The most-significant question in this week’s Ring Ratings Update was what to do about Tomasz Adamek, the No. 3 heavyweight going into Saturday.
Normally a fighter who takes the kind of beating Adamek took from No. 1 Vitali Klitschko en route to a 10th-round knockout in Poland would drop at least a few notches. However, this situation was unusual.
Consider that the two heavyweights rated immediately below him performed no better against Wladimir Klitschko recently than Adamek did against Vitali. No. 4 David Haye barely showed up against the younger brother when they met on July 2, losing a one-sided decision. No. 5 Eddie Chambers was stopped in the 12th round and badly hurt in March of last year, although the Philadelphian bounced back with a unanimous decision over Derric Rossy in February.
And those farther down – including No. 6 Robert Helenius, No. 7 Alexander Dimitrenko and No. 8 Dennis Boytsov – haven’t done enough to leapfrog the top contenders.
Thus, Adamek remains at No. 3, a notch below unbeaten Russian Alexander Povetkin, who now might have to be seen as the most-legitimate challenger to the seemingly invincible Ukrainians.
Another situation that merited some thought was that of Irishman Paul McCloskey, who narrowly outpointed Breidis Prescott (Amir Khan’s conqueror) on Saturday in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
A few members of the Ring Advisory Panel suggested that McCloskey should enter the junior welterweight ratings, which probably would’ve pushed No. 10 Mike Alvarado out. However, others had the opposite opinion because of the controversial nature of the decision.
The Ring Editorial Board agreed with the latter group and left the 140-pound ratings as they were.
RING RATINGS UPDATE
Vitali Klitschko remains at No. 1, below his brother, after his 11th consecutive victory (including nine knockouts). Adamek remains at No. 3 because of the relatively weak contenders below him.
No. 8 Ola Afolabi easily outpointed Lukasz Rusiewicz in a stay-busy fight on the Klitschko-Adamek card. He retains his rating.
Juan Carlos Salgado (No. 5 last week) defeated Argenis Mendez (No. 8 last week) to win the vacant IBF 130-pound belt Saturday in Mexico. Salgado switches positions after his victory with Roman Martinez (No. 4 last week), who hasn’t fought since he lost his WBO junior lightweight title to Ricky Burns in September of last year.
Martinez remains in the ratings even though he’s been inactive for more than year because he has a fight scheduled for Oct. 1.
Mendez drops to No. 10.
Daniel Ponce de Leon (No. 5 last week) was in a similar situation to that of Adamek after losing a truncated (and one-sided) eight-round decision to No. 1 Yuriorkis Gamboa on Saturday. De Leon also has lost consecutive fights, having been narrowly outpointed by hot prospect Adrien Broner in March.
Thus, a few members of the advisory panel suggested that de Leon be dropped one or two spots.
However, de Leon remains at No. 5 for two reasons. One, he was competitive in both his losses. Some believed he did enough to beat Broner and the fight with Gamboa was closer than the scores (80-72, 80-72, 79-73) indicate. And, two, the fighter below him, Cristobal Cruz, is 0-1-2 in his last three fights.
Of course, Gamboa retains the No. 1 position.
Milan Melindo (No. 8 last week) stopped former title challenger Francisco Rosas in the 10th round on Saturday. He swaps places with Rocky Fuentes (No. 7 last week) because he has faced better opposition.
Michael Rosenthal can be reached at email@example.com