January: Carlos Tamara TKO12 Brian Viloria (25%)
February: Antonio Escalante UD10 Mickey Roman (48%)
March: Andre Dirrell DQ10 Arthur Abraham (48%)
April: Mikkel Kessler UD12 Carl Froch (65%)
May: Yonnhy Perez D12 Abner Mares (30%)
June: Miguel Cotto TKO9 Yuri Foreman (42%)
July: Dmitry Pirog TKO5 Daniel Jacobs (43%)
August: Giovanni Segura KO8 Ivan Calderon (44%)
September: Ricky Burns UD12 Roman Martinez (42%)
The worst month of the year in boxing is finally over, but while pickings were slim on American telecasts, pickings are even slimmer for this poll.
Hugo Cazares TKO9 Alberto Rossel - On paper, this looked like a nothing defense, but Cazares is quickly becoming a must-watch fighter who lets his fights get exciting even when they don't need to be. Rossel, a Peruvian journeyman, started a bit slow but then became aggressive, pressing forward. Cazares kept countering Rossel and occasionally mixing it up with Rossel, and for a number of rounds, no matter how hard Rossel got tagged, he'd immediately come back with more punches in a gritty performance. Youtube starts here.
Lucian Bute KO9 Jesse Brinkley - This was the closest thing to an American-televised fight this month that actually looked like a fight. Brinkley was tough and even managed to win a round or two against Bute, who had an off night, but tough isn't enough against a fighter as talented as Bute. Bute knocked down Brinkley in the fifth, who beat the "over" because he spit out his mouthpiece and had his tape re-wrapped before resuming action, but it didn't take too long before Brinkley tasted the canvas again and the fight was stopped. Youtube starts here.
Toshiaki Nishioka UD12 Rendall Munroe - This one wasn't particularly close either, but the boxing binman charged hard early and gave it his all late. Unfortunately, the speed and power of Nishioka was just too much, and the Japanese fighter was able to emerge victorious by a wide margin. Youtube starts here.
Jesus Gelez MD12 Omar Soto - The first of two pretty decent fights at last weekend's WBO convention. Soto took the fight on less than a week's notice, but put up a spirited challenge, trying to technically outbox Gelez. Gelez fought more aggressively and seemed to land the harder punches, but about once a round, the two would really start to mix things up and exchange punches in the middle of the ring. The last few rounds here.
Raul Garcia SD12 Luis De La Rosa - Garcia barely outlasted De La Rosa in a battle of attrition that headlined the final Top Rank Live of the month. The two stayed inside and both did considerable attacking, although Garcia seemed to have just a little bit more left than his Colombian opponent and pulled off the interim title win on away turf.
Honorable mentions: Pongsaklek Wonjongkam UD12 Suriyan Por Chokchai (which I've read was a great fight, but haven't seen a copy of anywhere), Hassan N'Dam N'Jikam UD12 Advantil Khurtsidze (same), Nilson Tapia UD10 Jorge Sebastian Heiland, Juan Antonio Rodriguez KO3 Juan Castaneda, Daniel Geale TKO12 Roman Karmazin.