Best at theirweight, 2000 to 2013
Since it has been like a morgue in here, I am taking it upon myself to provide a temporary diversion with a bit of a game. Rank the champions in each weight class for each year from 2000 to 2013. The idea is not to rank them based on the whole of their career, but rather by the level they were at when they won their championship (or for multiple time winners, the year they were at their peak). Starting at the little guys, the champions at 125 from 2000 to 2012 are:
Rank these guys from top to bottom (as none of these guys could truly deserve to be called 'best' or 'worst').
My shot at this: (1) Abas from 2002- gotta think he figures out Robles somehow. Speed, technique, toughness. (2) Robles-made some tough dudes look like little boys this year (3) Dubuque in 2006-strong, seasoned, confident. I know he lost some matches this year but by the time the tourney came around he was clutch.
Now, It gets hard. Some of the remaining guys were pretty dominant the year they won. There is sure to generate some pretty strong disagreements and there are a few guys I don't know much about but here it goes (4) McD. Hard to say if he was better in '12 than '10 but I will give the 2012 version the edge based on experience. At his peak he was very tough to beat. Other than Abas the only 3x finalist. (5) Troy Nickerson 2009-Awesome technique and developed some strength to help himself out. Beat Escobedo and Donahoe, champs the previous two years. This year was a pretty nasty bracket. (6) Angel Escobedo 2008-Very nasty in 2008, quick, explosive and torquey. I recall being very confident that nobody would beat him this year. (7) Travis Lee 2003 - I think he was better at 133, much more power and explosion. His bracket this year did not have a lot of big names. (8) Paul Donahoe 2007-tough dude but so is everyone else on this list. Maybe an underrated guy. (9) Jeremy Hunter-Don't know much about him but have seen some Youtube matches and didn't see anything to make me think he'd be able to beat the guys at the top of the list. (10) Jason Powell-Steamrolled the tournament in 2004 in very impressive fashion. Another guy I don't know really well but I did see he had two losses this year. (11) Jesse Delgato-Maybe I am selling him short b/c he improved a ton this year but I think had McD been healthy, he isn't on this list. I don't see him beating the bigger guys or technicians like Nickerson.
This was harder than I thought it would be; I had to jockey some guys around a bit and there are two guys (Hunter and Powell) I don't know very well. It is tough to rank guys that all could beat each other on any given day. 133 is going to be awful, somebody else take that one please.