What to make of the current light heavyweight division in boxing? You have the ageless wonder, and two of the hardest hitters in the business, along with some respected former titlist and other tough contenders. Take a look at boxing’s top 10 light heavyweight division rankings.
Light heavyweight division rankings (175 lbs.) last updated October 2015
Light Heavyweight Division Champion:
- Record: 28-0-1, 25 KOs
- Next Fight: TBD
Enough is enough, and it was time that Stevenson was stripped and Kovalev was crowned. Krusher has bulldozed his way through the entire division. Ask Gabriel Campillo or Nathan Cleverly how it feels to face Krusher. Shined under the bright lights by taking it to the nearly 50-year-old Hopkins, and then continued his run by agreeing to face Jean Pascal, in Pascal’s backyard. He punished his top available challenger, surviving a few tough moments along the way in which he showed his own heart and chin, too. With his mandatory defense out of the way, Andre Ward could be next.
Top 10 Light Heavyweight Contenders
- Adonis Stevenson Stevenson had been the lineal champion thanks to his brutal KO victory over the previous reigning champ, Chad Dawson. But a lack of quality opposition for a string of fights has ended his reign. It’s been a long time since we gushed at how working with the late Emmanuel Steward, Superman took major strides in his game, thrashing Jesus Gonzales and Don George in 2012, and then Tavoris Cloud and Tony Bellew. Didn’t impress with his win over Andrzej Fonfara, either. Fought Sakio Bika, making his 175 lbs debut. Tommy Karpency is next, and Superman’s time at the top came to a close.
- Andre Ward – The SOG seems intent on officially moving up to 175 lbs. So we’ve annexed him from our super middleweight division rankings, and inserted him here at light heavyweight. His return bout was at a catchweight above super middleweight, too, so technically he’s seen action in the division. We’ll see what Ward gets into next.
- Andrzej Fonfara – Nobody is going to mistake Fonfara for the best fighter in the division, but he’s earned himself a position in the top 10 following his come from behind stoppage against Gabriel Campillo. He has continued to develop and work on his craft to get himself into position to challenge Adonis Stevenson, and while he came up short, he certainly won himself some fans and respect with a ton of heart and grit in that fight. Took it to Julio Cesar Chavez Jr in his last fight, earning a big win, and then defeated Nathan Cleverly. A tough customer, and a tough out for anybody.
- Bernard Hopkins – “The Alien” will be in the record books, perhaps permanently, after what he accomplished at 48 and 49 years old, winning titles and unifying them, scoring victories over Jean Pascal and Tavoris Cloud, and even agreeing to take on guys like Chad Dawson and Sergey Kovalev. Beating Karo Murat and Beibut Shumenov impressive considering the age gap. Will the ageless wonder continue campaigning? If so, you can’t question he’s one of the better fighters in the division.
- Artur Beterbiev – Talk about that bustling Canadian scene at light heavyweight. Enter the Russian Beterbiev, fighting out of Canada, who has scored 9 knockouts in 9 wins. It hasn’t been a slow progression, either, already toppling the likes of Gabriel Campillo and Tavoris Cloud. He wants Kovalev, and in a few more fights, that could be a thrilling event.
- Jean Pascal – Pascal went on a great run, despite his loss to Hopkins. He beat Adrian Diaconu twice, defeated Chad Dawson, and then knocked down Hopkins twice in their first encounter. All of the physical ability is there, but like we’ve known all along, it’s a raw package, and it comes with stamina problems. Finally got in the ring with Lucian Bute, and dominated his Canadian rival. Showed a lot of heart and grit in his loss to Kovalev, and had moments where he nearly pulled out a monumental upset.
- Yunieski Gonzalez – Gonzalez soars into the top 10 after coming out on the wrong end of a decision against Jean Pascal. It seemed for most like the Cuban controlled far more of the action, but the big name fighter got the nod. Hopefully we get to see more of Gonzalez against other top contenders soon.
- Juergen Braehmer – At first, I very hesitatingly put Braehmer back in the top 10, after a seemingly endless string of fight delays and cancellations. Defeated Eduard Gutknecht in 2013, surprising many — including myself. Has since stayed active and kept himself near the top of the rankings here.
- Edwin Rodriguez – Spent a year on the shelf after his loss to Andre Ward, but since has won three straight. He outclassed the previously unbeaten Craig Baker in his last outing.
- Eleider Alvarez – Alvarez, yet another in the Canadian 175 lbs, has his first major challenge next, going up against veteran Isaac Chilemba. If he’s able to pass that, as most expect, then there are a ton of exciting fights out there for him.
Isaac Chilemba, Nathan Cleverly, Nadjib Mohammedi, Julio Cesar Chavez Jr, Gabriel Campillo, Craig Baker,Marcus Browne, Umberto Savigne, Thomas Williams, Tommy Karpency, Chad Dawson, Tavoris Cloud, Thomas Oosthuizen, Denis Grachev, Blake Caparello, Dmitry Sukhotsky, Eduard Gutknecht, Zsolt Erdei, Ismayl Sillakh, Maxim Vlasov, Cornelius White, Cedric Agnew, Anatoliy Dudchenko