Adrien Broner has lost his spot in the rankings, but probably won't be gone for long. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Adrien Broner and two other fighters have lost their spots in the rankings this week, all because they're simply not in those divisions anymore, but Broner at least shouldn't be expected to be gone for long.
The biggest change this week is that Adrien Broner, who was ranked No. 3, is out of the super featherweight rankings. He didn't make the weight, vacated his belt, and has made very clear that he's moving up in weight, so there's really no reason to keep him in. I'd made this decision on Friday, actually, when he missed the weight and said he was going up for sure.
I thought then that if Vicente Escobedo could turn in a good, competitive performance, he'd enter the top ten, probably. Escobedo was just barely outside for me going into the fight. But he was dominated in the fight, and it wasn't close at all.
Instead, 23-year-old Javier Fortuna debuts, and he's in at No. 9, leapfrogging Gary Buckland. I'd never really thought about a Fortuna-Buckland matchup before, but I couldn't see a way to pick Buckland over the explosive Dominican, who really might be the immediate future of this division.
Broner (24-0, 20 KO) is now unranked, which is the same as Brandon Rios and Robert Guerrero. Both are between divisions and haven't fought in the new one yet. If I were hazarding a guess on where I'd rank Broner at lightweight right now, I'd probably put him No. 4, with the asterisk that in terms of pure talent, I think he's a strong No. 1 with some room to spare. If there's nothing he likes at 135, though, I wouldn't be totally shocked to see him leap up to 140 and skip lightweight.
I've also decided to go ahead and knock Marcos Maidana out of the 140-pound rankings, because Maidana has given up whatever his WBA title was (regular, I think), his last fight was at 147 (and was a bad loss), and his next fight will be at 147, too, facing worn-out Jesus Soto Karass on September 15.
In at No. 10 this week is European champ Denis Shafikov. Other fighters considered for the open slot were Khabib Allakhverdiev, Mauricio Herrera, Mike Dallas Jr, Karim Mayfield, Ruslan Provodnikov, and DeMarcus "Chop Chop" Corley.
As for Maidana, I frankly do not expect him to become a factor at welterweight unless he winds up in the IBF title mix.
Another move that has nothing to do with in-ring results? Yes! Tomas Rojas is out, as he has fought three straight over the 115-pound limit, and it's been 11 months since he fought at 115, losing to Suriyan Sor Rungvisai. Rodel Mayol, who dropped out of flyweight (where he was holding) last week, is in at super flyweight, where he's actually been fighting. These weight classes can be a pain with this stuff -- guys take a lot of what other fighters might call "catchweight" bouts between their major fights.
This Week's Ranked Fighters in Action
Super Middleweight: No. 10 George Groves (14-0, 11 KO) vs Francisco Sierra (25-5-1, 22 KO)
Flyweight: No. 7 Edgar Sosa (45-7, 27 KO) vs Shigetaka Ikehara (22-3-2, 18 KO)
Junior Flyweight: No. 9 Luis Ceja (22-1-3, 18 KO) vs Ivan Meneses (17-10-1, 10 KO)
The Saturday welterweight fight between Robert Guerrero and Selcuk Aydin is also notable, and is really the biggest fight of the weekend. A win for Guerrero puts him in the mix for the back end of the top 10 at 147, especially if he's really impressive. A win for Aydin probably wouldn't propel him into the top ten, as Guerrero is 100% unproven at this weight.