Michael Rosenthal

Ring Ratings Update: A change in the heavyweight division

Dereck Chisora gave Vitali Klitschko his stiffest challenge in years Saturday in Germany, even if Klitschko’s shoulder injury surely contributed to Chisora’s relative success.

The Londoner is 1-3 in his last four fights but many believe he was robbed against Robert Helenius in December and applauded his effort against Klitschko.

Some members of the Ratings Advisory Panel were so impressed with Chisora that they believe he should replace Eddie Chambers (No. 4 last week) in the ratings.

Chambers has been removed because he hasn’t fought since he outpointed Derric Rossy on Feb. 11 of last year, more than a year ago, and doesn’t have a fight scheduled.

So who will replace Chambers?

Chisora (15-3, 9 knockouts) has proved in his past two fights that he’s a solid heavyweight, which is saying something in an era of extremely weak big men. He might very well be better than at least one or two heavyweights in the Top 10.

However, we can’t ignore a number of things. One is results: The fact is he has lost three of his past four fights. Another is that Klitschko in effect beat him fairly easily one-handed.

And how could we justify rating him above countryman Tyson Fury, who defeated a bloated Chisora by a one-sided decision only seven months ago?

We can’t. Thus, it is the unbeaten Fury (17-0, 12 KOs) who enters the ratings at No. 10. That pushes everyone from No. 5 to No. 10 last week up one notch each and leaves Chisora out of the mix.

For the record, we won’t be surprised if Chambers re-enters the ratings once he overcomes his injuries and gets back into the ring. The Philadelphian is relatively small but capable.


Light heavyweight: Gabriel Campillo (rated No. 9 last week) has been on the short end of poor decisions in his last three big fights, in which he is 0-2-1.

That includes an impressive performance against Tavoris Cloud (No. 2 last week), in which he survived two first-round knockdowns to outwork the IBF 175-pound titleholder only to lose a split decision.

Members of the Ratings Advisory Panel suggested that Campillo rise as high as No. 3, lest we give tacit approval of a broken-down (corrupt?) system.

In the end, THE RING Editorial Board agreed that Campillo deserved to rise in the ratings but only to No. 7, jumping over Beibut Shumenov (No. 7 last week) and Karo Murat (No. 8 last week), the other two fighters against whom Campillo was cheated.

Also, in light of a sub-par performance from Cloud, we’re dropping him one notch and lifting Chad Dawason (No. 3 last week) to No. 2.

Junior middleweight: Paul Williams (unrated last week) gave an impressive performance in his shutout decision over Nobuhiro Ishida on Saturday in Corpus Christi, Texas, one that merits his inclusion in the ratings.

However, a victory over a limited opponent only goes so far even with Williams’ track record. The former two-time welterweight titleholder must beat an elite 154-pounder to reach the summit of the division.

With that in mind, Williams enters at a respectable No. 7. That pushes those rated No. 7 to No. 9 down one position each and Delvin Rodriguez (No. 10 last week) out of the ratings.

Rodriguez, coming off a victory over Pawel Wolak in a rematch, is another fighter likely to re-enter the ratings with another big victory.

Featherweight: One member of the Ratings Advisory Panel suggested we consider removing Yuriorkis Gamboa (rated No. 1 last week) from the ratings because he plans to fight Brandon Rios at lightweight.

Plus, Ahmet Oener, Gamboa’s manager, told THE RING that it is unlikely the Cuban will fight again at 126 pounds.

However, we decided to wait until Gamboa actually steps into the ring because anything is possible until that takes place.

Junior flyweight: Gilberto Keb Baas (No. 1 last week) plummets to No. 10 after he was stopped in five rounds by Mario Rodriguez, Keb Baas’ second consecutive KO loss.

That pushes everyone rated No. 2 to No. 10 last week up one notch each and leaves room for Keb Baas at the bottom of the ratings.

We considered removing Keb Baas entirely but, in a thin division, there was no obvious candidate to supersede him. 

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