Take a look at the boxing pound for pound list as it stood in December 2014, after the last update which included Floyd Mayweather’s rematch over Marcos Maidana, Manny Pacquiao’s latest comeback victory, and much more.
Money Mayweather just keeps on rolling. He dominated Saul “Canelo” Alvarez in the biggest event of 2013, staking his claim not only as the top pound for pound fighter in the world, but the only ProBoxing-Fans.com champion in multiple weight classes; 147 and 154 lbs. His ring IQ, his innate sense of timing and distance, and his all-around boxing skill and acumen have truly made him nonpareil in the sport. He’s now done with his largely unnecessary rematch with Marcos Maidana, and there’s talk, yet again, of a Manny Pacquiao fight next spring.
Rigondeaux finally lured Nonito Donaire into the ring, mostly getting his opportunity due to the fact that Donaire’s team wasn’t going to put together a fight against Abner Mares. The Jackal took full advantage of his shot, and even if you thought he would win, you probably didn’t expect him to be so dominant. Rigondeaux completely dictated the fight against Donaire and showed a clear superiority in terms of pure boxing skill and ability. One of the best amateur fighters in history has had perhaps the best first dozen plus pro fights of any fighter to ever lace them up. Lots of big names at super bantamweight right now, along with lurking potential super fights, so hopefully we see some of these big namessquare off.
Gonzalez has built up quite the undefeated stretch thus far in his career. He’s a former champ at both Strawweight and Junior Flyweight, and now has a belt in a third division, Flyweight, for good measure. El Chocolatito has already beat the division’s champion, Juan Francisco Estrada, who himself ousted Brian Viloria. Hopefully the rematch between those two gets put together, which would be a true lower division mega-fight.
Mikkel Kessler. Arthur Abraham. Carl Froch. Not bad for a largely unproven fighter at the start of the Super Six Tournament. Then came the complete domination of Chad Dawson. Ward has been on an absolute tear, and hasn’t even seemed particularly tested or bothered against any of those guys. The injuries and promotional issues have both been unfortunate momentum breakers for the S.O.G., but finally got back into action with his route of Edwin Rodriguez. Consider that he’s fought just twice since the win over Froch nearly three years ago; Froch has fought five times. The lack of activity has to hurt his pound for pound standing a bit, sending him downward a few spots here. It’s been two years since the Dawson win. Two years! If he’s still on the shelf for the next update, he’s moving way down the list here, we have no other choice.
So, how does Juan Manuel Marquez get ranked ahead of Timothy Bradley? By some complex-voodoo-math, that’s how. It’s just hard to sort out the Pacquiao, Bradley and Marquez triangle. Bradley is a clear rung beneath Pacquiao. Marquez knocked out Pacquiao, but Bradley has the win over Marquez. Hmm. The Bradley-Marquez fight is the closest of the bunch, and the loss is the least damaging for Marquez. With Bradley most recently coming off the loss to Pacquiao, and there being no way at this time that Pacquiao can be above Marquez, we have Marquez here. Got it? Good.
Manny Pacquiao got his revenge and settled the score against Timothy Bradley. The fight was actually closer than their first match, but nevertheless, Pacquiao got the deserved win. With two wins back under his belt, he was supposed to be taking on Juan Manuel Marquez for a 5th time next. Instead, we got the Chris Algieri fight, which nobody outside of Team Algieri was too excited to see. Is it Mayweather next? Marquez? A move down to 140 lbs? We’ll have to wait and see.
Jean Pascal, Jermain Taylor, Andre Dirrell, Mikkel Kessler (twice), Arthur Abraham, Glen Johnson, Andre Ward, Lucian Bute, George Groves (twice). A 9-2 record against that level of opposition over the past five years, plus a win over Yusaf Mack. Even though he got dominated by Ward, that’s still an incredibly daunting and impressive run. Most impressive of all was the resounding KO win over the previously undefeated Bute. After a controversial ending to his first fight against Groves, Froch left no question marks in the rematch. The Cobra is still going strong, and he has a bevy of intriguing options for his next fight, including a long-awaited rematch with Ward — if Ward ever fights again, that is.
GGG made his debut on our pound for pound list not too long ago and he’s already boosted his way to the top 10, tearing a hole through the middleweight division at every step. Matthew Macklin was supposed to be his toughest fight to date, but Golovkin made it look like easy work, absolutely smashing him en route to an early stoppage win. Curtis Stevens came, and went, as was expected. Then Daniel Geale was supposed to be The Real Deal toughest fight to date, and well… how’d that go? Marco Antonio Rubio? Right. Martin Murray next. Miguel Cotto or Canelo Alvarez – please! How can you not root for this guy?
If you’ve followed the pound for pound rankings on this website, then you have surely noticed Klitschko jumping up and down from update to update. That’s because from fight to fight my opinion changes on how dominant he is, and whether he does enough with his size and talent. Case in point, he dominated Alexander Povetkin, but never applied himself in the way he could have, or should have, in what was an ugly, hard to watch match. Still, 63 career victories, and 21 straight wins over the past nine years, including 17 title defenses. Staggering. Kubrat Pulev was the latest guy who was supposed to be a legitimate challenger, and not so much. One of the best Klitschko performances we’ve seen recently.
As we’ve been saying, the Pacquiao-Marquez-Bradley situation is a mess. But Bradley still has the legit win over Marquez, and he acquitted himself pretty well against Pacquiao in fight number 2. I’m guessing that even in that defeat, he feels as if he has the monkey off his back now. So how does he drop so far down in comparison? His last four fights should read 2-2, including a barely hang on to win fight against Ruslan Provodnikov. Looking for big fights once again in 2015.
Terence Crawford makes a triumphant debut into the pound for pound list. The win over Yuriorkis Gamboa was the real hallmark victory in his career thus far, but don’t discount a dominant performance over Raymundo Beltran. That win was good enough to crown him as our Lightweight Champion, even if it’s short lived as he seeks greener pastures at 140 lbs. The sky is the limit for this kid with his talent and varied skill-set, along with his apparent fighter’s instincts.
Miguel Cotto just put on perhaps the best performance of his career, moving up to Middleweight and taking out the long-reigning kingpin, Sergio Martinez. Cotto shocked most of the boxing world with that win, and the sheer dominance of his effort from start to finish. He would have soared even higher up the list, but let’s not forget how recently he looked awful in losing widely against Austin Trout. Now though, he’s refreshed and rejuvenated, and a potential rematch with Floyd Mayweather looms large as a very interesting fight next year, although it’s not getting much publicity as of now.
Juan Francisco Estrada made his debut onto our list following his dominant win over Giovani Segura. The Flyweight king since he ousted Brian Viloria, he also handed Milan Melindo his first loss. Would love to get a chance at revenge against Roman Gonzalez, who defeated him two years ago, and just so happens to be nipping at his feels in the division right now.
Krusher quickly rose from nowhere to become one of the must-watch fighters in the game. Made short work out of the likes of Gabriel Campillo and Nathan Cleverly, and then, Ismayl Sillakh, Cedric Agnew and Blake Caparello. What’s not to like? Was supposed to be on a collision course with Adonis Stevenson, but we got jobbed out of yet another great fight. Instead, he took on the ageless Alien, Bernard Hopkins, and dominated him as a supposed killer should against a guy who’s nearly 50. Looks like he’s facing Jean Pascal in 2015.
I don’t care what his record says. If you don’t think he’s one of the best 20 fighters on the planet, then you need to reevaluate how you watch the sport. And if Orlando Salido was forced to actually, you know, make weight, then Lomachenko would be 4-0 with a win over him and Gary Russell in his first four pro outings. I don’t need to remind you of the 396-1 amateur record, do I?
Canelo reappears in our pound for pound list after the close win over Erislandy Lara. It was a tough, close fight, but Canelo prevailed, making it two straight since losing to Floyd Mayweather. There’s no shame in losing to Mayweather, is there? Both of his best wins, Lara and Austin Trout, were razor-thin though, taking some luster away from them. Some would argue he lost both of those bouts. Nevertheless, looking at a fight against Miguel Cotto in 2015.
Mikey Garcia was long the next best thing, but the competition he faced was just so miserable for so long. He shined with his dominant win over Orlando Salido, scoring three knockdowns along the way. Followed that up by taking out Juan Manuel Lopez, moving up to 130 lbs and defeating Roman Martinez, and then outclassing Juan Carlos Burgos. His offensive arsenal is just so smooth and refined. Momentum stalled though as he hasn’t fought since the Burgos fight in January 2014.
Garcia fell a long way after his disappointing outing against the tough Mauricio Herrera. It’s a big drop after having just scored his breakout win against Lucas Matthysse, but it is what it is. I never put any stock into his wins over Erik Morales. The knockout of Amir Khan was sensational, and he got past a stern test from Zab Judah. But it’s been a bad year, with the Herrera fight, and then an absolute time killer against Rod Salka. Swift has plenty of opportunities to prove himself once again, and if you’ve learned anything yet, you probably shouldn’t bet against him because he finds ways to win.
Uchiyama’s resume isn’t the lengthiest, but he’s made it count. Broke out into the scene with stoppage wins over Takashi Miura and Jorge Solis. Since, has defeated two unbeatens in Bryan Vasquez and Jaider Parra, and scored another title defense in December. For reference, it was Vasquez who just impressed so many people in an undercard showing, and he was stopped by Uchiyama. Only blemish is a technical draw for a fight stopped in the 3rd round against Michael Farenas. Hasn’t fought in a full year though, from New Years Eve to New Years Eve.
Shinsuke Yamanaka has flown under the radar for American fight fans. When Vic Darchinyan traveled to Tokyo in 2012 to fight him, it was presumed by many to be a quick stopover for the Raging Bull on the way to bigger things. But Yamanaka didn’t see it that way, handing him a defeat, and adding to a growing resume which includes wins over Malcolm Tunacao, Tomas Rojas, and Christian Esquivel. He’s staying busy, too, with four title defenses since August 2013.
We formerly showcased a list of the top 10 pound for pound boxers, but it has now been bumped up to the top 20, with about 25 more on the bubble listed as well. It’s all in the effort to provide for you the most complete picture of the sport’s very best.
The next 25+ on the Bubble (in alphabetical order)
Devon Alexander, Canelo Alvarez, Kell Brook, Adrien Broner, Lucian Bute, Nonito Donaire, Carl Frampton, Yuriorkis Gamboa, Jhonny Gonzalez, George Groves, Yoan Pablo Hernandez, Bernard Hopkins, Marco Huck, Koki Kameda, Amir Khan, Erislandy Lara, Marcos Maidana, Abner Mares, Sergio Martinez, Lucas Matthysse, Anselmo Moreno, Omar Narvaez, Jean Pascal, Lamont Peterson, Shawn Porter, Orlando Salido, Leo Santa Cruz, Giovani Segura, Adonis Stevenson, Miguel Vazquez, Simpiwe Vetyeka, Brian Viloria, Nicholas Walters