Thursday, July 18, 2024  |



Ring Ratings Update: Ring championship season continues

Lomachenko vs. Lopez is for the Ring Magazine lightweight championship.
Fighters Network

Last month featured three Ring Magazine title bouts and this month his highlighted by three more, starting with Saturday’s anticipated lightweight showdown between Vasiliy Lomachenko and Teofimo Lopez inside The Bubble at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas (ESPN, 4:30 p.m. PT/7:30 p.m. ET).

Lomachenko (14-1, 10 KOs), who holds the WBA, WBO and WBC Franchise belts, will attempt to make the fourth defense of the Ring Magazine title he won with a 10th-round stoppage of Jorge Linares in May 2018. Lopez (15-0, 12 KOs), who earned the IBF title with a second-round stoppage of Richard Commey last December, is The Ring’s No. 1-rated lightweight.

El Gallo, the Ring Magazine and WBC 115-pound champ.

On October 23, junior bantamweight champ Juan Francisco Estrada (40-3, 27 KOs) puts his Ring Magazine/WBC belts on the line against former WBC titleholder Carlos Cuadras (39-3-1, 27 KOs) in Mexico City (DAZN). It’s a rematch of Estrada’s razor-thin unanimous decision over Cuadras, The Ring’s No. 10-rated junior bantamweight, in 2017.

On October 31, Ring Magazine/WBA/IBF bantamweight champ Naoya Inoue (19-0, 16 KOs) will make his Las Vegas debut against former title challenger Jason Moloney, who is No. 6 in The Ring’s 118-pound rankings.


Last weekend a number of Ring-rated fighters were in action, which have created changes in the divisional rankings.

Former junior featherweight beltholder Emanuel Navarrete (32-1, 27 KOs) entered the featherweight rankings with an impressive unanimous decision over previously unbeaten contender Ruben Villa (18-1, 5 KOs).

Williams-Robinson. Photo courtesy of Queensberry Promotions

Welsh middleweight contender Liam Williams (23-2-1, 18 KOs) stayed busy – and sharp for a potential WBO title challenge – with a viscous body attack that overwhelmed Andrew Robinson (24-5-1, 7 KOs) in one round.

Japanese junior featherweight contender Hiroaki Teshigawara (22-2-2, 15 KOs) extended his current win-streak to 10 in a row with a six-round stoppage of Shingo Kawamura (16-6-4, 8 KOs).

German light heavyweight contender Dominic Boesel (30-2, 12 KOs) suffered a shocking third-round KO to veteran former title challenger Robin Krasniqi (51-6, 19 KOs).



Light heavyweight – Dominic Boesel drops out of the rankings. Umar Salamov (25-1, 19 KOs) enters at No. 10.

“Boesel was stunningly knocked cold by a long-time fringe contender; Joshua Buatsi had a good learning curve win over Marko Calic,” recapped panelist Anson Wainwright. “Boesel is out of the rankings but there’s no obvious choice to replace him. A lack of 175-pound resume hinders Gilberto Ramirez, Krasniqi is more of a gatekeeper, Joshua Buatsi is still a little green. I mentioned Fanlong Meng previously, but lack of activity doesn’t help. I would bring in Umar Salamov at No. 10. His upcoming fight with Maxim Vlasov will provide a solid No. 10.”

Associate Editor Tom Gray and panelists Michael Montero and Adam Abramoqitz agreed with Salamov entering the rankings.

Panelists Martin Mulcahey and Diego Morilla preferred to bring in Buatsi at No. 10.

“I like Joshua Buatsi and fighting through a bad eye was good experience,” said Mulcahey. “I prefer Buatsi over Umar Salamov, better upside and superior amateur resume as well. Bring in Salamov if he wins next fight against Vlasov.”

Super middleweight – David Lemieux (42-4, 35 KOs) remains at No. 9 following a fifth-round KO of Francy Nteu (17-4, 4 KOs).

Middleweight – Liam Williams advances one spot to No. 9. Zhanibek Alimkhanuly (9-0, 5 KOs) enters at No. 10 following his frightening second round KO of Gonzalo Coria (16-4, 6 KOs), bumping Maciej Sulecki out of the ratings.

Said Wainwright: “I wouldn’t mind seeing Williams move up one place and Alimkhanuly coming in. (I understand that) neither beat an opponent to make that move. However, it was more the way they did it. (I suggest) Sulecki dropping out for now. That look gives the division a tip of the hat to ‘now’ rather than the solid but unspectacular Sulecki.”

Said Abramowitz: “I wouldn’t bring in either guy at 160. As you pointed out, those opponents shouldn’t warrant additional credit.”

Abramowitz was outvoted by Gray, Montero, Mulcahey and Morilla, who added: “Alimkhanuly looked great, and Coria was a tough customer with a deceptive record, a veteran of many wars down here in Argentina. I see no problem promoting him at No. 10.”

Featherweight – Emanuel Navarrete enters the ratings at No. 5. Ruben Villa drops to No. 10.

Ruben Villa could not offset Emanuel Navarrete’s power (Photo by Mikey Williams/Top Rank)

“Emanuel Navarrete dropped and Ruben Villa twice en route to winning the vacant WBO title by unanimous decision,” Wainwright recapped. “He won the decision by two points on two of the cards and four on the other, meaning those knockdowns were pivotal. Looked like he was very worthy of the win regardless in my eyes. Nice win for Navarrete who I would bring in at No. 5. Neither (No. 6 Mark) Magsayo or King Tug (No. 7 Tugstsogt Nyambayar) have been impressive in recent weeks. Villa to drop to No. 10.”

Stated Abramowitz: “I would bring Navarrete in at No. 4 at 126.”

Gray, Montero, Morilla and Mulcahey were OK with Navarrete at No. 5.

“No. 5 is good place (for Navarrete), I think (No. 4 Kid) Galahad still has promise and was beaten by future HOF guy,” said Mulcahey.

Junior featherweight – Hiroaki Teshigawara advances one spot, from No. 8 to No. 7. Angelo Leo is pushed from No. 7 to No. 6. Tomoki Kameda drops from No. 6 to No. 8.

“Teshigawara is on a really good run,” said Wainwright. “I’d like to see Leo move to No. 6, Teshigawara to No. 7 and Kameda to drop to No. 8.”



Email Fischer at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter and IG at @dougiefischer, and join him, Tom Loeffler, Coach Schwartz and friends via Tom’s Periscope every Sunday.