Archive for Ian Lewison

Heavyweight: 2014, Sep 1-7

Posted in Heavyweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on December 5, 2015 by danboxing
Coming into Saturday’s 10-rounder with 6-1 novice Timur Musafarov, Denis Boytsov was fighting for his status as a top 50 heavyweight.  Even to that point, it had been a shocking fall from grace for the once-hot prospect who had been ranked in or around the top 5 within the last few years, and even as little as 9 months ago had been just one gimme win away from a shot at Klitschko.  But as you may know, he was soundly defeated by gatekeeper Alex Leapai, who claimed the shot in his stead.  Musafarov probably wasn’t as much a novice nor non-entity as I presumed him to be.  A closer look at his record reveals that his lone loss was a split decision to current #15 Erkan Teper, in a fight I now really wish I’d seen.  In retrospect, Teper may be lucky that there appears to be no video of the fight online.  But by the same token, Musafarov hadn’t beaten anybody remotely competent to this point, either.  

 

That changed on Saturday, though the typically in-the-tank German judges failed to notice.  Referee Joerg Milke, who I would have to say I typically see as one of the more fair German officials out there, was anything but in this fight.  He would break the action for little or no reason just as it appeared Musafarov was at an advantage.  Late in the fight when Boytsov was exhausted and looking to kill clock, Milke would wait about 3 or 4 ticks before moving in to break the clinch.  But even worse, he took a point from Musafarov for accidental head clashes, which to my eyes looked very run of the mill, and which didn’t seem to be especially caused by Musafarov.  

 

Boytsov was extremely out of shape, and didn’t look like much better than an average club fighter.  He didn’t do much of anything until about round 5, where he finally started to uncork some power shots.  Unfortunately for him, he only seemed to have about 2 rounds worth of gas in him for the 10 round fight, as he faded badly after two good rounds in the 5th and 6th, and was dominated, bullied, and frankly looking to survive for the last 4 rounds.  Reasonable scores could range, in my opinion, from 96-94 Musafarov to 98-92 Musafarov (technically 95-94 and 97-92 from the judges’ perspective because of the blatantly biased point deduction that they were required to honor).  Actual scores were 95-94 from Ingo Barrabas, 97-93 from Norbert Duernberger, and 98-91 from Alexander Plumanns.  I’ll give Barrabas the benefit of the doubt that maybe he just made a mistake in scoring the blood that Musafarov wore on his face in several spots due to the head clash, or that he gave some of the semi-close early rounds to Boytsov because of confirmation bias given the disparate reputations of the fighters.  Not excusable, but maybe not sinister.  Duernberger and Plumanns are likely irredeemable crooks.  Plumanns is new to me, and I kinda hope he’s quickly forgotten.  I’ve scored 2 fights along with Duernberger that I’m aware of.  He did a good job in Gbenga Oloukun vs. Edmund Gerber, but not so much in Robert Helenius vs. Sherman Williams.  So he’s 1 for 3 on turning in reasonable cards.

 

Regardless of what awful or corrupt judges say, Musafarov clearly won the fight, and Boytsov has now conclusively fallen out of the top 50.  He’s not even 30 years old yet, but he may be done.  Musafarov caught Boytsov on the way down pretty clearly, though, so he’ll need another good win or two land anywhere near the top 20.  No changes.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (Weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: Wladimir Klitschko (271-484-484)
Last Fight: 4/26/2014- TKO5 #16 Alex Leapai
Next Fight: 11/15/2014- vs. #5 Kubrat Pulev
The Pulev defense has now been rescheduled for November 15.
1) Tyson Fury (29-29-29)
Last Fight: 2/15/2014- TKO4 Joey Abell (UNR)
Next Fight: 11/22/2014- vs. #6 Dereck Chisora
After saying he was no longer interested in fighting Chisora after his rival withdrew from a scheduled fight, the fight is now rescheduled for November 22.
2) Alexander Povetkin (14-358-358)
Last Fight: 5/30/2014- TKO7 Manuel Charr (UNR)
Next Fight: 10/24/2014- vs. #7 Carlos Takam
Povetkin will attempt to halt the meteoric rise of rugged slugger Carlos Takam when the two meet in Russia on October 24.
3) Vyacheslav Glazkov (14-25-89)
Last Fight: 8/9/2014- W(MD10) vs. Derric Rossy (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Glazkov didn’t exactly earn any style points for his lazy showing against big underdog Rossy, but a win’s a win, I suppose…
4) Amir Mansour (22-22-22)
Last Fight: 4/4/2014- Robbery L (UD10) vs. #4 Steve Cunningham
Next Fight: Unknown
Cunningham had the more sympathetic story and a legitimately great comeback attempt, but Mansour had the better collection of rounds legitimately won.  Mansour was robbed even though the fight was close, and deserves Cunningham’s former position in the rankings for his effort.
5) Kubrat Pulev (29-122-199)
Last Fight: 4/5/2014- RTD3 Ivica Perkovic (UNR)
Next Fight: 11/15/2014- vs. Champ Wladimir Klitschko
See Klitschko’s notes, above.
6) Dereck Chisora (29-144-207)
Last Fight: 2/15/2014- UD12 Kevin Johnson (UNR)
Next Fight: 11/22/2014- vs. #1 Tyson Fury
See Fury’s notes, above.
7) Carlos Takam (13-13-33)
Last Fight: 6/6/2014- UD12 #9 Tony Thompson
Next Fight: 10/24/2014- vs. #2 Alexander Povetkin
Takam looks to go from contender to international superstar when he looks to topple Povetkin in Russia in late October.
8) Bermane Stiverne (13-17-79)
Last Fight: 5/10/2014- TKO6 #13 Chris Arreola
Next Fight: Unknown
Stiverne had been looking at November for a big fight with Wilder.  Purse bids are scheduled for 9/12.
9) Steve Cunningham (13-89-89)
Last Fight: 4/4/2014- Robbery W (UD10) vs. Amir Mansour (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
There are unconfirmed reports of a potential fight with Bryant Jennings in the works.  It would make sense, as both guys are Main Events fighters.
10) Tony Thompson (13-24-223)
Last Fight: 6/6/2014- L (UD12) vs. #12 Carlos Takam
Next Fight: 10/?/2014- vs. #12 Odlanier Solis
Thompson will be giving Odlanier Solis a well-deserved rematch in October, it would appear.
11) Tomasz Adamek (13-228)
Last Fight: 3/15/2014- L (UD12) vs. #18 Vyacheslav Glazkov
Next Fight: 11/8/2014- vs. Artur Szpilka (UNR)
Originally penciled in for October 18 in Lodz, it now appears that Adamek-Szpilka is destined for November 8 in Krakow.
12) Odlanier Solis (13-223)
Last Fight: 3/22/2014- L* (SD12) vs. #13 Tony Thompson
Next Fight: 10/?/2014- vs. #10 Tony Thompson
After taking a tough loss and a heap of excessive criticism in a fight he frankly deserved to win, Solis will get a chance to avenge the slight with an October rematch with Tony Thompson.
13) Deontay Wilder (17-71)
Last Fight: 8/16/2014- W(RTD4) vs. Jason Gavern (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
See Stiverne’s notes, above.
14) Chris Arreola (17-52)
Last Fight: 5/10/2014- L (TKO6) vs. #12 Bermane Stiverne
Next Fight: Unknown
Arreola had elbow surgery, but is expected back in the ring in October.
15) Erkan Teper (22-53)
Last Fight: 6/13/2014- RTD6 Newfel Ouatah (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Teper’s effort in his last fight- and perhaps especially in the gym leading up to it- was awful, and he got lucky when his opponent turned out to be almost as out of shape as him, in addition to being an apparent quitter.
16) Alex Leapai (22-41)
Last Fight: 4/26/2014- L (KO5) vs. Champ Wladimir Klitschko
Next Fight: 10/24/2014- vs. Malik Scott (UNR)
After intended fights with Shannon Briggs and Sam Peter fell through, Leapai will have an interesting matchup with Malik Scott.
17) Andy Ruiz (22-41)
Last Fight: 5/17/2014- TKO2 Manuel Quezada (UNR)
Next Fight: 9/20/2014- vs. Sergey Liakhovich (UNR)
Ruiz will headline a Solo Boxeo card from Phoenix on September 20 against former contender and current journeyman Sergey Liakhovich.
18) Seth Mitchell (22-65)
Last Fight: 9/7/2013- L (TKO1) vs. Chris Arreola (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Mitchell will be out for inactivity next week, unless he should schedule something by then- something there’s been zero buzz about.
19) Bryant Jennings (6-6)
Last Fight: 7/26/2014- W* (SD12) vs. Mike Perez (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Reasonable minds can disagree on the correct result of Jennings-Perez.  What’s clear, though, is that Jennings is not nearly ready for Klitschko, a fight some of his supporters have been proposing for a while now.  He himself appears to want the Wilder-Stiverne winner, which might be more within his competency.
20) Mike Perez (6-6)
Last Fight: 7/26/2014- L* (SD12) vs. Bryant Jennings (UNR)
Next Fight: 11/?/2014 – vs. Unknown Opponent
Perez, who calls Cork, Ireland home, will return to his home base in November when he headlines a card there.  Details TBD.

 

THE WEEK AHEAD:
Saturday
Ian Lewison vs. Gary Cornish; Paisley, Scotland; TV Unknown
This is a nice little under-the-radar matchup.  Lewison impressed in his Prizefighter appearance, having destroyed Timo Hoffmann and gotten a bit of a raw deal in the 2nd round against Derric Rossy.  This fight could get him legitimately on the map for the first time, but the fact that they’re fighting in 6’7″ Scotsman Cornish’s back yard should tell you something about which fighter is thought to have the brighter future.

Heavyweight: 2014, Jun 16-22

Posted in Heavyweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on November 6, 2014 by danboxing
Monday in Kaltaker, Switzerland, undefeated Swiss-based Kosovo prospect Arnold Gjergjaj pretty much beat down low-level Hungarian journeyman Tibor Balogh for a 2nd-round TKO.  Balogh gave an honest effort, winging wide shots recklessly whenever he got the chance, and occasionally even connecting to little apparent effect.  But it was the much taller Gjergjaj who was able to get a lot more leverage on his slightly less wide shots, and he essentially seemed to drive Balogh to the canvas with the sheer weight of his punches for at least a couple of the 4 knockdowns he scored in the 2-round fight.

 

Later that night in Glasgow, Scotland, British prospect Ian Lewison dropped terrible Croatian opponent Kreso Bogdanovic and in the 2nd, and caused him to quit after that round.  That’s the best report I can give you, with no video available.

 

#15 Erkan Teper of Germany was in action in Munich on Friday, but action might be the wrong word.  Teper was outpunched probably about 6 or 7 to 1 by his fellow undefeated opponent, Newfel Ouatah of France.  Teper’s superior power and accuracy kept him in the fight despite being so vastly outworked, though.  After losing the first three rounds pretty clearly on my card (the first in dominant fashion), Teper finally got on the board by knocking his man down in the 4th after pinning him on the ropes and dislodging his mouthpiece.  It still wasn’t exactly a blowout, but he did earn the 10-8.  Ouatah came back strong in the following round to again earn the round in pretty dominant fashion, but appeared to fade a bit in the 6th, which was the second round I gave to Teper.  The actual effective punches were fairly even, but Teper was coming forward and had Ouatah’s back scraping the ropes for almost the entire round.  I had Ouatah up 57-56 at that point, and so I was shocked when the Frenchman inexplicably quit on his stool after the bell rang to begin the 7th.  I couldn’t find any detailed firsthand reports on the fight, aside from German-language pro-Teper puff pieces, and so I have no idea what Ouatah’s excuse for quitting was, but I certainly didn’t see any obvious injury or pain that might explain it.  It looked like he just gave up.  If true, that’s shameful.  Even if he felt totally spent when he quit, he ought to have kept trying.  Teper was visibly out of shape, and had been gasping for air between rounds since at least the end of round 2.  For what it’s worth, one judge- Grzegorz Molenda- had a respectable card at 58-55 Ouatah at the time of the stoppage.  The other two, Massimo Montanini and Soren Saugmann, were either corrupt or were blatantly rooting for Teper, and each had it 59-54 for the guy clearly losing the fight.

 

No changes this week.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (Weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: Wladimir Klitschko (260-473-473)
Last Fight: 4/26/2014- TKO5 #16 Alex Leapai
Next Fight: 9/6/2014- vs. #5 Kubrat Pulev
It’s looking all but certain that Wlad will fight Pulev on September 6.
1) Tyson Fury (18-18-18)
Last Fight: 2/15/2014- TKO4 Joey Abell (UNR)
Next Fight: 7/26/2014- vs. #6 Dereck Chisora
Fury-Chisora has been made.  July 26, in Manchester.  The winner will become one of Wlad’s mandatories.
2) Alexander Povetkin (3-347-347)
Last Fight: 5/30/2014- TKO7 Manuel Charr (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Povetkin wants to return in late October, and wants to rematch the Champ when he’s gotten at least 3 fights in with his new trainer.
3) Vyacheslav Glazkov (3-14-78)
Last Fight: 3/15/2014- UD12 #4 Tomasz Adamek
Next Fight: 8/9/2014- vs. Unknown Opponent
Glazkov returns in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania on August 9, in a fight with an undetermined opponent to be televised on NBC Sports.
4) Amir Mansour (11-11-11)
Last Fight: 4/4/2014- Robbery L (UD10) vs. #4 Steve Cunningham
Next Fight: Unknown
Cunningham had the more sympathetic story and a legitimately great comeback attempt, but Mansour had the better collection of rounds legitimately won.  Mansour was robbed even though the fight was close, and deserves Cunningham’s former position in the rankings for his effort.
5) Kubrat Pulev (18-111-188)
Last Fight: 4/5/2014- RTD3 Ivica Perkovic (UNR)
Next Fight: 9/6/2014- vs. Champ Wladimir Klitschko
See Klitschko’s notes, above.
6) Dereck Chisora (18-133-196)
Last Fight: 2/15/2014- UD12 Kevin Johnson (UNR)
Next Fight: 7/26/2014- vs. #1 Tyson Fury
See Fury’s notes, above.
7) Carlos Takam (2-2-22)
Last Fight: 6/6/2014- UD12 #9 Tony Thompson
Next Fight: Unknown
Takam’s potential appears nearly boundless after he handled Tony Thompson more easily than anyone not named Wladimir Klitschko.
8) Bermane Stiverne (2-6-68)
Last Fight: 5/10/2014- TKO6 #13 Chris Arreola
Next Fight: Unknown
Stiverne is hoping to fight Wilder sometime in November in either Montreal or Las Vegas.
9) Steve Cunningham (2-78-78)
Last Fight: 4/4/2014- Robbery W (UD10) vs. Amir Mansour (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
I hope you’ll all pray for his daughter to recover from her life-threatening health condition, and the guy had guts to come back from the 2 knockdowns.  But he didn’t win the fight.
10) Tony Thompson (2-13-212)
Last Fight: 6/6/2014- L (UD12) vs. #12 Carlos Takam
Next Fight: Unknown
Not that there’s any shame in being beaten by Takam necessarily, but Thompson’s performance was poor enough that you have to start wondering how much he has left.
11) Tomasz Adamek (2-217)
Last Fight: 3/15/2014- L (UD12) vs. #18 Vyacheslav Glazkov
Next Fight: Unknown
Adamek expects to return on October 18.  Not much detail yet, but Ray Austin is a potential opponent.
12) Odlanier Solis (2-212)
Last Fight: 3/22/2014- L* (SD12) vs. #13 Tony Thompson
Next Fight: Unknown
The Solis haters are out in force, claiming a clear loss in a fight that Solis deserved to win.  You might not like his physique or his training habits or his style, but if he outfights the other guy, he still deserves to be respected as a winner at least as much as a disappointment.  A loss to Thompson is not that embarrassing, especially when you ought to have won it.
13) Deontay Wilder (6-60)
Last Fight: 3/15/2014- KO1 #19 Malik Scott
Next Fight: Unknown
See Stiverne’s notes, above.
14) Chris Arreola (6-41)
Last Fight: 5/10/2014- L (TKO6) vs. #12 Bermane Stiverne
Next Fight: Unknown
Having spent the better part of the last 5 years losing or fighting nobodies, Arreola’s resume now depends entirely on the Mitchell win.
15) Erkan Teper (11-42)
Last Fight: 6/13/2014- RTD6 Newfel Ouatah (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Teper’s effort in his last fight- and perhaps especially in the gym leading up to it- was awful, and he got lucky when his opponent turned out to be almost as out of shape as him, in addition to being an apparent quitter.
16) Alex Leapai (11-30)
Last Fight: 4/26/2014- L (KO5) vs. Champ Wladimir Klitschko
Next Fight: Unknown
Leapai is reportedly interested in fighting Shannon Briggs in the wake of his total non-performance against the Champ.
17) Andy Ruiz (11-30)
Last Fight: 5/17/2014- TKO2 Manuel Quezada (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Even against a faded Quezada who showed little resistance, I must confess to being impressed by Ruiz’s skill and heavy hands, especially considering the sharp contrast between his physique and the results it yields.
18) Seth Mitchell (11-54)
Last Fight: 9/7/2013- L (TKO1) vs. Chris Arreola (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Mitchell’s chin is so fragile that he might want to consider calling it a career.  Golden Boy’s CEO says he’s advised Mitchell to do just that, though he reports that Mitchell seems to have no such intention.
19) Johnathon Banks (11-15)
Last Fight: 6/22/2013- L (UD12) vs. #20 Seth Mitchell
Next Fight: Unknown
Banks had an offer to fight in the Auckland Super 8 Tournament on June 6, but either turned it down or failed to respond.  He’ll need to schedule something else in the next week to avoid removal for inactivity.
20) Francesco Pianeta (11-14)
Last Fight: 5/30/2014- KO1 Mickael Vieira (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Pianeta says he wants to give Vieira a rematch due to the flukey broken arm that KO’d the Frenchman.  The fight was a waste of time the first time, honestly, so I’m not sure we need a second helping, regardless of the reason.

 

THE WEEK AHEAD: No action to report.

Heavyweight: 2014, Jun 9-15

Posted in Heavyweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on October 31, 2014 by danboxing
The heavyweight week got off to an interesting start on Wednesday with the New Zealand version of Prizefighter, dubbed the “Super 8.”  The field was made up of 50% has-beens (some more viable than others) like Michael Sprott, Martin Rogan, Kali Meehan, Hasim Rahman, an inactive career high-level journeyman in Alonzo Butler, and 3 novices in Brice Ritani-Coe, Hunter Sam, and Antz Nansen.  I’m not sure if it was a random draw or a true seeding system (they called it seeding), but if it was the latter, it was a misbegotten attempt.  The correct order of seeding would have been #1 Sprott vs. #8 Brice Ritani-Coe, #2 Martin Rogan vs. #7 Antz Nansen, #3 Kali Meehan vs. #6 Hunter Sam, and #4 Hasim Rahman vs. #5 Alonzo Butler.  As it happened, the Meehan-Sam fight was an actual matchup, but the rest were not.  #1 Sprott instead fought #2 Rogan inexplicably in the first round, while #4 Rahman and #5 Butler each got what should have been easy matchups in Nansen and Ritani-Coe, respectively.  I’ll break down the action fight by fight.

 

Round 1
1. Hasim Rahman, the inactive former champion who looked awful in his last fight with Alexander Povetkin in 2012, looked even more awful against 3-2 novice Antz Nansen, whose inclusion in the tournament in the first place couldn’t have been more random.  Nansen was coming off back-to-back losses against bad fighters with losing records, including one by KO.  His last loss was against an 0-10 fighter, and so it would have been more reasonable to assume he was in the bottom 5% of all pro heavyweights than to assume he belonged in a ring even with  a badly faded Rahman.  But apparently Rahman’s fadedness knew no bounds.  His handspeed was non-existent, and his footwork and balance were pathetic.  He was almost totally non-threatening, as even if Nansen couldn’t see every shot coming about 5 seconds before it arrived, Rahman was reaching so badly that he couldn’t have had much power.  Even so, I gave him the first round in a close call before Nansen took the last two going away.  Two of the judges had it the same as me, while a third had it a shutout.

 

2. Alonzo Butler- an American who was once a serious prospect, but who failed the only two times he tried his hand with a top 50 opponent, and who has had only 2 fights since 2009- fought his own 3-2 novice in Brice Ritani-Coe.  Ritani-Coe had zero boxrec rankings points entering the fight, and while he did suffer a draw against a 3-5 nobody in 2012, his two actual losses were at least more forgivable.  He dropped a decision to Jerry Forrest, a 1-0 prospect who now has a loss, but only against legit prospect Gerald Washington, and in his next fight he dropped a decision to current hot prospect Joseph Parker.  For no reason at all, the mammoth Butler- who had more than 35 pounds on his 260 pound opponent, chose to try and fight like Miguel Vazquez.  He was on the back foot, by choice, the entire time, and honestly didn’t really seem to be trying before he appeared to gas out in the 2nd round.  You could make a case for Butler winning the 3rd, but I had it a shutout for Ritani-Coe, who won essentially just by working.  He came forward, which made him the aggressor by a mile, and threw punches with reasonable regularity.  It was an easy formula.  One judge, Jeff Nelson, turned in a 30-27 card in favor of Butler, which is one of the silliest things you’ll ever see.  The other two were more reasonable, scoring it 29-28 for Ritani-Coe, who advanced in the second upset in as many fights.

 

3. Tall Kiwi veteran Kali Meehan, a former contender aged 44 years and without a fight in over 2 years, got through some apparent rust and made it through a very competitive test against the 10-2 Hunter Sam, who fought well despite his record being probably a little better than the reality underlying it.  Meehan was actually trailing significantly in the vitally important 3rd round, but came back strong at the end to take it pretty clearly.  The already questionable Jeff Nelson struck again, scoring it for Sam.  Meehan advances, though not by a lot.
 
4. Michael Sprott vs. Martin Rogan was a fight that really shouldn’t have been possible until the finals, give or take.  Not only were both guys Prizefighter champions at some point (Sprott twice, including the most recent), but both have had relatively recent success against top 25 opposition.  Sprott won round one with ease, but with Rogan’s surprisingly straighter punches gave his shots greater leverage and power, and he hurt Sprott in the 2nd, and kept him in borderline buzzed status for the rest of the fight.  Rounds two and three were as clear for Rogan as round one was for Sprott, and thus the correct score was a very clear 29-28 Rogan.  But this time the judges went too far in crappiness, and botched the result.  Nelson wasn’t even involved, surprisingly.  Paul McSharry scored an even round in one of Rogan’s two, and therefore had it 29-29.  Laurie Glozier and Steve Miles inexplicably had it 29-28 for Sprott, and thus the wrong guy moved on in a clear robbery that marred a really good fight.

 

Round 2:
1. After an intermission that included a couple entertaining 4-rounders, Sprott returned on short rest and outpointed Nansen in what I would call a lackluster performance in a lackluster fight.  Basically Sprott won it simply by being first behind the jab.  It’s not that Nansen didn’t try, but he couldn’t grab the initiative and was ineffective and comparatively wild when he tried to counter, or to punch in general.  I had it a shutout, though all the rounds were kinda close, and round 1 in particular could have gone either way.  All the judges had it a shutout, just like me.  Putting Sprott in the Final despite winning a closely-contested fight against a nobody and, by all rights, losing to a gatekeeper in Rogan.

 

2. The action continued with Meehan vs. Ritani-Coe, who from now on I’ll just call Coe for brevity’s sake, in a battle of Kiwis at very different career stages.  Meehan landed almost at will early, apparently having left the rust of the first fight far behind him.  Despite the defensive lapses against a solid puncher, Coe showed impressive desire as Meehan began to look a little tired and sloppy from about the midway point of round 2.  By the third, Meehan was just looking to hold on, as Coe won that round going away with Meehan trying to hang on him.  29-28 was the clearly correct score, and all the judges got it right this time.  Meehan moves on to the final on shorter rest, and looking like the more tired fighter in the first place.

 

Final:
In a bit of a surprise, Sprott just got caught and dropped by Meehan, and continued getting caught until the fight was stopped after he rose in wobbly fashion from the first round’s second knockdown.

 

I doubt anyone has ever looked as bad in making the finals of a tournament like this.  A top 50 fighter was rightfully defeated twice in the tournament, and it was Sprott both times.  I’ll get to the rankings implications later.

 

Moving ahead to Friday, #12 Carlos Takam dominated the first 9 rounds against #9 Tony Thompson before apparently deciding to coast his way to three lackluster rounds to finish the fight, winning 117-111 on my card.  I don’t want to be too hard on Thompson, who follows me on Twitter and is a great guy, but even aside from probably not having the physical tools to compete with the strong and comparatively young Takam, he fought a terrible tactical fight.  He spent perhaps most of the fight with his back to the ropes and Takam more or less on his chest, which was not a fight he could remotely win considering his height, long arms, and slow hands.  Not only that, but he circled consistently to his left, especially early in the fight.  This not only lined him up nicely for Takam’s power shots, but also frequently rendered his own jab largely useless.  Robin Dolpierre and Daniel Van de Wiele had it the same as me at 117-111, while Barry Lindenman was maybe a little kind to Takam’s spoiling strategy late, but still had it fairly reasonably 119-109.

 

Finally, in Saturday action, 2-loss Liverpool prospect David Price (whose two losses were to Thompson, incidentally) turned in a workmanlike 10-round decision win over durable but ultimately low-level Ukrainian journeyman Yaroslav Zavorotnyi in Schwerin, Germany, in a fight that was anything but scintillating.  In fairness, Zavorotnyi had only been stopped twice in a long career- once to Valuev and once to Dimitrenko- and had gone an 8-round distance with no less than Kubrat Pulev.  So it’s not like Price let a bum hang around who was just looking to collect a check.  On the other hand, Price is supposed to be a much bigger puncher than any of the three guys mentioned above, and had built his pre-Thompson career on being an intimidating destroyer that knocked guys out viciously, generally in the first couple rounds.  This was only Price’s 3rd decision in 20 fights, and his first of over 6 rounds.  The bottom line is that regardless of Zavorotnyi’s bona fides, Price simply doesn’t look like the same monster that terrorized the likes of Audley Harrison less than a couple years ago.  He was very jab-heavy and cautious in the fight.  He does have a suspect chin and most likely won each of the first 7 rounds with those tactics, so perhaps it wasn’t the worst idea from a competitive perspective.  From an analytical perspective, however, it’s hard not to be down on a performance like that.  Frankly, Price looked like a guy trying to rebuild his technique from scratch.  In addition to the aforementioned caution and reliance on the jab, he was rather robotic and deliberate in letting his hands go, as if his offense was no longer flowing naturally.  I don’t know if it was fatigue, or if perhaps the Ukrainian just didn’t feel he had to worry as much about getting knocked out, and thus took more chances, but Zavorotnyi’s shots started finding a home behind Price’s gloves in the 8th round, and he had an argument to have won every round from that point on.  I gave him 8 and 9, personally, and scored it 98-92.  Gerhard Sigl agreed with my card.  Josef Temml had it 100-90, and thus probably didn’t watch the fight.  Joerg Milke turned in a 97-92 card, which is about right, but numerically puzzling nevertheless.  

 

Now to the rankings implications of all the above.  If Sprott had beaten Rogan legitimately before losing to Meehan, it might have given the Kiwi the fuel he needed to make a run at or near the top 20.  Since Sprott was slightly diminished by the Rogan fight instead of better for it, Meehan, Sprott, and Rogan all find themselves mired in the 30s.  Takam boosts himself to #7, halted only by Dereck Chisora, whose deserved win over #4-ranked Helenius is by far the best result between the two still, and who has only lost to the very top level (ie guys ranked #1-2 then or now).  Thompson drops less drastically than you might think, backtracking only the one place required by Takam’s promotion.  This is due largely to Adamek having no legitimate wins of consequence since 2012 to go with his loss to #18 Glazkov, while Thompson at least has the debatable win over #8 Solis to go with his wins over prospect Price and his loss to the more prestigious Takam.  This means that Adamek is forced from the top 10 after being an inaugural and continuous member of my top 10, and having been ranked by the Ring for 5 weeks before I started publishing.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (Weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: Wladimir Klitschko (259-472-472)
Last Fight: 4/26/2014- TKO5 #16 Alex Leapai
Next Fight: 9/6/2014- vs. #5 Kubrat Pulev
It’s looking all but certain that Wlad will fight Pulev on September 6.
1) Tyson Fury (17-17-17)
Last Fight: 2/15/2014- TKO4 Joey Abell (UNR)
Next Fight: 7/26/2014- vs. #6 Dereck Chisora
Fury-Chisora has been made.  July 26, in Manchester.  The winner will become one of Wlad’s mandatories.
2) Alexander Povetkin (2-346-346)
Last Fight: 5/30/2014- TKO7 Manuel Charr (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Povetkin made a case that he’s the most technically skilled heavyweight in the division with a beautifully-executed performance against an outclassed Charr.
3) Vyacheslav Glazkov (2-13-77)
Last Fight: 3/15/2014- UD12 #4 Tomasz Adamek
Next Fight: Unknown
Reports have a fight between Glazkov and Main Events stablemate Bryant Jennings being targeted for July on HBO.
4) Amir Mansour (10-10-10)
Last Fight: 4/4/2014- Robbery L (UD10) vs. #4 Steve Cunningham
Next Fight: Unknown
Cunningham had the more sympathetic story and a legitimately great comeback attempt, but Mansour had the better collection of rounds legitimately won.  Mansour was robbed even though the fight was close, and deserves Cunningham’s former position in the rankings for his effort.
5) Kubrat Pulev (17-110-187)
Last Fight: 4/5/2014- RTD3 Ivica Perkovic (UNR)
Next Fight: 9/6/2014- vs. Champ Wladimir Klitschko
See Klitschko’s notes, above.
6) Dereck Chisora (17-132-195)
Last Fight: 2/15/2014- UD12 Kevin Johnson (UNR)
Next Fight: 7/26/2014- vs. #1 Tyson Fury
See Fury’s notes, above.
7) Carlos Takam (1-1-21)
Last Fight: 6/6/2014- UD12 #9 Tony Thompson
Next Fight: Unknown
Takam’s potential appears nearly boundless after he handled Tony Thompson more easily than anyone not named Wladimir Klitschko.
8) Bermane Stiverne (1-5-67)
Last Fight: 5/10/2014- TKO6 #13 Chris Arreola
Next Fight: Unknown
Stiverne is hoping to fight Wilder sometime in November in either Montreal or Las Vegas.
9) Steve Cunningham (1-77-77)
Last Fight: 4/4/2014- Robbery W (UD10) vs. Amir Mansour (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
I hope you’ll all pray for his daughter to recover from her life-threatening health condition, and the guy had guts to come back from the 2 knockdowns.  But he didn’t win the fight.
10) Tony Thompson (1-12-211)
Last Fight: 6/6/2014- L (UD12) vs. #12 Carlos Takam
Next Fight: Unknown
Not that there’s any shame in being beaten by Takam necessarily, but Thompson’s performance was poor enough that you have to start wondering how much he has left.
11) Tomasz Adamek (1-216)
Last Fight: 3/15/2014- L (UD12) vs. #18 Vyacheslav Glazkov
Next Fight: Unknown
Adamek expects to return on October 18.  Not much detail yet, but Ray Austin is a potential opponent.
12) Odlanier Solis (1-211)
Last Fight: 3/22/2014- L* (SD12) vs. #13 Tony Thompson
Next Fight: Unknown
The Solis haters are out in force, claiming a clear loss in a fight that Solis deserved to win.  You might not like his physique or his training habits or his style, but if he outfights the other guy, he still deserves to be respected as a winner at least as much as a disappointment.  A loss to Thompson is not that embarrassing, especially when you ought to have won it.
13) Deontay Wilder (5-59)
Last Fight: 3/15/2014- KO1 #19 Malik Scott
Next Fight: Unknown
See Stiverne’s notes, above.
14) Chris Arreola (5-40)
Last Fight: 5/10/2014- L (TKO6) vs. #12 Bermane Stiverne
Next Fight: Unknown
Having spent the better part of the last 5 years losing or fighting nobodies, Arreola’s resume now depends entirely on the Mitchell win.
15) Erkan Teper (10-41)
Last Fight: 11/16/2013- KO1 Martin Rogan (UNR)
Next Fight: 6/13/2014- vs. Newfel Ouatah (UNR)
Teper may have upgraded his opponent slightly when Ouatah replaced a slightly less-impressive French prospect in Duhaupas on just about 5 days’ notice.
16) Alex Leapai (10-29)
Last Fight: 4/26/2014- L (KO5) vs. Champ Wladimir Klitschko
Next Fight: Unknown
Leapai is reportedly interested in fighting Shannon Briggs in the wake of his total non-performance against the Champ.
17) Andy Ruiz (10-29)
Last Fight: 5/17/2014- TKO2 Manuel Quezada (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Even against a faded Quezada who showed little resistance, I must confess to being impressed by Ruiz’s skill and heavy hands, especially considering the sharp contrast between his physique and the results it yields.
18) Seth Mitchell (10-53)
Last Fight: 9/7/2013- L (TKO1) vs. Chris Arreola (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Mitchell’s chin is so fragile that he might want to consider calling it a career.  Golden Boy’s CEO says he’s advised Mitchell to do just that, though he reports that Mitchell seems to have no such intention.
19) Johnathon Banks (10-14)
Last Fight: 6/22/2013- L (UD12) vs. #20 Seth Mitchell
Next Fight: Unknown
Banks had an offer to fight in the Auckland Super 8 Tournament on June 6, but either turned it down or failed to respond.  He’ll need to schedule something else in the next few weeks to avoid removal for inactivity.
20) Francesco Pianeta (10-13)
Last Fight: 5/30/2014- KO1 Mickael Vieira (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Pianeta says he wants to give Vieira a rematch due to the flukey broken arm that KO’d the Frenchman.  The fight was a waste of time the first time, honestly, so I’m not sure we need a second helping, regardless of the reason.

 

THE WEEK AHEAD:
Monday
Arnold Gjergjaj vs. Tibor Balogh; Kaltacker, Switzerland; TV Unknown
Gjergjaj is an undefeated prospect from Kosovo originally, who now lives in Switzerland.  He’s 24-0, but still about as unproven as a top 50 fighter could possibly be.  Even so, Balogh is far from his best opponent to date, being a low-level journeyman from Hungary.

 

Ian Lewison vs. Kreso Bogdanovic; Glasgow, Scotland; Off TV
I consider Lewison a borderline top 50 fighter on the basis of a loss against Derric Rossy in Prizefighter that I thought should have been a win.  Bogdanovic is a terrible Croatian who has only once beaten a fighter with even a single win, that being the 4-8 Werner Kreiskott.

 

Friday
#15 Erkan Teper vs. Newfel Ouatah; Munich, Germany; TV Unknown
Teper is finally back in the ring after his vicious demolition of Martin Rogan’s jaw in November.  It’s kinda shocking that Rogan, whose career appeared to be over at that time, beat Teper back to action by 9 days.  Germany’s Teper has a reasonably decent opponent on his hands, or at least that appears to be a strong possibility.  Ouatah is an unbeaten Frenchman who boasts the exact same 12-0 record as Teper.  That being said, Teper is ranked due to his having been in with- and beaten- the much better competition.  Ouatah’s best wins are a couple domestic-level French journeymen in Gregory Tony and Mickael Vieira.  Those guys were nothing to write home about, but there’s a substantial drop-off from them to the next-best guy on Ouatah’s record.  Nevertheless, he disposed of both of them by stoppage, and you can never write off a guy who’s never lost, or really come close to losing as far as I can tell.  Teper needed a grand total of just over 4 minutes to stop Rogan and Michael Sprott, another fringe contender, in his last two fights.

Heavyweight: 2013, Sep 9-15

Posted in Heavyweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on September 11, 2013 by danboxing
Saturday in Indio, California, good management led Chris Arreola back to prominence in one short round.  His team should get nearly half the credit, having set him up against a highly-ranked contender with absolutely no chin.  It’s really hard to imagine a decent puncher of any overall quality not getting to Mitchell at some point, as much as I like the poor guy.  The fight went very much as I thought it would, and very much the way Mitchell probably feared.  He flashed some skill early with a nice combination or two, but the second he got caught with a decent punch, he was in trouble.  Arreola sloughed him off while Mitchell was trying to hold, and landed a punch on the way out that put his man down.  It was only a matter of time from there.  Badly hurt, Mitchell partially turned his back while going to the ropes during an Arreola onslaught, obligating referee Jack Reiss to abbreviate proceedings with about 30 seconds to go in the first.

 

A bit earlier in the night, English prospect Ian Lewison made similarly short work of English journeyman Tom Dallas, stopping his man in the second to claim the not-so-prestigious Southern Area title within the British title scheme.

 

#1 Vitali Klitschko is removed, having not fought in a year, with nothing scheduled.  You could make the argument that his hand injury should be factored in, but since the injury didn’t crop up until his 11th month with no fight, I can’t muster much sympathy.  In addition, I’ve similarly removed inactive fighters despite late-breaking injuries in the past (Mormeck comes to mind), and I’m not about to start making exceptions just for high-ranked contenders.

 

Everyone ranked #2-10 last week moves up.  Arreola reclaims a ranking at #10 after being out since May.  Mitchell falls to #16.  The reshuffling causes everyone ranked #13-16 last week to move up a spot.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (Weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: Wladimir Klitschko (220-433-433)
Last Fight: 5/4/2013- TKO6 Francesco Pianeta
Next Fight: 10/5/2013- vs. #3 Alexander Povetkin
Klitschko-Povetkin is now officially signed for 10/5 in Moscow.
1) Tyson Fury (1-112-112)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- KO7 #3 Steve Cunningham
Next Fight: 9/28/2013- vs. #2 David Haye
Fury-Haye is a done deal for September 28 in Manchester.
2) David Haye (1-61-61)
Last Fight: 7/14/2012- TKO5 #6 Dereck Chisora
Next Fight: 9/28/2013- vs. #1 Tyson Fury
See Fury’s notes, above.
3) Alexander Povetkin (1-307-307)
Last Fight: 5/17/2013- TKO3 Andrzej Wawryzk (UNR)
Next Fight: 10/5/2013- vs. Champ Wladimir Klitschko
See Wlad’s notes, above.
4) Steve Cunningham (1-38-38)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- L (KO7) vs. #6 Tyson Fury
Next Fight: Unknown
Cunningham is now sparring with the man that knocked him out in April- Tyson Fury.
5Tomasz Adamek (1-177-177)
Last Fight: 8/3/2013- UD10 Dominick Guinn (UNR)
Next Fight: 11/16/2013- #17 Vyacheslav Glazkov
With the Bryant Jennings proposal falling apart over money, Adamek will now be fighting Glazkov in one of NBC’s mid-afternoon telecasts.
6) Kubrat Pulev (1-71-148)
Last Fight: 8/24/2013- UD12 #11 Tony Thompson
Next Fight: Unknown
Pulev will now be at least one of Wlad’s mandatories after beating Thompson.
7) Dereck Chisora (1-93-156)
Last Fight: 7/20/2013- KO6* #17 Malik Scott
Next Fight: 9/21/2013- vs. Edmund Gerber (UNR)
Chisora will fight busted German prospect Edmund Gerber on the 21st.  Gerber is, in my opinion, very little threat to win a fight at this level, especially without his German home cooking.
8) Odlanier Solis (1-25-172)
Last Fight: 7/27/2013- TKO7 Yakup Saglam (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Solis might be back in October against fringe contender Franklin Lawrence.
9) Bermane Stiverne (1-12-28)
Last Fight: 4/27/2013- UD12 #15 Chris Arreola
Next Fight: Unknown
Stiverne was the victim of another delayed purse bid, as Vitali asked for and was granted another extension from the scheduled 7/22 date.
10) Chris Arreola (1-1-1)
Last Fight: 9/7/2013- TKO1 #12 Seth Mitchell
Next Fight: Unknown
Arreola may be a candidate for Wilder, or could fight for a vacant title in a rematch with Stiverne, should Vitali retire.
11) Tony Thompson (12-172)
Last Fight: 8/24/2013- L (UD12) vs. #8 Kubrat Pulev
Next Fight: Unknown
Thompson may have come up a bit short against Pulev, but he proved that even at 41, he’s still a challenge for obviously top-10 opposition.
12) Erkan Teper (1-2)
Last Fight: 8/31/2013- TKO1 Michael Sprott (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Teper impressed by putting a beating on an underrated Sprott.
13) Deontay Wilder (1-20)
Last Fight: 8/9/2013- KO1 Sergei Liakhovich (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Wilder would like to fight Arreola, has been challenged by the Odlanier Solis camp, and says he wants the Klitschkos before they retire.
14) Robert Helenius (1-172)
Last Fight: 3/23/2013- W*(UD10) vs. Michael Sprott (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
If Helenius’ team was accurate on the severity of his hand injury, it should be long healed by now, although there were immediate rumors that the injury was more serious.
15) Alexander Dimitrenko (1-139)
Last Fight: 3/9/2013- UD8 Ivica Perkovic (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Dimitrenko turned down a Pulev rematch.  He’s sparring with David Haye currently, but no word on who he might fight next.
16) Seth Mitchell (1-14)
Last Fight: 9/7/2013- L (TKO1) vs. Chris Arreola (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Mitchell’s chin is so fragile that he might want to consider calling it a career.

17) Vyacheslav Glazkov (2-38)

Last Fight: 8/3/2013- TKO2 Byron Polley (UNR)
Next Fight: 11/16/2013- vs. #5 Tomasz Adamek
Glazkov will go from a non-TV tune-up directly to a NBC-televised afternoon showdown with Adamek.
18) Malik Scott (2-29)
Last Fight: 7/20/2013- L (KO6*) vs. #8 Dereck Chisora
Next Fight: Unknown
Scott was up at 9.5 and ready to go, but Phil Edwards called the fight off in an unfortunate SNAFU.  That being said, Chisora was coming on and I already had him ahead.  Scott probably would have gone on to lose anyway.
19) Johnathon Banks (2-43)
Last Fight: 6/22/2013- L (UD12) vs. #20 Seth Mitchell
Next Fight: Unknown
Banks apparently dinged his hands up pretty good in the Mitchell fight- an alternate explanation for those who, like me, thought his inexplicable failure to follow up on his early success was a bit suspicious.  He’s been doing physical therapy, and is about ready to get back in the ring.  He’d like a rematch with Mitchell, but unfortunately a trilogy probably isn’t of much benefit to the fragile young contender at this point.
20) Denis Boytsov (2-221)
Last Fight: 6/15/2013- KO3 Alexander Nesterenko (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
After the Chisora match-up fell through, Boytsov has turned his attention to prospect Christian Hammer.

 

THE WEEK AHEAD: No action to report in the week to come as all eyes are on the mid-sized guys in Vegas.

Heavyweight: 2013, Sep 2-8

Posted in Heavyweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on September 7, 2013 by danboxing
In a wild back and forth fight with an ultimately unsatisfying ending in Remedios de Escalada, Argentina, 44 year old gatekeeper Fabio Moli threw away a probable victory and the Argentine title on Friday by hitting his opponent with an uppercut long after he’d already hit the deck.  That opponent, power-punching one-loss prospect Matias Vidondo looked quite good early, dropping Moli twice in the first 4 rounds (plus a standing 8 in the first).  But by the 5th, the big man looked completely spent, and was being tattooed from pillar to post and finally falling to his knees on what may have been a push on the back of the head.  When referee Rodolfo Stella stepped in to send Moli to a neutral corner, Moli uncorked an uppercut aimed for the chin of the fallen Vidondo, who had been down for probably a full 2 seconds.  It was blatant.  But I’m not sure it was much more than a glancing blow, despite an epic flop by Vidondo.  I don’t know how clearly Stella saw it, but I think if it were me, I’d have deducted 2 points for the intentional foul, given Vidondo 5 minutes, and tried to keep the fight going.  Still, it’s hard to feel much sympathy for the guy that intentionally uppercutted an obviously fallen opponent.

 

The following night in Basel, Switzerland, British fringe contender Michael Sprott looked to follow up on his questionable loss to Robert Helenius by testing Turkish-German undefeated prospect Erkan Teper.  It didn’t go so well.  Midway through the first round, Teper caught Sprott with a perfect counter right, dropping him heavily.  Sprott got to his feet, appearing dazed.  Seconds later he went down again, though it was incorrectly ruled a slip by the referee.  Teper continued to follow up with a barrage of headshots, at which point Sprott’s corner tossed in the towel and ended it, with about 20 seconds remaining in the round.

 

Teper debuts at #13, forcing everyone ranked #13 and below last week down a spot, and forcing Franklin Lawrence out after 26 consecutive weeks in.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (Weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: Wladimir Klitschko (219-432-432)
Last Fight: 5/4/2013- TKO6 Francesco Pianeta
Next Fight: 10/5/2013- vs. #4 Alexander Povetkin
Klitschko-Povetkin is now officially signed for 10/5 in Moscow.
1) Vitali Klitschko (256-256-256)
Last Fight: 9/8/2012- TKO4 Manuel Charr (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Vitali is struggling with a hand injury according to the WBC.  But it’s already been nearly a year, and he’s made no attempt to get a fight done.  I’ll keep him ranked based on the logical possibility that he may still schedule a fight before the 2nd week of September.  Most likely, though, he’ll be removed at that time.
2) Tyson Fury (20-111-111)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- KO7 #3 Steve Cunningham
Next Fight: 9/28/2013- vs. #3 David Haye
Fury-Haye is a done deal for September 28 in Manchester.
3) David Haye (20-60-60)
Last Fight: 7/14/2012- TKO5 #6 Dereck Chisora
Next Fight: 9/28/2013- vs. #2 Tyson Fury
See Fury’s notes, above.
4) Alexander Povetkin (60-306-306)
Last Fight: 5/17/2013- TKO3 Andrzej Wawryzk (UNR)
Next Fight: 10/5/2013- vs. Champ Wladimir Klitschko
See Wlad’s notes, above.
5) Steve Cunningham (20-37-37)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- L (KO7) vs. #6 Tyson Fury
Next Fight: Unknown
Cunningham is now sparring with the man that knocked him out in April- Tyson Fury.
6Tomasz Adamek (20-176-176)
Last Fight: 8/3/2013- UD10 Dominick Guinn (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
A collision between two of Main Events’ blue chip heavyweights is being discussed for November, as they’re looking to match Adamek with Bryant Jennings.
7) Kubrat Pulev (2-70-147)
Last Fight: 8/24/2013- UD12 #11 Tony Thompson
Next Fight: Unknown
Pulev will now be at least one of Wlad’s mandatories after beating Thompson.
8) Dereck Chisora (2-92-155)
Last Fight: 7/20/2013- KO6* #17 Malik Scott
Next Fight: 9/21/2013- vs. Edmund Gerber (UNR)
Chisora will fight busted German prospect Edmund Gerber on the 21st.  Gerber is, in my opinion, very little threat to win a fight at this level, especially without his German home cooking.
9) Odlanier Solis (13-24-171)
Last Fight: 7/27/2013- TKO7 Yakup Saglam (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Solis is now pushing for what would be a very intriguing fight with Deontay Wilder.
10) Bermane Stiverne (11-11-27)
Last Fight: 4/27/2013- UD12 #15 Chris Arreola
Next Fight: Unknown
Stiverne was the victim of another delayed purse bid, as Vitali asked for and was granted another extension from the scheduled 7/22 date.
11) Tony Thompson (11-171)
Last Fight: 8/24/2013- L (UD12) vs. #8 Kubrat Pulev
Next Fight: Unknown
Thompson may have come up a bit short against Pulev, but he proved that even at 41, he’s still a challenge for obviously top-10 opposition.
12) Seth Mitchell (11-13)
Last Fight: 6/22/2013- UD12 #10 Johnathon Banks
Next Fight: 9/7/2013- vs. Chris Arreola (UNR)
The Mitchell-Arreola fight has been moved back to Saturday the 7th instead of Friday the 6th.
13) Erkan Teper (1-1)
Last Fight: 8/31/2013- TKO1 Michael Sprott (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Teper impressed by putting a beating on an underrated Sprott.
14) Deontay Wilder (1-19)
Last Fight: 8/9/2013- KO1 Sergei Liakhovich (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Wilder would like to fight the winner of the fight between Arreola and his friend and stablemate Seth Mitchell.  He’s also been challenged by the Odlanier Solis camp, and says he wants the Klitschkos before they retire.
15) Robert Helenius (1-171)
Last Fight: 3/23/2013- W*(UD10) vs. Michael Sprott (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
If Helenius’ team was accurate on the severity of his hand injury, it should be long healed by now, although there were immediate rumors that the injury was more serious.
16) Alexander Dimitrenko (1-138)
Last Fight: 3/9/2013- UD8 Ivica Perkovic (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Dimitrenko turned down a Pulev rematch.  He’s sparring with David Haye currently, but no word on who he might fight next.
17) Vyacheslav Glazkov (1-37)
Last Fight: 8/3/2013- TKO2 Byron Polley (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Glazkov’s gift of a draw to Scott seems to have hurt his standing a bit, as his follow-up was so weak it didn’t even make TV on his promoter’s show.  He’s currently sparring with Klitschko to prepare the Champ for the Povetkin fight.
18) Malik Scott (1-28)
Last Fight: 7/20/2013- L (KO6*) vs. #8 Dereck Chisora
Next Fight: Unknown
Scott was up at 9.5 and ready to go, but Phil Edwards called the fight off in an unfortunate SNAFU.  That being said, Chisora was coming on and I already had him ahead.  Scott probably would have gone on to lose anyway.
19) Johnathon Banks (1-42)
Last Fight: 6/22/2013- L (UD12) vs. #20 Seth Mitchell
Next Fight: Unknown
Banks apparently dinged his hands up pretty good in the Mitchell fight- an alternate explanation for those who, like me, thought his inexplicable failure to follow up on his early success was a bit suspicious.  He’s been doing physical therapy, and is about ready to get back in the ring.  He’d like a rematch with Mitchell, but unfortunately a trilogy probably isn’t of much benefit to the fragile young contender at this point.
20) Denis Boytsov (1-220)
Last Fight: 6/15/2013- KO3 Alexander Nesterenko (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
After the Chisora match-up fell through, Boytsov has turned his attention to prospect Christian Hammer.

 

THE WEEK AHEAD: Two fights worth mentioning this week, both on Saturday.

 

In London, prospect Ian Lewison battles fellow Prizefighter veteran Tom Dallas in a 10-rounder.

 

Later that night in Indio, California, a very intriguing heavyweight clash pits chinny #12 Seth Mitchell against gatekeeper Chris Arreola, who will be looking to re-establish his long-time spot in the top 20.

Heavyweight: 2013, Jul 8-14

Posted in Heavyweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on July 7, 2013 by danboxing
David Price’s planned redemption in Liverpool this Saturday didn’t go according to…plan.  Tony Thompson- still somehow cast as the underdog after essentially losing only to Wladimir Klitschko in his career and making short work of Price the first time- may in some way have been more impressive in battering Price to a 5th round stoppage than he was with his flukey-looking one-punch stoppage the first time.  He rose from  a 2nd-round knockdown to break down the now-busted prospect.  Referee Marcus McDonnell did his best to rescue Price after he turned his back (more or less) during a Thompson onslaught, giving him what amounted to a standing 8 count.  But Price was clearly in no condition to go on at that point any more than he was when McDonnell first intervened, and the fight was halted.  Price’s promoter was so despondent that he had to halt the interview after the fight to avoid openly weeping.

 

Thompson did no more than confirm the prior result, however, and still has yet to beat any legit top-20 contenders to Bermane Stiverne’s two, and thus remains stuck at #11 for the time being.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (Weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: Wladimir Klitschko (211-424-424)
Last Fight: 5/4/2013- TKO6 Francesco Pianeta
Next Fight: 10/5/2013- vs. #4 Alexander Povetkin
Klitschko-Povetkin is now officially signed for 10/5 in Moscow.
1) Vitali Klitschko (248-248-248)
Last Fight: 9/8/2012- TKO4 Manuel Charr (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
The Vitali-Stiverne deadline has passed with no deal, but I can’t find any evidence that a scheduled purse bid has been held or rescheduled.  Pretty odd for a very big international fight.
2) Tyson Fury (12-103-103)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- KO7 #3 Steve Cunningham
Next Fight: Unknown
It sounds as if there’s a good chance that Fury-Haye will be a done deal by the end of the week.
3) David Haye (12-52-52)
Last Fight: 7/14/2012- TKO5 #6 Dereck Chisora
Next Fight: Unknown
If Haye doesn’t schedule a fight by the end of the week, he risks being removed.  Since a Fury deal appears imminent, I will likely give him a bit of latitude, though, so long as that remains the case.
4) Alexander Povetkin (52-298-298)
Last Fight: 5/17/2013- TKO3 Andrzej Wawryzk (UNR)
Next Fight: 10/5/2013- vs. Champ Wladimir Klitschko
See Wlad’s notes, above.
5) Steve Cunningham (12-29-29)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- L (KO7) vs. #6 Tyson Fury
Next Fight: Unknown
Only time will tell where Cunningham goes form here.  His hopes for a title shot are dashed at least for awhile.  Perhaps a trilogy with Adamek would make sense at this point.
6Tomasz Adamek (12-168-168)
Last Fight: 12/22/2012- W (SD12)* vs. CW #4 Steve Cunningham (Robbery)
Next Fight: 8/3/2013- vs. Tony Grano (UNR)
Adamek will fight high-level journeyman Tony Grano on NBC Sports from the Mohegan Sun in Connecticut.  He’s one fight too late, as journeyman/prospect Eric Molina already exposed Grano in April.
7) Kubrat Pulev (5-62-139)
Last Fight: 9/29/2012- KO11 Alexander Ustinov (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
The EBU has mandated a rematch with Dimitrenko as his next title defense, with purse bids to be held on July 10.
8) Dereck Chisora (5-84-147)
Last Fight: 4/20/2013- TKO9 Hector Avila (UNR)
Next Fight: 7/20/2013- vs. #17 Malik Scott
In a surprise announcement, Chisora will be fighting Malik Scott- a much better opponent than the other guys that had been discussed.
9) Odlanier Solis (5-16-163)
Last Fight: 3/22/2013- UD12 Leif Larsen (UNR)
Next Fight: 7/27/2013- vs. Yakup Saglam (UNR)
Solis has signed on to fight in a planned WBC “World Cup” tournament, but for now is set for a tune-up type fight against Turkish journeyman Yakup Saglam.
10) Bermane Stiverne (3-3-19)
Last Fight: 4/27/2013- UD12 #15 Chris Arreola
Next Fight: Unknown
Stiverne is hoping that Vitali doesn’t retire so that he can try and do the honors himself.  At this point he’d be a pretty credible opponent, too.
11) Tony Thompson (3-163)
Last Fight: 7/6/2013- TKO5 David Price (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
After twice conquering arguably Britain’s greatest heavyweight hope, Thompson suggested he is interested in getting a British promoter, and would like to fight Tyson Fury.
12) Seth Mitchell (3-5)
Last Fight: 6/22/2013- UD12 #10 Johnathon Banks
Next Fight: Unknown
Banks wants a trilogy, but I’m not sure I see the percentages in it.  The fans won’t want it after the mundane last 9 rounds, and it’s not going to enhance Mitchell’s career much at this point, even with another dominant win.
13) Deontay Wilder (5-11)
Last Fight: 4/27/2013- TKO1 Audley Harrison (UNR)
Next Fight: 8/9/2013- vs. Sergei Liakhovich (UNR)
Wilder will fight Sergei Liakhovich in Indio, California on August 9.
14) Robert Helenius (5-163)
Last Fight: 3/23/2013- W*(UD10) vs. Michael Sprott (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
If Helenius’ team was accurate on the severity of his hand injury, it should be healed by about now, although there were immediate rumors that the injury was more serious.
15) Alexander Dimitrenko (5-130)
Last Fight: 3/9/2013- UD8 Ivica Perkovic (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Dimitrenko is now the mandatory challenger for Pulev’s European belt, though it sounded a week ago like Pulev was about to sign for a fight with Chagaev.
16) Vyacheslav Glazkov (5-29)
Last Fight: 2/23/2013- Draw* (SD10) vs. Malik Scott (UNR)
Next Fight: 8/3/2013- vs. Alonzo Butler (UNR)
Glazkov will be back in action for the Main Events/NBC Sports card on August 3 in Connecticut against journeyman Alonzo Butler.
17) Malik Scott (5-20)
Last Fight: 2/23/2013- Draw* (SD10) vs. #19 Vyacheslav Glazkov
Next Fight: 7/20/2013- vs. #8 Dereck Chisora
Scott will travel to London and try upset Dereck Chisora on July 20.
18) Johnathon Banks (3-34)
Last Fight: 6/22/2013- L (UD12) vs. #20 Seth Mitchell
Next Fight: Unknown
See Mitchell’s notes, above.
19) Denis Boytsov (3-212)
Last Fight: 6/15/2013- KO3 Alexander Nesterenko (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Boytsov knocked out novice Ukrainian Nesterenko in a very short-notice fight on June 15.  No word on a worthwhile fight for the unbeaten Russian, though.
20) Franklin Lawrence (3-19)
Last Fight: 1/25/2013- Mark Brown (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Lawrence reportedly pulled out of a planned (and very good) crossroads fight with prospect Bryant Jennings.

 

THE WEEK AHEAD: English prospect Ian Lewison looks to avenge his only legitimate loss (as far as I know- it was by one point and I didn’t see it) on Saturday in London against Irish journeyman Colin Kenna.

Heavyweight: 2013, Feb 25- Mar 3

Posted in Heavyweight, Rankings with tags , , , , , , , on February 28, 2013 by danboxing
Insanely busy weeks with a lot of important fights are always tough to organize.  Here’s my best effort, roughly in order of importance.

 

#15 Tony Thompson took out unranked fringe contending and undefeated English prospect David Price in the latter’s hometown of Liverpool, and needed just 2 rounds to accomplish the task.  After Price had apparently taken full control earlier in the 2nd, Thompson caught Price with a bit of an awkward looping right hand on the inside just above the ear.  It wasn’t particularly flush, nor did it appear to have an extraordinary amount of weight behind it.  I would say it was a classic equilibrium shot, except that Price collapsed very quickly as if hit on the chin.  If I had to guess, I’d say that it was indeed a bit of an equilibrium shot, but also that Price simply doesn’t take a head shot very well in general.  This was seen as a huge upset, though it’s hard for me to see it that way when Thompson had never lost to anyone not named Wladimir Klitschko since a 4-rounder in 2000, and since Price had never fought anyone in the top 25.

 

Another prospect had his own share of struggles a bit later on Saturday, when #19 Vyacheslav Glazkov of the Ukraine took on fellow undefeated prospect Malik Scott of Philadelphia on Long Island.  Scott had control of the fight throughout.  That’s not to say he dominated by any means.  Just that whatever Scott did or didn’t do made all the difference in the fight, while Glazkov’s efforts remained fairly steady and mediocre.  How did that play out?  Well, Scott clearly won the first 3 rounds behind a sharp jab, and lost the next two when he slowed down a bit.  Scott then reasserted himself slightly to sweep the last 5 rounds on my card. 

 

Judge John Poturaj saw it exactly as I did at 98-92.  But John McKaie had it 96-94 for Glazkov, while Julie Lederman had it all even.  That does bother me, because I think Scott pretty clearly won the fight, but at the same time, of the last 5 rounds that I gave to Scott, I do think Glazkov had an argument in 4 of them, since Scott had lost a lot of steam and was just doing enough in terms of activity to barely nick each frame.  I can’t necessarily say that any of the judges got any specific round blatantly wrong, but I think Lederman’s 95-95 and especially McKaie’s 96-94 indicate mild but consistent bias in favor of Glazkov, the house fighter.  Favoring the house fighter is unfortunately nothing new for McKaie and Lederman, who teamed up to rob Ossie Duran blind against Brandon Gonzales.  McKaie is particularly notable for his poor cards.  Among his other lowlights: he gave Jerson Ravelo the decision against Joey Spina in a fight that was clearly either a draw or a win for Spina in March 2012, had Mayfield-Herrera a bit too close in October, and was fixing to rob Luis Abregu until he stopped Thomas Dulorme the same night.  He’s had some good cards mixed in there too, but he’s a very busy judge that I would consider a risky choice if I were making the appointments.
 
 

In London on the same busy evening, the latest installment of the Prizefighter series brought international heavyweights together for a series of 3-rounders.  The field of 8 included 2 members of the top 50 in Albert Sosnowski and Travis Walker.  Sosnowski in particular was something like a co-winner of the last installment, having been blatantly robbed in the semis.  But neither of these two deserved favorites made it past the first round.  Sosnowski was roughed up and stopped late in the 3rd by a 41 year old but apparently resurgent Martin Rogan, who was last seen in high level action getting clowned, dominated, and stopped by a southpaw version of Tyson Fury.  Walker lost a close split decision to fellow American Derric Rossy, a former prospect who was easily handled in consecutive fights by Eddie Chambers, Kubrat Pulev, and Maurice Harris.  British journeyman Audley Harrison took advantage of an easy first-round assignment by scoring a sensational one-punch stoppage of Danish journeyman Claus Bertino.  Ian Lewison, a novice at just 6-3-1, sprung a bit of an upset himself, stopping gargantuan German former fringe contender Timo Hoffmann in the first round, though it was a terrible stoppage by referee John Keane.  Nevertheless, Lewison did well to drop Hoffmann hard. 

 

In the second round, Harrison easily handled Rogan over the 3 round distance, leading to the conclusion that Rogan simply can’t begin to handle tall fighters.  In the other semi, Rossy eeked out a split decision over Lewison.  I had it a shutout for Lewison, but 2 of the 3 rounds were close. 

 

In the finals, Harrison simply finished off an already-tired Rossy, stopping him in the second round to win the tournament for the second time in his career.  I was reminded why I don’t bet on sports, as I only gave Harrison a 6% chance of winning in my preview last week.  Then again, if I’d have known he was going to draw Bertino, Rogan, and Rossy, I might have given him a significantly better shot.

 

Backtracking to Friday, one-loss prospect Manuel Charr- best known for his stoppage loss to Vitali Klitschko- was in what was shaping up as a barn-burner with one-loss and largely untested Turk Yakup Saglam.  Through two rounds, the two were just squaring up and throwing bombs, rock ’em sock ’em robots style, with each man giving as well as he received.  But the fight fell off the rails, as Saglam complained of a shoulder injury between rounds and retired in his corner.

 

Way back on Tuesday in Minsk, Belarus, Ondrej Pala of the Czech Republic (nominally a top 50 fighter), managed to win just 6 of 8 rounds against 6-3 novice Yuri Bihoutseu, though in Pala’s defense, Bihoutseu was the home fighter.

 

Prizefighter fails to make its mark on the rankings, contrary to my expectations.  The reason for this is that Harrison had a bit too easy a road.  Bertino did absolutely nothing for him.  Rogan helped, since his win over Sosnowski had made him a temporary fringe contender, but the Rossy win was tainted a bit by the fact that Rossy had probably deserved to lose to a journeyman in the semis.  That, combined with Harrison’s prior struggles in losing ugly stoppages to Davids Price and Haye, as well as a prior close loss to Rogan 4 years ago, conspire to leave him in the top 25, but outside the top 20.

 

Thompson’s TKO of Price gives the veteran a modest boost to #13.  It could have been better if I’d overrated Price as heavily as most did, but the fact is he had never proven himself to be anything better than a fringe contending prospect.  He looked scary against mid-level opposition and worse, but to view him as anything better than a borderline top 25 guy would involve a fair amount of projection, which I try to avoid here.

 

With the help of a pair of judges, Glazkov manages to stay put at #19, while Scott wins out in a close struggle for the #20 spot, ultimately displacing Bermane Stiverne, who had been on the inside for just 5 weeks since the last time he was forced out.  Stiverne owns a win over a #20 contender in Ray Austin, but that win is getting pretty old as his last major success, and he also suffered an embarrassing draw to complete nobody Charles Davis in ’09.  Scott has a win over a low-level gatekeeper in Bowie Tupuo to add to his fresh draw with #19 Glazkov.  It doesn’t hurt his case that he all but certainly won it.

 

Charr and Pala’s wins are nowhere near significant enough to matter.  Whew!  If I keep writing entries this long, I’m going to start feeling like an actual journalist!

 

Dan’s Top 20 (Weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: Wladimir Klitschko (192-405-405)
Last Fight: 11/10/2012- UD12 Mariusz Wach (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Wlad is now expecting to return on May 4 instead of April 6, with Italian fringe contender Francesco Pianeta being the leading contender.  He would then theoretically face Povetkin, but there seems to be 3-way drama between the WBA and the two fighters’ camps right now.
1) Vitali Klitschko (229-229-229)
Last Fight: 9/8/2012- TKO4 Manuel Charr (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
With 2013 in full swing, we’re still waiting on Vitali’s decision to fight on or retire.
2) David Haye (33-33-33)
Last Fight: 7/14/2012- TKO5 #6 Dereck Chisora
Next Fight: Unknown
Haye has indicated that a fight with Vitali may be the only fight that would lure him away from re-retiring. 
3) Steve Cunningham (10-10-10)
Last Fight: 12/22/2012- L (SD12) vs. #3 Tomasz Adamek (Robbery)
Next Fight: 4/20/2013- vs. #6 Tyson Fury
Adamek’s erratic behavior has yielded justice.  Cunningham beat Adamek, but was robbed.  Now he’ll fight Tyson Fury, with the winner to fight Kubrat Pulev for a mandatory shot at Wlad.  The fight will be at MSG and will be televised live in the afternoon by NBC.
4) Alexander Povetkin (33-279-279)
Last Fight: 9/29/2012- TKO2 Hasim Rahman (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
After failing to convince the WBA to deny Wlad a voluntary before fighting him, Povetkin and his team are now raising cain about the 75-25 split the WBA has set for the purse bid.  No word on whether he’ll stay busy in the meantime, as it would be hard to imagine the fight happening before August at the earliest.
5) Tomasz Adamek (10-149-149)
Last Fight: 12/22/2012- W (SD12)* vs. CW #4 Steve Cunningham (Robbery)
Next Fight: Unknown
Adamek is acting erratic lately, I think it’s fair to say.  First he gets busted drunk driving, and now he has turned down the Pulev shot that he “won” by “beating” Cunningham, claiming to have a much more lucrative offer to fight an unknown opponent in Poland- an offer that all the major Polish networks claim to have no part of.  He has also denied rumors that he might be fighting Artur Szpilka.
6) Tyson Fury (10-84-84)
Last Fight: 12/1/2012- UD12 Kevin Johnson (UNR)
Next Fight: 4/20/2013- vs. #3 Steve Cunningham
See Cunningham’s notes, above.
7) Eddie Chambers (10-37-37)
Last Fight: 6/16/2012- L(UD12) vs. #3 Tomasz Adamek
Next Fight: Unknown
Chambers appeared set to fight Lebedev at cruiserweight, but it now appears that Lebedev will fight Guillermo Jones, instead.
8) Kubrat Pulev (10-43-120)
Last Fight: 9/29/2012- KO11 Alexander Ustinov (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
With Adamek running scared, Pulev will reportedly defend his EBU title in March or April.  Next, he will likely fight the winner of Cunningham-Fury, with the winner becoming Wlad’s IBF mandatory.
9) Dereck Chisora (10-65-128)
Last Fight: 7/14/2012- L(TKO5) vs. David Haye (UNR)
Next Fight: 3/16/2013- vs. Unknown Opponent
Chisora is penciled in for the big Frank Warren event on 3/16 in London.  The only obstacles at this point are securing an opponent and getting his license back.
10) Johnathon Banks (10-15-15)
Last Fight: 11/17/2012- TKO2 #11 Seth Mitchell

Next Fight: Unknown
Banks broke his thumb in sparring, scuttling the Mitchell rematch.
11) Odlanier Solis (10-144)
Last Fight: 5/19/2012- UD12 Konstantin Airich (UNR)
Next Fight: 3/22/2013- vs. Unknown Opponent
Solis’ promoter- with whom he seems to have healed a major rift- says they’re looking at 3/22 for the big Cuban’s return, in Berlin.
12) Marco Huck (10-53)
Last Fight: 11/3/2012- W*(UD12) vs. CW #10 Firat Arslan (Robbery)
Next Fight: Unknown
Huck admits to not wanting the trilogy fight with Afolabi, but intends to go forward with it in late March or early April.  Since his last heavyweight fight was February 25, he will be removed when I publish my first update after that date, or my first update after that fight is announced at cruiser, whichever comes first.
13) Tony Thompson (1-144)
Last Fight: 2/23/2013- TKO2 David Price (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Thompson wants Fury- who recently signed to fight Cunningham.  Price has a rematch clause, but Price himself has indicated he may not be “crying for a rematch,” while Thompson says he wouldn’t consider it unless they paid him a lot better and came to the US.
14) Robert Helenius (1-144)
Last Fight: 11/10/2012- W*(UD10) vs. Sherman Williams (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Helenius was rumored for a March fight with Sprott, but no news since.
15) Alexander Dimitrenko (1-111)
Last Fight: 12/21/2012- UD8 Samir Kurtagic (UNR)
Next Fight: 3/9/2013- vs. Dzenan Hodzic (UNR)
Dimitrenko is scheduled to return on March 9 in Hamburg.  He will reportedly fight Dzenan Hodzic, a totally untested 4-0 Bosnian that has been inactive since 2008.
16) Chris Arreola (6-206)
Last Fight: 2/18/2012- KO1 Eric Molina (UNR)
Next Fight: 3/9/2013- vs. Bermane Stiverne (UNR)
Arreola-Stiverne has been delayed yet again- this time likely owing to Andre Ward’s injury.  It will now be March 9 in Costa Mesa, California.
17) Denis Boytsov (6-193)
Last Fight: 2/17/2013- UD8 Samir Kurtagic (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Boytsov appears to have won the battle of wills with Universum over whether he gets to fight or not.  Now the trick will be getting him in against worthwhile opposition.
18) Jean-Marc Mormeck (6-144)
Last Fight: 3/3/2012- L(TKO4) vs. Champ Wladimir Klitschko
Next Fight: Unknown
Mormeck will be removed on Monday, except in the unlikely event that he schedules a heavyweight fight this week.
19) Vyacheslav Glazkov (6-10)
Last Fight: 2/23/2013- Draw* (SD10) vs. Malik Scott (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Glazkov got the benefit of the doubt in every close round from two of the judges against Scott.  It was just about as close to a robbery as you can get without me calling it that. 
20) Malik Scott (1-1)
Last Fight: 2/23/2013- Draw* (SD10) vs. #19 Vyacheslav Glazkov
Next Fight: Unknown
Scott was the victim of a bad decision against Glazkov it’s fair to say, but I stop short of calling it a blatant robbery.  I do believe he won 8 of the 10 rounds, but he only won 4 of them with clarity.  By easing off the gas in the latter half of the fight, he gave the judges the opportunity to hand it to the house fighter, which 2 of them were all too happy to do.

 

THE WEEK AHEAD:  In an effort to prevent me from getting carpal tunnel, the division takes a much-deserved breather after the melee that was last week.  But I will have something to write about, since both #12 Marco Huck and #18 Jean-Marc Mormeck are essentially certain to be removed for inactivity next week.