Selecting the Fighters for a Division Set (page 2)


Once I've narrowed the field by cutting the fighters who would be the least appealing and serve little purpose, the hard work starts.

Taking each of the remaining fighters, I research them to find out how often each boxer was rated in the Top Ten by The Ring Magazine and other publications. At the same time, I'll note how often each fighter was either the lineal champion of the division, a 'major' alphabet champion, or a minor champion.


Using a numerical rating system for the elements cited above, the fighters and their specifics are entered into a spreadsheet, calculated and ranked.


After determining the rankings, I divide the pool of fighters into five groups that 'mimic' my final rating spreadsheets: Excellent, Very Good, Good, Limited and Poor. Then each of the groups is color-coded for easy referencing.

At this point, I can ascertain whether or not the total number of fighters in the existing pool will comprise a single set of 100 to 150 fighters or need to be split into multiple sets, a process that differs from division to division.

If the numbers indicate that only a single group will be needed, adding or eliminating fighters to hit 100 or 120 or 125, whatever, is simple enough. I either

add the best of the remaining ranked fighters required to meet the set number, or eliminate the weakest of the fighters included to achieve the same end.


When the number of fighters indicate that the division will have to be divided into multiple sets, a logical method for which fighters are to go in which set, I apply a percentage to each of the five groups. I start with a select number of percentages, then massage those numbers by increments of 1% until I either hit or come close to the number of fighters that I anticipate making up the set.

For example, I might start by taking 25% of the Excellent fighters and 25% of the Very Good fighters, then 25% of the Good fighters, and split the final 25% between the Limited and Poor fighters.

If that fails to meet the minimum number for a set, I apply a 1% increase, starting at the top and working my way down, until I hit. If the number of fighters exceed the minimum, I do the same thing but starting at the bottom and working my way to the top.

Joe Gans "The Old Master"

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