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Boxing Rankings (March 7, 2022): Chocolatito Gonzalez, Jose Ramirez, more

Chocolatito Gonzalez and Jose Ramirez stayed strong, plus more notes in this week’s boxing rankings update.

Chocolatito Gonzalez is still fighting an elite level in his mid-30s
Chocolatito Gonzalez is still fighting an elite level in his mid-30s
Ed Mulholland/Matchroom

Rankings go up on Mondays, but we won’t have an update next week, so the next update will come on March 21.

Ranked fights the next two weeks:

  • Welterweight: (4) Vergil Ortiz Jr vs Michael McKinson, Mar. 19
  • Welterweight: (7) David Avanesyan vs Oskari Metz, Mar. 19
  • Junior Welterweight: (3) Regis Prograis vs Tyrone McKenna, Mar. 19
  • Junior Welterweight: (5) Jose Zepeda vs Francisco Perez, Mar. 19
  • Featherweight: (6) Leigh Wood vs Michael Conlan, Mar. 12
  • Flyweight: (1) Sunny Edwards vs Muhammad Waseem, Mar. 19
  • Junior Flyweight: (3) Masamichi Yabuki vs (5) Kenshiro Teraji, Mar. 19

Upcoming Fights: (1) Tyson Fury vs (6) Dillian Whyte, Apr. 23 ... (2) Oleksandr Usyk vs (4) Anthony Joshua, TBA


Upcoming Fights: (1) Mairis Briedis vs Jai Opetaia, May 11


Upcoming Fights: (2) Dmitry Bivol vs Canelo Alvarez, May 7


Upcoming Fights: (1) Canelo Alvarez vs Dmitry Bivol [light heavyweight], May 7 ... (2) David Benavidez vs David Lemieux, May 21 ... (9) Zach Parker vs Demetrius Andrade, TBA


Upcoming Fights: (1) Gennadiy Golovkin vs (4) Ryota Murata, Apr. 9 ... (3) Demetrius Andrade vs Zach Parker [super middleweight], TBA


Upcoming Fights: (10) Magomed Kurbanov vs Patrick Teixeira, Mar. 26 ... (5) Liam Smith vs Jessie Vargas, Apr. 30 ... (1) Jermell Charlo vs (1) Brian Castano, May 14


Upcoming Fights: (4) Vergil Ortiz Jr vs Michael McKinson, Mar. 19 ... (7) David Avanesyan vs Oskari Metz, Mar. 19 ... (1) Errol Spence Jr vs (3) Yordenis Ugas, Apr. 16 ... (8) Radzhab Butaev vs Eimantas Stanionis, Apr. 16 ... (9) Conor Benn vs TBA, Apr. 16 ... (5) Jaron Ennis vs Custio Clayton, May 21


Notes: Jose Ramirez’s win over Jose Pedraza keeps him sitting tight at No. 4, though you could argue him at No. 3 or even No. 2 if you want. The Catterall situation is a unique one; the Josh Taylor that fought Catterall may likely have lost to Ramirez, or Prograis, or Zepeda, or even Pedraza, but he also might have received the same favorable decision that caused a ton of controversy.

Ramirez’s win wasn’t flashy, wasn’t highlight reel or super-duper impressive, but it was a rock solid victory over a good opponent, when Ramirez could have sold tickets in Fresno and headlined ESPN+ with a lesser opponent as a bounce-back fight. Pedraza slips to No. 9; he’s still a good fighter and I’d give him plenty of chance to beat Akhmedov, Martin, Matias, or Love, some more than others due to style matchups and all that.

Upcoming Fights: (3) Regis Prograis vs Tyrone McKenna, Mar. 19 ... (5) Jose Zepeda vs Francisco Perez, Mar. 19


Upcoming Fights: (6) Ryan Garcia vs Emmanuel Tagoe, Apr. 9 ... (10) Isaac Cruz vs Yuriorkis Gamboa, Apr. 16 ... (1) George Kambosos Jr vs TBA, June 5


Notes: Miguel Berchelt is officially moving to lightweight on March 26, so he’s out now. Zelfa Barrett comes in; like most situations of this sort, it’s not an easy choice. You could go with several others. Barrett does have the one loss to Ronnie Clark, but that was four years ago.

Upcoming Fights: (1) Oscar Valdez vs (2) Shakur Stevenson, Apr. 30


Notes: Solid wins for Joet Gonzalez and Mauricio Lara on the weekend, with Gonzalez stopping Jeo Santisima in a pretty good fight on Friday, and Lara winning a three-round war with Emilio Sanchez on Saturday. Gonzalez will remain a decent contender, and if Navarrete moves to 130, which may be on the table, then he could find himself with another crack at the WBO belt. Lara is going to be dangerous against anyone with his heavy hands, but he’s also vulnerable, which means he’s exciting. Harder punchers than Josh Warrington and Sanchez may be real trouble for him, but he can crack and he’s great to watch.

Upcoming Fights: (6) Leigh Wood vs Michael Conlan, Mar. 12 ... (5) Kiko Martinez vs (7) Josh Warrington, Mar. 26


Upcoming Fights: (1) Murodjon Akhmadaliev vs (8) Ronny Rios, TBA


Upcoming Fights: (3) John Riel Casimero vs Paul Butler, Apr. 22


Notes: Chocolatito did it again, thoroughly out-classing flyweight titleholder Julio Cesar Martinez. The question now is what’s next for the legend, who turns 35 soon. A third fight with Juan Francisco Estrada is still, in my opinion, the best fight for him. But a fight with Kazuto Ioka would also be very interesting, and he’s talked about moving to bantamweight, too, chasing a world title in another division. I think that last idea is a bad idea, but hey, he’s earned the benefit of the doubt. He’s a true generational great, an all-timer, and you could probably have him ranked higher, but the same was true before. To me, he does have the legitimate, clear loss to Rungvisai, and Estrada and Ioka are also great fighters. So it’s a tough top four, unlike some top fours.

Upcoming Fights: TBA


Notes: Martinez’s loss came a division up, yes, but I also think this new top three would have been a fair order a week ago; there’s not a lot separating what Edwards, Nakatani, and Martinez have done so far, Martinez just got up there first. If I had to pick who has the best win at 112, I’d say Sunny’s win over Moruti Mthalane is the best, and Nakatani has two good wins over Acosta and Magramo. This is nothing against Martinez, really, but he lost a fight and I think a lot of exploitable flaws showed in that one. It’s up to him to get better, more well-rounded, a little sharper, and I do believe both Edwards and Nakatani would be hard fights for Martinez. Edwards isn’t a puncher, but that dude is going to be really hard for anyone to beat. He’s legitimately extremely crafty and smart, just does what he does incredibly well. But it’s a good top three. Any matchup between them would be nice.

Upcoming Fights: (1) Sunny Edwards vs Muhammad Waseem, Mar. 19


Upcoming Fights: (3) Masamichi Yabuki vs (5) Kenshiro Teraji, Mar. 19


Upcoming Fights: (5) Ginjiro Shigeoka vs Tatsuro Nakashima, Mar. 27 ... (2) Petchmanee CP Freshmart vs (3) Wanheng Menayothin, Mar. 29 ... (4) Masataka Taniguchi vs Kai Ishizawa, Apr. 22


Upcoming Fights: (5) Errol Spence Jr vs Yordenis Ugas, Apr. 16 ... (8) Tyson Fury vs Dillian Whyte, Apr. 23 ... (1) Canelo Alvarez vs Dmitry Bivol, May 7 ... (10) George Kambosos Jr vs TBA, June 5 ... (2) Oleksandr Usyk vs Anthony Joshua, TBA


Upcoming Fights: (8) Savannah Marshall vs Femke Hermans, Apr. 2 ... (5) Mikaela Mayer vs Jennifer Han, Apr. 9 ... (1) Katie Taylor vs (3) Amanda Serrano, Apr. 30 ... (10) Chantelle Cameron vs Kali Reis, TBA