RING Ratings update: Minor changes on a busy weekend
Fairly busy weekend, very little movement in the RING Ratings.
Let’s start with the biggest fight, Tim Bradley’s ninth-round knockout of Brandon Rios on Saturday in Las Vegas. Bradley, our No. 4 welterweight, dominated the former lightweight titleholder before finishing him off with body shots.
The Ratings Panel and Editorial Board discussed the possibility of moving Bradley above No. 3 Amir Khan but decided against it because of Khan’s five-fight winning streak and the limited threat posed by the unrated Rios, who announced his retirement after the fight.
So there was no movement at 147 pounds.
Now cruiserweight. Dmitry Kudryashov (No. 8 last week) and Rakhim Chakhkiev (No. 10 last week) were stopped by unrated Olanrewaju Durodola and Ola Afolabi, respectively, on Wednesday in Russia. Thus, they were dropped from the ratings and Oleksandr Usyk (No. 9 last week) moved up one spot.
That left two voids at the bottom of the Top 10, which were filled by Victor Ramirez at No. 9 and Afolabi at No. 10.
Those choices were somewhat complicated given that Durodola stopped a rated fighter and Ramirez is coming off a draw with Ovill McKenzie. We went with Ramirez and Afolabi over Durodola because Durodola doesn’t have a strong overall resume. And we went with Ramirez over Afolabi because the Argentine clearly outpointed Afolabi in April.
Three other cruiserweights also held their positions. Denis Lebedev (No. 2 last week) stopped unrated Lateef Kayode in eight rounds on the Povetkin-Wach card; Firat Arslan (No. 6 last week) KO’d unrated Paata Aduashvili in two rounds Saturday in Germany; and Youri Kalenga (No. 7 last week) knocked out unrated Roberto Bolonti in nine rounds on the Ruslan Provodnikov-Jesus Rodriguez card Saturday in Monaco.
The only other movement took place at super middleweight, at which unbeaten Callum Smith (No. 10 last week) stopped previously undefeated Rocky Fielding in one round Saturday in Liverpool, England. As a result, he swaps places with Robert Stieglitz (No. 9 last week). Stieglitz was stopped by Arthur Abraham in July and is only 2-2-1 in his last five fights.
In other divisions:
Heavyweight: Alexander Povetkin (No. 1 last week) retains his position after stopping unrated Mariusz Wach in 12 rounds Wednesday in Russia.
Junior welterweight: Ruslan Provodnikov (No. 3 last week) stays put after knocking out unrated Jesus Rodriguez in four rounds on Saturday in Monaco.
Featherweight: Vasyl Lomachenko (No. 2 last week) stopped unrated and obscure Romulo Koasicha in 10 rounds on the Bradley-Rios card. The Ratings Panel and Editorial Board considered moving Lomachenko above No. 1 Nicholas Walters because Walters evidently plans to campaign at junior lightweight going forward.
We decided to wait until Walters actually steps into the ring to face Jason Sosa at 130 pounds on Dec. 19 before making a final determination. Plus, a victory over Koasicha doesn’t carry much weight.