Wednesday, May 31, 2023  |



Ratings: Campbell makes impact

Fighters Network

Nate Campbell’s failure to make the 135-pound weight limit for his lightweight title match with Ali Funeka and his subsequent victory over the talented South African on Saturday caused major repercussions within THE RING’s divisional ratings.

Campbell, who came in three pounds over the lightweight limit last Friday, announced before and after his hard-fought majority decision over Funeka that he would campaign in the 140-pound division immediately after the fight.

His move up in weight ends the debate among hardcore fans and some members of the boxing media as to who the true lightweight champion of the world is.

Some believed Campbell was the man at lightweight after he soundly outpointed Juan Diaz last March. Diaz, undefeated (33-0) at the time, held three major titles and was considered the best lightweight in the world. However, Campbell didn’t defend those titles last year for a variety of reasons – including Joan Guzman pulling out of a scheduled bout and a feud with promoter Don King.

Then, when Juan Manuel Marquez won the linear title and THE RING world championship by knocking out Joel Casamayor last September, a significant contingent of fans and sports media recognized the masterful Mexican veteran as the best lightweight.

A showdown between Marquez and Campbell would have solved any debate as to whom was the real lightweight champ, but Campbell’s promotional issues prevented that fight from being made late last year.

And with Campbell’s jump to the 140-pound division, the argument is now moot.

By beating Funeka, the WBO and IBF titles Campbell held going into Saturday’s fight became vacant, as is the WBC title. And unproven Paulus Moses is the WBA belt holder.

Thus, the winner of Marquez’s RING championship defense against Diaz later this month should be recognized by all as the king of the 135-pound division.

And what a deep and talented division it is, even with the departure of Campbell and a much-better known veteran.

Read on for this week’s RING Ratings updates:


Campbell (33-5-1, 25 knockouts), No. 1 last week, is out of the 135-pound ratings after losing his alphabet belts at the scales and then announcing his intention to fight at 140 pounds.

Manny Pacquiao (48-3-2, 36 KOs), No. 2 last week, also exits because he’s scheduled to challenge RING junior welterweight world champion Ricky Hatton and is unlikely to fight at 135 pounds again. (Pacquiao remains rated at welterweight, the division in which he fought his most recent bout.)

Diaz (34-1, 17 KOs), who is scheduled to challenge THE RING world lightweight champion Marquez (49-4-1, 36 KOs) on Feb. 28, jumps from No. 3 to No. 1.

Ex-champ Casamayor (36-4-1, 22 KOs) moves from No. 4 to No. 2, while the change at the top also boosts David Diaz (34-2-1, 17 KOs), Julio Diaz (36-4, 26 KOs) and Antonio Pitalua (46-3, 40 KOs) to Nos. 3, 4 and 5, respectively.

Funeka (30-1-2, 25 KOs) improves from No. 9 to No. 6 as a result of his strong showing against Campbell. Michael Katsidis (24-2, 20 KOs) goes from No. 8 to No. 7, and Yuri Romanov (21-2, 14 KOs) advances from No. 10 to No. 8.

The departure of Campbell and Pacquiao makes room for Colombia’s Breidis Prescott (20-0, 18 KOs), Amir Khan’s conqueror who is in action this Friday, and Anthony Peterson (28-0, 19 KOs) of Memphis, Tenn., to enter at No. 9 and No. 10, respectively.


Campbell, No. 1 at lightweight last week, moves into the 10th spot, replacing Juan Lazcano, who has been inactive since May 2008.

“Normally, when a rated fighter moves from one division to another, we do not rank him in his new division until he actually fights at that weight,” said Nigel Collins, editor of THE RING magazine. “But due to the fact that Campbell was officially a junior welter (137¾ pounds) for the Ali Funeka bout, won, and was previously rated so highly at 135, we decided, with input from The Ring Ratings Advisory Panel, to rank him in the 140-pound weight class.”


Even though Sergio Martinez (44-1-1, 24 KOs) and Kermit Cintron (30-2-1, 27 KOs) officially fought to a draw, it was a horrible decision. Martinez should have won. Therefore, Martinez advanced from No. 6 to No. 5, trading places with inactive Sergio Mora (21-1-1, 5 KOs), who hasn’t fought since losing the WBC super welterweight title to No. 1-rated Vernon Forrest (41-3, 29 KOs) last September.

Despite the gift draw, Cintron remains unranked because of the fact his promoter, Lou DiBella, said that Cintron would be dropping back down to welterweight.


Although THE RING fully supports the California State Athletic Commission’s revocation of Antonio Margarito’s boxing license, we have not removed him from THE RING welterweight ratings, where he is currently ranked No. 3.

Bottom line: Margarito (37-6, 26 KOs) has lost his California license, a ban that hopefully will be honored in other U.S. jurisdictions. He has not, however, been banned from boxing in other countries. Should he fight outside of the U.S. during the next 12 months, it would be ridiculous for THE RING to ignore those fights because the magazine ranks many boxers who are not licensed to box in the U.S.