You don't get a whole lot of weekends like this past weekend, and this is about as shaken-up as rankings are going to get over just a couple of days. There's plenty to talk about this weekend, so let's jump right into it.
Last Monday, Victor Ortiz was ranked No. 7 at junior welterweight. This week, he jumps all the way to No. 4 at welterweight after defeating previously third-ranked Andre Berto. Berto slips down to fifth, with Shane Mosley moving up a spot to No. 3. It's likely that Mosley is that high temporarily as he faces divisional top dog Manny Pacquiao on May 7, but with the upsets and surprises that have been rolling in lately, Sugar Shane might look a slightly less awful bet in that fight than he did before. Not that that's saying a ton.
Ortiz looks like the real deal at 147 pounds. He's thick, strong, and powerful. He maintained his power, and he looked newly determined. It was a return to the old, aggressive Ortiz after some tentative performances following his 2009 loss to Marcos Maidana. That guy is going to get knocked down, is going to get hurt sometimes, and is going to provide exciting fights. But if that newfound grit and resolve is the real deal, he's going to be tough to handle.
Berto now faces adversity for the first time in his career, and what he does next will say plenty about him. He's got a lot to address, and a bounce-back fight shouldn't be unexpected. It's unlikely to be welcome by boxing fans, though, and you have to wonder if HBO is in the market for an easy Berto rebound.
Out of the rankings is Joshua Clottey, previously ranked fifth. He has been inactive since March 13, 2010, but I gave him a 30-day extension when a fight of his fell through. Since he's been silent yet again, he's out. Oh well. Coming soon, Floyd Mayweather Jr. (#2) will be out in the May 2 edition of the rankings unless he signs a fight by then.
After the jump: Updates at junior welterweight, featherweight, and super bantamweight.
With Ortiz moving up in weight, an opening was created. I'll get to that in a minute, after I address Khan-McCloskey.
Khan maintains his spot at No. 2 right, behind Timothy Bradley. Those two are rumored to be fighting on July 23, which is the last must-have fight in a division that has seen its top fighters take each other on for a while now, a refreshing change of pace from most of these sets of fighters.
As for McCloskey, he was ranked 10th last week. I actually moved him up to ninth this week. That might seem odd since he didn't win one of his six rounds against Khan, but here's the thing. I still think he's at least just as good a fighter with just as good a résumé as anyone I could have slotted in to replace him. What does losing wide to Khan tell me that I didn't know last week? Nothing. I expected he'd lose badly to Khan, and he did. I also expect Khan would easily defeat any of those I could have put in his place. I thought McCloskey deserved the spot in the rankings last week, and losing to the No. 2 man in the division does not change my mind. So despite the one-sided loss, McCloskey moves up because of Ortiz's exit.
Now, in at No. 10: Erik Morales. This is a placeholder position as much as anything. Morales, thanks to his competitive loss to Marcos Maidana (#3) was in the running and I chose him to inherit the open spot -- for now. Also in the running were Victor Cayo, Julio Diaz, Josesito Lopez, and Ajose Olusegun. Cayo fights 4/29 against Lamont Peterson (#6). Diaz faces Kendall Holt on May 13 in a fight that could get the winner into the top ten. And Lopez faces Steve Upsher Chambers on May 27. I don't truly believe in Morales as the holder of the spot any more than the others in the running (well, I'm not a believer in Olusegun, but some are), but the rest will have their say soon enough. For now, Morales just made the most sense, but he's likely to be a short termer.
Obviously, there's a new No. 1. Yuriorkis Gamboa moves up to the top spot, with Chris John jumping up a spot to the No. 2 position. Former top dog Juan Manuel Lopez drops to fourth spot, just behind the man who defeated him on Saturday, Orlando Salido, who jumps up from No. 8 to No. 3. Previously Nos. 4-7, the set of Rafael Marquez, Celestino Caballero, Daniel Ponce de Leon and Jhonny Gonzalez move down a notch each. Nos. 9 and 10 (Mikey Garcia and Jonathan Victor Barros) stay the same.
We could well see Gamboa-John next for those two, but time will tell. Top Rank will have other options if they've decided that compensating John won't be worth it. John can make his own money against mediocre opposition at home in Indonesia, as he's proven time and time again in the past.
Most seem to be immediately expecting a Salido-Lopez rematch, but don't count me in as totally sure about that. Not because I don't think Lopez would fight him, but Juanma might need to move up in weight sooner than later. If he can make 126 still, but he (or the "sanctioning" body) doesn't want a rematch with Salido, and he doesn't want to go to Gamboa now, one idea I'd like to see would be an all-Puerto Rico grudge match with Wilfredo Vazquez Jr., the super bantamweight standout who is being served Jorge Arce on a silver platter on the Pacquiao-Mosley undercard. The two are not friendly, shall we say.
Just a minor shift, as I switched Guillermo Rigondeaux to No. 6 and Rendall Munroe to No. 7. The Munroe who fought this Saturday looked a little less than stellar.