Filip Hrgovic: Record is very misleading; He's already elite (or close)
Twenty-seven year old, 6'5" Filip Hrgovic is only 9-0, 7 KO but don't his record fool you. As a representative of Croatia at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Hrgovic won a bronze medal as a super heavyweight and has ions of amateur experience.
Like Vasyl Lomachenko, Hrgovic, skills-wise, was a polished pro before his debut. And not unlike Loma, Hrgovic isn't padding his resume with opponents with .500 win percentages or novices; something we see often with up-and-coming fighters.
Most fellas, even amateur standouts, make their pro debuts against opponents with 15 fights or fewer but Filip made his professional outing against a fella who had 56 pro bouts (Raphael Zumbano 39-15-1-1 NC, 31 KO) and stopped him in Round 1.
And Since his September 2017 debut, Hrgovic has taken the fast track towards title contention, defeating the likes of Amir Mansour (then 23-2) and Gregory Corbin (then 15-1). And in only his seventh pro fight, he defeated respected veteran Kevin Johnson (then 33-11-1), a fella who's shared the ring with Vitali Klitschko, Anthony Joshua, Andy Ruiz, Jr, Kubrat Pulev, Tyson Fury, Dereck Chisora, Manuel Charr and Daniel Dubois.
And while he hasn't faced an elite foe yet, he's handing solid opponents as an elite fighter would.
On December 7 on the Joshua vs Ruiz 2 undercard, Hrgovic, in only his tenth pro fight, will face Eric Molina (27-5, 19 KO), a stellar contender with a good right hand and a lot of tricks up his sleeve. Like Johnson, Molina has shared the ring with fearsome and accomplished foes including Chris Arreola, Deontay Wilder, Tomasz Adamek, Anthony Joshua and Dominic Breazeale.
Filip Hrgovic will enter the Molina fight already ranked 13th in the heavyweight division by BoxRec. As you can see, he's hanging with good company.
BoxRec's Top 15 heavyweights (as of Dec 4, 2019)
1. Deontay Wilder
2. Andy Ruiz Jr
3. Anthony Joshua
4. Oleksandr Usyk
5. Tyson Fury
6. Alexander Povetkin
7. Dillian Whyte
8. Kubrat Pulev
9. Luis Ortiz
10. Dereck Chisora
11. Adam Kownacki
12. Joseph Parker
13. Filip Hrgovic
14. Dominic Breazeale
15. Oscar Rivas
Hrgovic is ranked No. 9 by the IBF and WBA, and No. 11 by the WBC.
Don't be surprised if Filip sneaks into the top 5 of one or more rankings by the end of 2020 or first quarter of 2021. The Molina fight will tell us more about this Hrgovic. He appears to be the elite-worthy... Or pretty darn close.