Commentary

Chambers dominates Dimitrenko

Originally Published: July 6, 2009
By Dan Rafael | ESPN.com

Eddie ChambersKrafft Angerer/Bongarts/Getty ImagesDespite being the shorter man, Eddie Chambers had no problems finding the point of Alexander Dimitrenko's chin.


A roundup of the past week's notable boxing results from around the world:

Saturday at Hamburg, Germany
Heavyweight
Eddie Chambers W12 Alexander Dimitrenko
Title eliminator
Scores: 117-109, 116-111, 113-113
Records: Chambers, 35-1, 18 KOs; Dimitrenko, 29-1, 19 KOs

Rafael's remark: It's never easy for a foreigner to win a decision in Germany, but Philadelphia's Chambers did it and deserved it, despite the laughably even scorecard turned in by judge Paul Thomas. In earning a mandatory shot at one of champion Wladimir Klitschko's alphabet belts, Chambers dominated the second half of the fight against Dimitrenko, who had never faced anyone as good as Chambers before. His promoter, Universum, babied him for years, and when it came time for an eliminator against a solid opponent, he was outclassed.

Chambers, 27, clearly took the fight very, very seriously. He weighed only 208 pounds, the lightest of his nine-year career and a far cry from the flabby 223 he weighed in his career-best decision win against former titlist Samuel Peter in his last fight in March. Chambers also knew what to expect in Germany on his second trip there. In January 2008, he lost a lackluster decision to 2004 Olympic gold medalist Alexander Povetkin in a title eliminator. This time, he appeared far more prepared physically and mentally as he won his fifth bout in a row. Dimitrenko, a Ukrainian based in Germany, weighed 250 pounds and, at 6-foot-7, towered over the 6-1 Chambers. But Dimitrenko, who turned 27 the day after the fight, was unable to use his height, weight or reach advantages. Instead, Chambers worked his way inside when he needed to, and peppered Dimitrenko with clean punches from both hands.

It was surprising to see the smaller man hurt Dimitrenko on more than one occasion. He hurt Dimitrenko to the body in the fifth round. In the seventh round, Chambers was credited with a knockdown after a left hook to the body hurt Dimitrenko with 30 seconds left in the round and referee Geno Rodriguez gave him an eight-count. Chambers finished the round by unloading a flurry. Dimitrenko is lucky that the bell rang, or he would have probably gone down. Chambers scored a clean knockdown in the 10th round. He nailed Dimitrenko with a left hook to the chin that knocked him to the seat of his pants and sent his mouthpiece flying across the ring. Dimitrenko seemed exhausted, and was lucky to get out of the round, which Chambers finished strong. Chambers also hurt Dimitrenko in the 12th round to close out an impressive win.

Klitschko has another mandatory due against Povetkin, so Chambers' title shot probably won't come until at least March or April of 2010. However, Chambers promoter Dan Goossen, ecstatic with the victory, told ESPN.com from Germany that Chambers will not sit around and wait for the title shot. He plans to have Chambers fight at least once more this year before the eventual title bout.

Cruiserweight
Alexander Alekseev TKO3 Kendrick Releford
Records: Alekseev, 18-1, 16 KOs; Releford, 20-13-2, 10 KOs

Rafael's remark: Alekseev, 28, was on the fast track when he was matched with Victor Emiliano Ramirez of Argentina for an interim belt on Jan. 17. However, Ramirez pulled the upset and scored a ninth-round stoppage against Alekseev, a native of Uzbekistan based in Germany. On the comeback trail, Alekseev has won two in a row. In May, he outpointed Max Alexander, a former participant on "The Contender" reality series, and then became only the second man to stop the experienced Releford. His only previous stoppage loss was a ninth-round TKO against the hard-punching DaVarryl Williamson in 2004. Against Alekseev, 27-year-old Releford of Fort Worth, Texas, retired on his stool after the third round, as his five-fight winning streak ended.

Saturday at Vienne, France
Bantamweight
Anselmo Moreno W12 Mahyar Monshipour
Retains a bantamweight title
Scores: 116-113, 116-112 Moreno, 115-113 Monshipour
Records: Moreno, 26-1-1, 8 KOs; Monshipour, 31-4-2, 21 KOs

Rafael's remark: Panama's Moreno, 24, went to Monshipour's French turf and claimed the split decision to retain his title for the fourth time. It was the second split decision victory in a row for the southpaw, both coming in his opponent's home country. Moreno, 10 years younger than the challenger, withstood enormous pressure from Monshipour, a former junior featherweight titlist who knows no other way to fight but moving forward and throwing a lot of punches. Monshipour defended his junior featherweight belt five times from 2003 to 2006. He was stopped in the 10th round by Thailand's Somsak Sithchatchawal in an all-time classic slugfest that was named the 2006 Fight of the Year. Following that brutal slugfest, Monshipour retired for more than 2½ years until returning in late 2008. He won three fights in a row before dropping down to bantamweight to challenge Moreno.

Friday at Paris
Lightweight
Anthony Mezaache W12 Andrei Kudriavtsev
Retains European lightweight title
Scores: 116-112, 115-113 (twice)
Records: Mezaache, 16-5-3, 3 KOs; Kudriavtsev, 31-7, 13 KOs

Rafael's remark: Mezaache, 30, of France, retained the European title in his first defense in a rematch with Kudriavtsev, 32, of Ukraine, who was fighting outside of his home country for only the third time. They first met in November 2006 in Monte Carlo with Kudriavtsev winning a 10-round majority decision. Mezaache, now 7-0-2 since that loss, went on to claim the European title via unanimous decision in a February upset of John Thaxton in his home country of England before avenging the loss to Kudriavtsev.

Junior welterweight
Souleymane M'baye W12 Colin Lynes
Wins vacant European junior welterweight title
Scores: 115-112, 115-113 M'baye, 115-113 Lynes
Records: M'baye, 38-3-1, 21 KOs; Lynes, 31-6, 12 KOs

Rafael's remark: M'baye, 34, a former titleholder from France, went through a rough stretch in 2007 and 2008 in which he went 1-3, losing his world title to Gavin Rees and later losing a title eliminator to Herman Ngoudjo. But since the loss to Ngoudjo 13 months ago, M'baye has won two in row. In his latest victory, he pulled out the split decision against Lynes. Lynes, 31, of England, is the former European champion who lost his third in a row. He agreed to take the fight on short notice after Paul McCloskey pulled out with a hand injury.

Dan Rafael is the boxing writer for ESPN.com.