“Heavyweight Division taking a standing 8 count”

01.08.05 - By Mike Casile “The Philadelphia Boxing Report.” Seems like today, most commentators and boxing analyst, spend more time trying to convince us, or them selves, that the heavy weight division is alive and kicking. The fact of the matter is that if the Heavyweight division was a fight, it would have been counted out years ago. In the past, the heavyweight title was a coveted position of prominence, when I speak of the Heavyweight division I am speaking of the WBC, the IBF, and the WBA respectively. Now it seems like it’s used about as much toilet paper, and treated the same way. This did not start with Lennox Lewis retiring; it just became more accentuated by it. Remember Lewis is the guy who pulled his title belt from the trash, and Roy Jones left his belt to be claimed by lesser men, because the money was there to fight Antonio Tarver. Look at the current line up of champions, you have Vitali Klitschko WBC champion. He defeated powerhouse fighters like Danny Williams, and Corrie Sanders, to obtain his coveted title.

Then we have to look at Chris Cornelius "Rapid-fire" Byrd. The IBF champion, who defeated Evander Holyfield to obtain his honor, Yes, I said Evander Holyfield.

Then we have the quiet man, WBA heavyweight champion, John Ruiz. He actually fought a blown up middleweight, James Toney and lost, but since Toney failed a drug test after the fight, testing positive for the steroid known as Nandrolone, the WBA actually gave Ruiz the belt back.

And then, the Ruiz camp, the “Quiet Mans” camp, incredibly held a press conference to proclaim the greatness of Ruiz. This is without a doubt the saddest group of champions in the history of the heavyweight division. This is not a slam session against these three fighters. They are good fighters, with professional grade skills, but legitamte world champions? Where are all the good young heavyweights hiding? Let’s look at the rankings. The IBF has no one rated and #1 or #2, and Davarryl Williamson ranked 3rd. Williamson is the guy that lost to Joe Mesi in the first round on the “night of the young heavyweights. The WBA has again, no one ranked at the #1 spot, but little know european fighter Nicolay Valuev ranked number #2, who is more of a side show than a fighter. Then we have the coveted WBC rankings. They have Hasim Rahman #1, Monte Barrett #2, and Sinan Samil Sam #3. Sinan knocked out Danny Williams in Berlin, and now will fight the number #4 fighter in the world Sam Peter, for the number one spot on the WBC rankings. Out of the three main divisions, there is only one fighter ranked number one in the world, and that is Hasim Rahman.

Rahman is not even ranked in the IBF top ten, and did not win a fight in four attempts from 2001 to 2003. Should we be looking at the heavyweight fighters? Or should we be looking at the men preparing the ratings, either way, if something isnt done soon, you may see a Riddick Bowe, Evander Holyfield rematch for the title.

Article posted on 01.08.2005

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