THE RING Rankings Update
Vitali Klitschko’s dominating technical knockout of Juan Carlos Gomez and Sultan Ibragimov’s inactivity made room for two new entrants in THE RING’s heavyweight rankings: Chris Arreola and David Haye.
The undefeated Southern California slugger and the dynamic-punching former cruiserweight champ from England add new blood to THE RING’s heavyweight Top 10 and could inject much-needed excitement into the division.
Another young gun, Eddie Chambers, could break into THE RING’s heavyweight rankings if he defeats Samuel Peter in an ESPN2-televised crossroads match from Los Angeles this Friday.
Peter (30-2, 23 knockouts) is THE RING’s No. 6-rated heavyweight, but the former WBC titleholder’s ranking is on thin ice.
Peter was thoroughly dominated last October by Klitschko, who had been out of the ring for nearly four years, en route to an eight-round technical stoppage.
Prior to that embarrassingly one-sided loss, Peter looked slow and sloppy in registering a sixth-round knockout of Oleg Maskaev to win the WBC belt. The Las Vegas-based Nigerian had a couple of wobbly moments in stopping the aging, shopworn beltholder. And prior to his title-winning effort Peter was sent to the canvas three times in a decision victory over fringe contender Jameel McCline.
Chambers, an undersized but nimble and gutsy sharp-shooter, won his first 30 pro bouts before he was out-pointed by THE RING’s No. 4-rated heavyweight, Alexander Povetkin, last January.
Chambers (33-1, 18 KOs) was competitive with Povetkin over the first half of the HBO-televised bout, but the former world amateur and Olympic champ out-hustled the 26-year-old Philadelphian down the stretch. Prior to his only loss, Chambers beat prospect Derrick Rossy, fringe contender Dominic Guinn and former title challenger Calvin Brock in consecutive bouts. He’s won three in a row since the Povetkin fight.
“This Friday’s bout between Sam Peter and Eddie Chambers could prompt another shakeup in the heavyweight division,” said Nigel Collins, editor of THE RING magazine. “Even though he advanced this week due to attrition, Peter could very well be dropped, following 203 consecutive weeks in the ratings, if he loses to Chambers.”
Here is a look at how last week’s ring action affected THE RING Ratings in each division:
Former WBO titleholder Ibragimov (No. 6 last week), out of the ring since his boring decision loss to Wladimir Klitschko last February, exits due to inactivity. Gomez (No. 9 last week) is also gone due to his TKO loss to Vitali Klitschko (No. 2).
The departures of Ibragimov and Gomez move Samuel Peter from No. 7 to No. 6, Oleg Maskaev from No. 8 to No. 7, and Alexander Dimitrenko from No. 10 to No. 8. The two open spots were filled by Arreloa at No. 9 and Haye at No. 10.
Bernard Dunne returns to the ratings at No. 7 thanks to his sensational win over Ricardo Cordoba, who slips from No. 7 to No. 10. Dunne’s inclusion pushed out Toshiaki Nishioka (No. 10 last week).
“Even though Cordoba was stopped in the 11th round, he did have Dunne down twice in a thrilling, give-and-take fight, so we felt his performance was strong enough to retain a Top-10 ranking despite the loss,” Collins said.
Wladimir Klitschko, THE RING’s No. 1-rated heavyweight, reached 200 consecutive weeks in the rankings this week.
Klitschko (52-3, 46 KOs) has won 10 in a row since his KO loss to Lamon Brewster in 2004, a streak that includes five RING-rated contenders and a revenge KO victory over Brewster.
During that four-year span, Klitschko won the IBF title by stopping Chris Byrd and picked up the WBO belt by out-pointing Ibragimov. He also defeated four unbeaten fighters, including Ibragimov (22-0-1), Calvin Brock (29-0) and Peter (24-0).