO7) vs. MW#? Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr. (at MW)
Next Fight: Unknown
12) Anthony Dirrell (17-51)
Last Fight: 12/2/2011- TKO4 Renan St. Juste (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
After his motorcycle crash, Anthony Dirrell was said to be out until at least November.  Here we are in late November, and not a peep.  Hopefully he gets back in the ring before his woefully inactive twin brother.  As for his ranking, I will now commit to not remove him until at least June 2, 2013 due to his very serious injury situation.
13) Will Rosinsky (17-23)
Last Fight: 7/7/2012- L(UD10) vs. Kelly Pavlik (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
14) Mouhamed Ali Ndiaye (17-54)
Last Fight: 5/26/2012- RTD9 Jose Maria Guerrero (UNR)
Next Fight: 1/26/2013- vs. #18 James DeGale
Ndiaye’s fight with DeGale is set for late January instead of December 8 as reported earlier.  DeGale will be fighting a likely lesser opponent on December 8, it appears.
15) Dimitri Sartison (17-125)
Last Fight: 4/21/2012- L(TKO12) vs. Karoly Balzsay (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Sartison has been medically cleared following his third knee surgery, and is looking to return in December.
16) Jesus Gonzales (7-72)
Last Fight: 2/18/2012- L(KO1) vs. #9 Adonis Stevenson
Next Fight: 1/19/2012- vs. Albert Onolunose (UNR)
Gonzales’ fight at Desperado’s Nightclub in Calgary has been pushed back for a second time- this time to January 19.  But at least he has an opponent now- Nigerian journeyman Albert Onolunose, who is frankly a level or two better than I was expecting Gonzales to fight in such a small-sounding venue.
17) George Groves (6-19)
Last Fight: 7/28/2012- TKO6 Francisco Sierra (UNR)
Next Fight: 12/15/2012- vs. Glen Johnson (UNR)
Groves’s December 15 opponent turned out to be kind of a surprise: former light heavyweight champion Glen Johnson.  Johnson retired just a few months ago, but evidently isn’t ready to keep them hung up yet.  This could be an interesting crossroads fight.
18) James DeGale (6-58)
Last Fight: 10/13/2012- UD12* Hadillah Mohoumadi (UNR)
Next Fight: 12/8/2012- vs. Unknown Opponent
To clarify- DeGale will still apparently be back on December 8, and his fight with Mouhamed Ali Ndiaye is still on, but the December 8 fight will likely be mostly a stay-busy affair, while the important Ndiaye fight will take place on January 26.
19) Maxim Vlasov (2-2)
Last Fight: 11/5/2012- UD10 Khoren Gevor (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
20) Edwin Rodriguez (2-17)
Last Fight: 9/29/2012- TKO8 Jason Escalera (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
According to Gennady Golovkin’s trainer, Rodriguez turned down a huge offer to fight Golovkin.

 

The Week Ahead: Friday in Viterbo, Italy, local one-loss prospect Andrea Di Luisa meets Christopher Rebrasse of France in a well-matched battle of two guys needing a win to maintain their status as viable prospects.  Di Luisa was nearly ranked here before he was dominated by Mouhamed Ali Ndiaye last year.  Rebrasse has momentum in his favor, having defeated fellow prospect Hugo Kasperski in his last major fight, but is the visiting fighter and also has 3 very bad performances against unimpressive opposition on his record.  The winner will probably get a European title shot in the future, while the loser may become a confirmed journeyman.

 

Sunday in Muscat, Oman, borderline fringe contender Francis Cheka of Tanzania will strangely be fighting Amin Saad Alswayni, a local fighter making his pro debut according to Boxrec.  I can’t find any evidence that Alswayni is a decorated amateur or even some kind of kickboxing champion or something.  So I’m not sure why this fight is happening.

Super Middleweight: 2012, Oct 1-7

Posted in Rankings, Super Middleweight with tags , , , , , , , on October 3, 2012 by danboxing
In the main event of HBO’s broadcast on Saturday night, #20 Edwin Rodriguez cut through undefeated but untested Jason Escalera like butter for the most part.  The fight was very close to being stopped in the first round, but Escalera was able to survive and hang around in the fight- seldom with any success- until the 8th round, when Steve Smoger mercifully stopped the fight.  Escalera was not in the same league.

 

Top-50 fighter Francis Cheka fought journeyman Karama Nyilawila in a battle in Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania between two guys that were either born in or live in that city.  Cheka proved to be at a higher level as expected, chopping down Nyilawila in 6 for a TKO victory.

 

The fight between Venezuelan fringe contender Gusmyr Perdomo and Brazilian journeyman Luzimar Gonzaga that had been scheduled for Caracas on Saturday has been postponed until October 13.

 

No changes to the rankings.

 

Dan’s Top 20
Champ: Andre Ward (42-176-176)
Last Fight: 9/8/2012- TKO10 LHW Champ Chad Dawson
Next Fight: Unknown
Ward has floated Andre Dirrell and Kelly Pavlik as possible opponents.
1) Carl Froch (19-329-329)
Last Fight: 5/26/2012- TKO5 #1 Lucian Bute
Next Fight: 11/17/2012- vs. LHW #11 Yusaf Mack
After the negotiations initially appeared to have failed, Froch eventually secured a fight with Yusaf Mack, afterall.
2) Arthur Abraham (6-154-154)
Last Fight: 8/25/2012- UD12 #4 Robert Stieglitz
Next Fight: 12/15/2012- vs. Unknown Opponent
Abraham is a hot commodity in the division again.  He is already scheduled for a return on December 15, with Mikkel Kessler reportedly interested, and with the winner of Geale also being a possibility.
3) Mikkel Kessler (6-408-408)
Last Fight: 5/19/2012- KO5 Allan Green (UNR)
Next Fight: 12/8/2012- vs. Brian Magee (UNR)
Kessler fights fringe contender Brian Magee in Herning, Denmark on December 8.
4) Lucian Bute (6-338-338)
Last Fight: 5/26/2012- L(TKO5) vs. #2 Carl Froch
Next Fight: 11/3/2012- vs. LHW #15 Denis Grachev (at LHW)
Bute will exercise his rematch clause to fight Froch in March, but will be fighting an interim fight in November against otherwise mediocre but hard-hitting light heavyweight Denis Grachev.
5) Robert Stieglitz (6-162-162)
Last Fight: 8/25/2012- L(UD12) vs. #6 Arthur Abraham
Next Fight: Unknown
Stieglitz was somewhat busted up in the tough Abraham fight, and so I expect him to take a few months off at least.
6) Thomas Oosthuizen (6-70-118)
Last Fight: 8/2/2012- UD12 Rowland Bryant (UNR)
Next Fight: 11/10/2012- vs. Fulgencio Zuniga (UNR)
Oosthuizen will fight Colombia’s Fulgencio Zuniga in South Africa on November 10.
7) Kelly Pavlik (13-13-13)
Last Fight: 7/7/2012- UD10 #12 Will Rosinsky
Next Fight: Unknown
Pavlik at this point appears to be Ward’s most likely next opponent.
8) Adonis Stevenson (13-43-43)
Last Fight: 4/20/2012- TKO2 Noe Gonzalez (UNR)
Next Fight: 10/12/2012- vs. Don George (UNR)
Stevenson’s ill-fated fight with Don George has been rescheduled for October 12, in Montreal.
9) Sakio Bika (10-42-287)
Last Fight: 6/2/2012- TKO10 Dyah Davis (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Bika has been talking about a willingness to fight Froch, or even to move up and fight Danny Green as high as cruiserweight.
10) Karoly Balzsay (10-10-24)
Last Fight: 4/21/2012- TKO12 #8 Dimitri Sartison
Next Fight: Unknown
Balzsay pulled out of a scheduled alphabet title defense with fringe contender Brian Magee with a back injury.
11) Andy Lee (13-82)
Last Fight: 6/16/2012- L(TKO7) vs. MW#? Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr. (at MW)
Next Fight: Unknown
12) Anthony Dirrell (10-44)
Last Fight: 12/2/2011- TKO4 Renan St. Juste (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Dirrell had been all set for a somewhat goofy vacant title opportunity against the underwhelming Nikola Sjekloca, but Dirrell crashed his motorcycle, breaking an arm and leg.  He’s expected to be out of action until approximately November at the earliest.
13) Will Rosinsky (10-16)
Last Fight: 7/7/2012- L(UD10) vs. Kelly Pavlik (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
14) Mouhamed Ali Ndiaye (10-47)
Last Fight: 5/26/2012- RTD9 Jose Maria Guerrero (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
15) Dimitri Sartison (10-118)
Last Fight: 4/21/2012- L(TKO12) vs. Karoly Balzsay (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Sartison has been medically cleared following his third knee surgery, and is looking to return in December.
16) Bryan Vera (10-87)
Last Fight: 8/11/2012- W(MD12) vs. Sergio Mora (UNR) (at MW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Vera hasn’t been over 160 since he fought Andy Lee a year ago, and will be removed from the 168 rankings next week if he doesn’t schedule a fight in this division before next week’s update.
17) Jesus Gonzales (10-65)
Last Fight: 2/18/2012- L(KO1) vs. #9 Adonis Stevenson
Next Fight: Unknown
18) James DeGale (10-51)
Last Fight: 4/21/2012- TKO4 Cristian Sanavia (UNR)
Next Fight: 10/13/2012- vs. Hadillah Mohoumadi (UNR)
DeGale will have his first fight under promotion of Mick Hennessey when he takes on 2-loss French fringe prospect Hadillah Mohoumadi in England on October 13.
19) George Groves (10-12)
Last Fight: 7/28/2012- TKO6 Francisco Sierra (UNR)
Next Fight: 12/15/2012- vs. Unknown Opponent
Groves will be back in the ring on December 15, with opponent TBA.
20) Edwin Rodriguez (10-10)
Last Fight: 9/29/2012- TKO8 Jason Escalera (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Rodriguez is now fighting with Andre Ward………for a chance to fight Kelly Pavlik next.  Just keeping you on your toes.

 

The Week Ahead: Two-loss prospect Serge Yannick of Australia by way of Cameroon fights top-level Australian journeyman Nader Hamdan in the town of Ardeer on Friday.  The fight is being billed as being for the Australian title.  That’s fairly legitimate.  That is, if you consider Yannick Australian rather than Cameroonian (I don’t personally know his citizenship status or primary allegiance), and if you either still consider Sakio Bika Cameroonian, or remove him from the equation either for not fighting other Australians or for currently residing in the US. 

Super Middleweight: 2012, Sep 24-30

Posted in Rankings, Super Middleweight with tags , , , , , , , on October 1, 2012 by danboxing
No activity in the division last week.

 

Dan’s Top 20
Champ: Andre Ward (41-175-175)
Last Fight: 9/8/2012- TKO10 LHW Champ Chad Dawson
Next Fight: Unknown
Ward has floated Andre Dirrell and Kelly Pavlik as possible opponents.
1) Carl Froch (18-328-328)
Last Fight: 5/26/2012- TKO5 #1 Lucian Bute
Next Fight: 11/17/2012- vs. LHW #11 Yusaf Mack
After the negotiations initially appeared to have failed, Froch eventually secured a fight with Yusaf Mack, afterall.
2) Arthur Abraham (5-153-153)
Last Fight: 8/25/2012- UD12 #4 Robert Stieglitz
Next Fight: 12/15/2012- vs. Unknown Opponent
Abraham is a hot commodity in the division again.  He is already scheduled for a return on December 15, with Mikkel Kessler reportedly interested, and with the winner of Sturm-Geale also being a possibility.
3) Mikkel Kessler (5-407-407)
Last Fight: 5/19/2012- KO5 Allan Green (UNR)
Next Fight: 12/8/2012- vs. Brian Magee (UNR)
Kessler fights fringe contender Brian Magee in Herning, Denmark on December 8.
4) Lucian Bute (5-337-337)
Last Fight: 5/26/2012- L(TKO5) vs. #2 Carl Froch
Next Fight: 11/3/2012- vs. LHW #15 Denis Grachev (at LHW)
Bute will exercise his rematch clause to fight Froch in March, but will be fighting an interim fight in November against otherwise mediocre but hard-hitting light heavyweight Denis Grachev.
5) Robert Stieglitz (5-161-161)
Last Fight: 8/25/2012- L(UD12) vs. #6 Arthur Abraham
Next Fight: Unknown
Stieglitz was somewhat busted up in the tough Abraham fight, and so I expect him to take a few months off at least.
6) Thomas Oosthuizen (5-69-117)
Last Fight: 8/2/2012- UD12 Rowland Bryant (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Oosthuizen looked like the frontrunner to fight Froch in April, but didn’t like the offer he was given and turned down the shot.
7) Kelly Pavlik (12-12-12)
Last Fight: 7/7/2012- UD10 #12 Will Rosinsky
Next Fight: Unknown
8) Adonis Stevenson (12-42-42)
Last Fight: 4/20/2012- TKO2 Noe Gonzalez (UNR)
Next Fight: 10/12/2012- vs. Don George (UNR)
Stevenson’s ill-fated fight with Don George has been rescheduled for October 12, in Montreal.
9) Sakio Bika (9-41-286)
Last Fight: 6/2/2012- TKO10 Dyah Davis (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Bika has been talking about a willingness to fight Froch, or even to move up and fight Danny Green as high as cruiserweight.
10) Karoly Balzsay (9-9-23)
Last Fight: 4/21/2012- TKO12 #8 Dimitri Sartison
Next Fight: Unknown
Balzsay pulled out of a scheduled alphabet title defense with fringe contender Brian Magee with a back injury.
11) Andy Lee (12-81)
Last Fight: 6/16/2012- L(TKO7) vs. MW#? Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr. (at MW)
Next Fight: Unknown
12) Anthony Dirrell (9-43)
Last Fight: 12/2/2011- TKO4 Renan St. Juste (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Dirrell had been all set for a somewhat goofy vacant title opportunity against the underwhelming Nikola Sjekloca, but Dirrell crashed his motorcycle, breaking an arm and leg.  He’s expected to be out of action until approximately November at the earliest.
13) Will Rosinsky (9-15)
Last Fight: 7/7/2012- L(UD10) vs. Kelly Pavlik (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
14) Mouhamed Ali Ndiaye (9-46)
Last Fight: 5/26/2012- RTD9 Jose Maria Guerrero (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
15) Dimitri Sartison (9-117)
Last Fight: 4/21/2012- L(TKO12) vs. Karoly Balzsay (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Sartison has been medically cleared following his third knee surgery, and is looking to return in December.
16) Bryan Vera (9-86)
Last Fight: 8/11/2012- W(MD12) vs. Sergio Mora (UNR) (at MW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Vera took care of his rematch with Mora, but now only has until October to schedule a fight at 168 before he’s removed here.
17) Jesus Gonzales (9-64)
Last Fight: 2/18/2012- L(KO1) vs. #9 Adonis Stevenson
Next Fight: Unknown
18) James DeGale (9-50)
Last Fight: 4/21/2012- TKO4 Cristian Sanavia (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
19) George Groves (9-11)
Last Fight: 7/28/2012- TKO6 Francisco Sierra (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Groves was supposed to headline a fight on September 14 in London, but seemed to have had other ideas almost from the start, as the show will now go on without him.
20) Edwin Rodriguez (9-9)
Last Fight: 3/17/2012- UD10 Don George (UNR)
Next Fight: 9/29/2012- vs. Jason Escalera (UNR)
Rodriguez will headline a fairly ShoBoxy edition of HBO’s Boxing After Dark on September 29.

 

The Week Ahead: Three notable fighters see action this week in far-flung corners of the globe.  In Tanzania, local fighter Francis Cheka (roughly gatekeeper level, though the pattern of his career doesn’t fit that stereotype) battles his countryman, journeyman Karama Nyilawila.

 

In the Foxwoods in Mashantucket, Connecticut, #20 Edwin Rodriguez headlines HBO’s broadcast with a bout against undefeated but very untested power-punching prospect Jason Escalera.

 

Finally, in Caracas, Venezuela, local fringe contender Gusmyr Perdomo battles generic journeyman Luzimar Gonzaga of Brazil.

Super Middleweight: 2012, Jul 2-8

Posted in Rankings, Super Middleweight with tags , , , , , , , on July 22, 2012 by danboxing
No action to report from last week again.

 

Dan’s Top 20
Champ: Andre Ward (29-163-163)
Last Fight: 12/17/2011- UD12 #2 Carl Froch
Next Fight: 9/8/2012- vs. LHW Champ Chad Dawson
Ward and Dawson are now set to make history in September.  As far as I know, this may be the first time in history a reigning champion has challenged for a championship at a lower weight.  Since Dawson and Ward will be fighting at or below both the Super Middleweight and Light Heavyweight limits, both Championships will be on the line as far as I’m concerned.
1) Carl Froch (6-316-316)
Last Fight: 5/26/2012- TKO5 #1 Lucian Bute
Next Fight: Unknown
Froch is gunning for Kessler, but Kelly Pavlik has been agitating to fight Froch on his scheduled fall date, as well.
2) Mikkel Kessler (6-395-395)
Last Fight: 5/19/2012- KO5 Allan Green (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Kessler could fight Carl Froch in mid-October.
3) Lucian Bute (6-325-325)
Last Fight: 5/26/2012- L(TKO5) vs. #2 Carl Froch
Next Fight: Unknown
Bute appears uncertain as to whether he’ll exercise his right to a home-field rematch against Froch.  It sounds like he’ll fight someone else first, even if so.
4) Robert Stieglitz (29-149-149)
Last Fight: 5/5/2012- UD12 Nader Hamdan (UNR)
Next Fight: 8/25/2012- vs. #6 Arthur Abraham
Stieglitz vs. Abraham is official- August 25 in Berlin.
5) Thomas Oosthuizen (29-57-105)
Last Fight: 4/27/2012- UD10 Marcus Johnson (UNR)
Next Fight: 8/2/2012- vs. Rowland Bryant (UNR)
Oosthuizen will be fighting in New York against Rowland Bryant, the athletic fighter that put a beating on Librado Andrade in a big upset earlier this year.
6) Arthur Abraham (29-141-141)
Last Fight: 3/31/2012- UD12 Piotr Wilczewski (UNR)
Next Fight: 8/25/2012- vs. #4 Robert Stieglitz
See Stieglitz’s notes, above.
7) Adonis Stevenson (20-30-30)
Last Fight: 4/20/2012- TKO2 Noe Gonzalez (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
DeGale, Oosthuizen, Pavlik, Kessler, Bika, and Edwin Rodriguez have all turned down fights with Stevenson.  The fight has now been offered to Andre Dirrell.  Stevenson’s team appears pessimistic about that fight, and they are using Don George as a backup plan.
8) Peter Quillin (11-62-62)
Last Fight: 6/2/2012- UD10 Winky Wright (UNR) (at MW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Quillin appears likely to fight on September 8, perhaps against Marco Antonio Rubio.  If this fight is announced, Quillin will be removed since he has not fought over the 160 limit since last July.
9) Sakio Bika (11-29-274)
Last Fight: 6/2/2012- TKO10 Dyah Davis (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Bika just became the 6th known fighter to turn down a shot at Adonis Stevenson.
10) Andy Lee (11-11-69)
Last Fight: 6/16/2012- L(TKO7) vs. MW#? Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr. (at MW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Lee gets the fight he’s been waiting for, against the best opponent of his career in Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr.  The fight will be in El Paso in mid-June.
11) Karoly Balzsay (11-11)
Last Fight: 4/21/2012- TKO12 #8 Dimitri Sartison
Next Fight: Unknown
Balzsay had a 7/7 date tentatively set to fight Brian Magee, but he reportedly was still in relaxation mode after his last fight, and hadn’t resumed serious training.  The fight appears to be off for the moment.
12) Will Rosinsky (3-3)
Last Fight: 6/14/2012- UD8 #17 Aaron Pryor, Jr.
Next Fight: 7/7/2012- vs. Kelly Pavlik (UNR)
Rosinsky and Pavlik are both jumping into the ring after only a few weeks’ break when they do battle on HBO on July 7.
13) Anthony Dirrell (3-31)
Last Fight: 12/2/2011- TKO4 Renan St. Juste (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Dirrell had been all set for a somewhat goofy vacant title opportunity against the underwhelming Nikola Sjekloca, but Dirrell crashed his motorcycle, breaking an arm and leg.  He’s expected to be out of action until approximately November at the earliest.
14) Mouhamed Ali Ndiaye (3-34)
Last Fight: 5/26/2012- RTD9 Jose Maria Guerrero (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
There is word of negotiations for a potential fight with James DeGale.
15) Glen Johnson (3-87)
Last Fight: 11/5/2011- L(UD12) vs. #3 Lucian Bute
Next Fight: 7/13/2012- vs. Andrzej Fonfara (UNR) (at LHW)
Johnson will now be in a clear gatekeeper role for the first time since he knocked out Yusaf Mack in 2009 when he takes on Polish steroid user/prospect Andrzej Fonfara on Friday Night Fights on July 13- apparently at Light Heavyweight.
16) Dimitri Sartison (3-105)
Last Fight: 4/21/2012- L(TKO12) vs. Karoly Balzsay (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Sartison unfortunately underwent another knee surgery following his loss to Balzsay, and will be out until at least October.  It’s looking more and more likely that he’ll never be the same fighter.
17) Bryan Vera (3-74)
Last Fight: 4/21/2012- UD8 Taronze Washington (UNR) (at MW)
Next Fight: 8/11/2012- vs. Sergio Mora (UNR) (at MW)
Vera will give Sergio Mora a rematch of their competitive bout from early 2011.  Both of these guys are all over the map with their performances, so this could go either way.  The fight will be at 160.
18) Jesus Gonzales (29-52)
Last Fight: 2/18/2012- L(KO1) vs. #9 Adonis Stevenson
Next Fight: Unknown
19) James DeGale (29-38)
Last Fight: 4/21/2012- TKO4 Cristian Sanavia (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
May be up for a very good test against Mouhamed Ali Ndiaye next.
20) George Groves (29-29)
Last Fight: 11/5/2011- TKO2 Paul Smith (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
With his mandatory British title defense on hold until probably September due to a problem in securing a venue, it sounds as if Groves may fight in the interim, possibly in the US.

 

The Week Ahead: Three fights of note on Saturday:
Kelly Pavlik looks to become a ranked fighter for the first time in a while when he takes on #12 Will Rosinsky on HBO from Carson, California.

 

Tanzanian gatekeeper Francis Cheka is set to fight his very mediocre and inexperienced countryman Japhet Kaseba in their native land.

 

Undefeated Englishman Rocky Fielding is also scheduled to appear in Sheffield, but no opponent has been announced yet as far as I know.