Commentary's divisional rankings

Dan Rafael reveals his new world standings for boxing's weight classes

Originally Published: April 19, 2011
By Dan Rafael |

Check out my rankings within each division by clicking on the links below.

Who is the best fighter regardless of weight class? See my pound-for-pound rankings.

Note: Results through July 4. In an effort to provide the most up-to-date rankings,'s division-by-division boxing rankings will be updated every Tuesday.

CruiserweightsJunior Lightweights
Light HeavyweightsFeatherweights
Super MiddleweightsJunior Featherweights
Junior MiddleweightsJunior Bantamweights
Junior WelterweightsJunior Flyweights/Strawweights

Wladimir Klitschko

1. Wladimir Klitschko (55-3)

They've gone back and forth for the past couple of years, but at long last it looks like we will see Klitschko face mouthy titleholder David Haye in a unification bout that the world has wanted to see. Next to Manny Pacquiao-Floyd Mayweather, it's the biggest fight in boxing. Let's just hope Haye doesn't back out again like he did the last time he signed a contract to face Klitschko.
Next: June 25 or July 2 vs. Haye.

2. Vitali Klitschko (42-2)

Klitschko was winning the first round of his March 19 title defense when mandatory challenger Odlanier Solis took a grazing shot to the head, stumbled back and fell to the canvas, injuring his right knee. The fight was called off and Klitschko had an easy win that was wholly unsatisfying to fight fans everywhere. Not his fault, though. There was talk about a possible June 4 interim bout, but Klitschko plans to wait until the fall to defend against Tomasz Adamek.
Next: Sept. 10 vs. Adamek.

3. David Haye (25-1)

It's about time the deal with the Klitschkos got done. But remember one thing: Haye has previously agreed to fight each brother and pulled out both times -- once after signing a contract to face Wladimir and once after agreeing to fight Vitali, but refusing to ultimately sign the deal. We'll believe the fight is for real when the bell rings.
Next: June 25 or July 2 vs. W. Klitschko.

4. Tomasz Adamek (44-1)

In his final tuneup before a fall title shot in his native Poland against Vitali Klitschko, Adamek dominated Kevin McBride to win a lopsided decision. On to the big one.
Next: Sept. 10 vs. V. Klitschko.

5. Alexander Povetkin (21-0)

Povetkin, the 2004 Olympic gold medalist who gave up a mandatory shot against Wladimir Klitschko and a career-high $2 million-plus payday in September, is coming off an unimpressive decision against journeyman Nicolai Firtha on Dec. 18. In Povetkin's defense, he did injure his right hand early in the bout.
Next: TBA.

6. Ruslan Chagaev (27-1-1)

Chagaev, a former titlist, is the mandatory challenger for Haye. But because of his history of hepatitis, Chagaev was not medically cleared to fight in England, where the rules are stricter than in Germany. That allowed Haye to take the unification fight with Klitschko.
Next: TBA.

7. Tony Thompson (35-2)

Thompson will open an ESPN2 "Friday Night Fights" card against Maurice Harris (24-14-2) -- who has won four in a row since a layoff of more than two years -- in a title eliminator that will push the winner a step closer to a mandatory shot against Wladimir Klitschko.
Next: May 27 vs. Harris.

8. Eddie Chambers (36-2)

In Chambers' first fight back since suffering a massive 12th-round knockout loss to Wladimir Klitschko, he scored a knockdown and outpointed Derric Rossy on Feb. 11 in a rematch of a 2007 fight Chambers won by knockout. The win moved Chambers a step closer to another mandatory title shot, although he would have no prayer in a rematch with Klitschko.
Next: TBA.

9. Alexander Dimitrenko (31-1)

Dimitrenko, whose only loss was by decision to Chambers in a July 2009 title eliminator, has won two in a row since that defeat, including a spectacular 12th-round knockout of former title challenger Albert Sosnowski on March 26.
Next: TBA.

10. Cristobal Arreola (30-2)

Since losing a tight decision to Adamek in April 2010, Arreola has won two fights in a row, including a first-round knockout of Joey Abell on Jan. 28. He will be back to face Nagy Aguilera (16-5) on the undercard of the Andre Ward-Arthur Abraham fight in the Super Six semifinals.
Next: May 14 vs. Aguilera.