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Dave’s Year – End Top 10

By: Dave Iamele

Top 10 lb. for lb. Fighters:

Roy Jones

Oscar DeLa Hoya

Evander Holyfield

Johnny Tapia

Mark Johnson

Felix Trinidad

Ike Quartey

Ricardo Lopez

Naseem Hamed

                    10a) Shane Mosley

                    10 b) Floyd Mayweather, Jr.

                                (10a and 10b tie)

Honorable mention: (a) Bernard Hopkins, (b) Lennox Lewis, (c) Tim Austin

(1) Roy hopefully fights IBF champ, Johnson next or Dariusz Michalczewski of Germany; (2) Quartey 1st dangerous threat; (3) win or lose vs. Lewis, Holy should quit while still possessing faculties; (4) Interested to see how he’ll fair at 118 vs. WBA champ Konadu; (5) Poor guy can’t buy a decent challenger; (6) needs to fight someone other than Don King; (7) If he can beat Oscar, he’ll move up big time; (8) Possibly best strawweight ever; (9) Will beat the taco sauce out of Barrera; (10a) Right now, future looks bright; (10b) If Floyd can defeat Manfredy, he’ll be king of 130 lbs. And have to move up to 135 lbs. for challenge.

HM: A. Hopkins beats Allen in rematch B. if Lewis beats Holy he will enter at #6 C. Romero would be interesting opponent for Austin

Top 10 Most Interesting Match ups:

Lennox Lewis vs. Evander Holyfield

Oscar DeLa Hoya vs. Felix Trinidad

Ray Mercer vs. David Tua

Naseem Hamed vs. Floyd Mayweather, Jr.

Mark Johnson vs. Johnny Tapia

Vince Phillips vs. Kostya Tszyu II

Oscar DeLa Hoya vs. Ike Quartey

Wayne McCullough vs. Vuyani Bungu

Johnny Tapia vs. Tim Austin

Frankie Liles vs. Thomas Tate

Honorable mention: (a) Tyson vs. McCall, (b) Shane Mosley vs. Vince Phillips

Two heavy’s fighting for undisputed championship: it doesn’t get any better; (2) Oscar has to get by Ike first; (3) Something about this match-up just titillates me; (4) Possibly a great one; (5) It’ll never happen, but one to argue about; (6) I think Vince would kick his ass again; (7) I like Ike!!!; (8) Why not?; (9) If Tapia beats Konadu, a unification’s bout with Austin would make sense to everyone (but Don King); (10) Is Liles still boxing? Tate deserves title shot vs. someone.

HM: (a) These two head cases in the ring together!! Special guest referee: Dr. Joyce Brothers. (b) The young lion vs. the ring veteran. 

Top 10 fighters on the Brink:

Michael Grant

Floyd Mayweather, Jr.

Shane Mosley

Sharmba Mitchell

Yory Boy Campas

Ivan Robinson

Angel Manfredy

Wladimir Klitchko

Thomas Tate

Carl Thompson

Honorable mention: (a) David Tua (b) Ike Ibeabuchi (c) Robert Allen (d) Keith Mullings (e) Tony Marshall (f) Jose Luis Lopez

Possibly the next heavy; (2) championship blood line; (3) really "sugar" or just a sugar substitute?; (4) I’d like to see him fight Tszyu; (5) bout with "The Surgeon" very interesting; (6) if he beats Gatti again, he can make some good dough; (7) if he beats Floyd, I’ll be impressed; (8) don’t be shocked to see his name in heavy top 10 soon; (9) no one will give him a shot, that says something; (10) beats Arthur Williams, easy.

HM: (a) Win over Rahman would make him #5 heavy on my list; (b) if Pres. Ike can keep his personal life under control could be a force in division; (c) pulls upset off over Hopkins, he’d be the man at 160 lbs.; (d) needs a name opponent; (e) Does this guy have an unlisted phone number, no one calls him for a shot?; (f) truly a wild card.

 Top 10 over rated fighters:

Kostya Tszyu

Pernell Whitaker

Michael Moorer

Chris Byrd/Kirk Johnson

Genaro Hernandez

Dana Rosenblatt

Bronco McKart

Erik Morales

Marco A. Barrera

Charles Brewer

Honorable mention: (a) Ivan Robinson (b) Derrick Gainer (c) Miguel A. Gonzalez

To think there was talk about him fighting Oscar?! He’s scared to give Phillips a rematch; (2) How can this guy still be rated in some fools’ top lb. for lb. lists?; (3) no love for the sport; (4) rating either one of these boring bums in the top 10 of the heavy’s is a joke, neither one could beat anyone in the top 10; (5) five years ago. Azumah Nelson stops him just as quickly as Oscar did; (6) this guy just plain stinks!; (7) ditto; (8) the next Chavez? Please!! This chiwua couldn’t carry Julio’s jock strap; (9) second-placer; (10) some people actually thought this guy was good just because he didn’t lose his title in his first couple of push-over defenses.

HM: (a) Beating up Gatti is no big deal, now (b) smoke’s a joke (c) even if he beats the highly beatable Tszyu, either IBF or WBA champ would kick his mexican butt.

Top 10 under rated fighters:

Mark Johnson

Johnny Tapia

Lennox Lewis

Naseem Hamed

Angel Manfredy

Zab Judah

Vince Phillips

Tony Marshall

Joe Calzaghe

Robert Daniels

Honorable Mention: Mike Tyson


The invisible man of boxing; (2) the Rodney Dangerfield of boxing; (3) even if he beat Evander, US fans will never embrace this big Brit; (4) the guy people love to hate; (5) tougher than people give him credit for; (6) I just like his name; (7) boxing writers have been writing his obituary for years; (8) fights to the level of his competition; (9) deserves a title shot; (10) ditto.

HM: Before Holyfield losses, he was an all time great, after losses, he stinks? His third comeback may surprise more than a few people.

Top 10 heavyweights:

Evander Holyfield

Lennox Lewis

Michael Grant

David Tua

Ray Mercer

George Foreman

Ike Ibeabuchi

Andrew Golota

Shannon Briggs

Oliver McCall

Honorable mention: (a) Wladimir Klitchko (b) John Ruiz (c) Herbie Hide (d) Hasim Rahman (e) Lou Savarese

At least till he squares off with Lewis, Holy’s still the man; (2) right now Evander and Lewis are in a class by themselves at heavy; (3) the future champ; (4) Grant and Tua could be the Lewis/’Holyfield of the millennium; (5) needs to have a big name opponent, now!; (6) still a threat to anyone but 1 and 2; (7) only Ike can stop himself for now; (8) token white-hope; (9) Briggs vs. Golota, anyone?; (10) still crazy after all these years.

HM: (a) look for Wlad soon to crack top ten (b) why not (c) WBO champ, right? (d) if he beats Tua, he enters Top 10 (e) The Buster – buster

Top 10 fighters who should retire:

George Foreman/Larry Holmes (tie)

Tommy Hearns

Evander Holyfield

Vinny Pazienza

Julio Cesar Chavez

Terry Norris

Pernell Whitaker

Michael Nunn

Baby Jake Matlala

Sugar boy Malinga

(1,2,5,6,10) – all shot (3) why not go out with facilities intact, just for kicks? (4) no longer top 10 fighter (7) live after rehab? (8) interests? Nunn (9) looking for one more payday 

Top 10 opponents for Mike Tyson *:

Peter McNeeley

Oliver McCall


Dennis Rodman

George Foreman

Roy Jones

Christy Martin



Jose Luis Gonzales/Bruce Seldon (tie)

*first list was for out-of-jail comeback opponents, this is reinstatement comeback opp. List.


(1) Just to see if public would spend $50 again; (2) two crazies!! Yea – ha! (3) boxers vs. wrestlers, they still do that, right? (4) with no NBA, Rodman’s got to keep busy somehow; (5) just for the hell of it; (6) oh, I’d laugh!; (7) No comment; (8) four rounds, toughman rules; (9) just cause I like his name; (10a) he seems so nice!; (10b) Revenge! – no, really


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