Who could feature in the new World Boxing Council 224-pound rankings?
World Boxing News predicts the fighters who could feature when the World Boxing Council reveals their new super cruiserweight rankings.
An eighteenth weight-class is set to be confirmed by the WBC imminently, with Deontay Wilder likely to be drafted in for the first shot.
But who else will feature on the voluntary rankings list alongside ‘The Bronze Bomber’ when announced?
Here’s a rundown of the potential Top 15.
First off, Oleksandr Usyk would not be placed on any initial list as the current WBO mandatory challenger at the higher limit.
Also, Alexander Povetkin – who made 224 pounds in his last fight with Dillian Whyte, is left out due to holding the World Boxing Council interim strap at heavyweight.
Wilder is a certainty of being the first name the WBC approach to fight in the first match-up for the 224-pound title.
‘The Bounty Hunter’ regularly hits around the 215 to 225-pound mark and would be an ideal candidate.
A former cruiserweight world champion, Gassiev recently moved up and would be a no-brainer to compete at 224.
The undefeated Croatian is making waves at heavyweight but is another of those at a limbo weight after previously campaigning at cruiserweight.
Another ex-cruiserweight king who is still finding his feet at the higher limit.
As one of the lighter heavyweight contenders, Djeko would certainly be in the mix.
Spong hovers around the exact new Bridgerweight limit and should be on any future WBC list.
Babic made cruiserweight in his last fight despite it being classed as heavy. The unbeaten Croatian has to be a shoo-in.
As a current cruiserweight champion, Briedis would definitely get the option to be included.
Makabu owns the 200-pound World Boxing Council title. The Congan would be on any Wilder shortlist for the first-ever world 224-pound title battle.
Wlodarczyk has an affinity with the WBC stretching back years and moving up is a possibility for the tough Pole.
At 37, a return from retirement to fight for the brand new championship wouldn’t be out of the realms of reality.
Rivas began his career at 224. Therefore, boiling back down wouldn’t be out of the question for the Canadian-Colombian.
The big Finn has shed a lot of weight recently when returning to form and was around the 220s in the past. Potential.
Recently dropping ten pounds to get himself in solid shape, Washington would likely be able to drop ten more if there was a title at stake.
POSSIBLE WORLD BOXING COUNCIL TOP 15 (224LBS)
1. Deontay Wilder
2. Ilunga Junior Makabu
3. Michael Hunter
4. Murat Gassiev
5. Mairis Briedis
6. Oscar Rivas
7. Marcos Huck
8. Robert Helenius
9. Tony Bellew
10. Krzysztof Wlodarczyk
11. Tyrone Spong
12. Alen Babic
13. Peter Milas
14. Joel Djeko
15. Gerald Washington