Sherdog’s Boxing Pound-for-Pound Top 10

By Staff Jun 8, 2017
Since we last updated the Boxing Pound-for-Pound Top 10, there have been multiple changes. Some fighters have fallen off, while others have skyrocketed on the rankings ladder. Light heavyweights, middleweights and those hovering around the welterweight limit make up the majority of the list. No matter how you slice it, these guys are the best of the best.

1. Andre “S.O.G.” Ward (31-0, 15 KOs)

It looked like “S.O.G.” was set to take the boxing world by storm when he shredded the competition in the Super Six World Boxing Classic between November 2009 and December 2011, but Ward battled injuries and promoters, effectively halting his forward progress. However, he went toe-to-toe with Sergey Kovalev in November, eked past the Russian with a unanimous decision and captured the WBA, IBF and WBO light heavyweight titles. Ward will meet Kovalev in a rematch on June 17 in Las Vegas.

2. Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev (30-1-1, 26 KOs)

The knockout machine has mowed down all but a few of his opponents and nearly took out Andre Ward in the second round of their showdown on Nov. 19. However, “Krusher” could not seal the American’s fate, and while a significant chunk of the boxing community thought Kovalev deserved the nod, he fell short on the scorecards. It brought an end to a 14-fight winning streak that included victories over Bernard Hopkins (twice), Jean Pascal and Nathan Cleverly. Kovalev will square off with Ward for a second time in June, when he aims to exact a measure of revenge.

3. Gennady “GGG” Golovkin (37-0, 33 KOs)

“GGG” had wiped out virtually anyone and everyone who dared to step into the ring with him but struggled against Daniel Jacobs in March. Though the Kazakhstan native had his hand raised, many observers cried foul and suggested Golovkin had been gifted a unanimous decision at Madison Square Garden in New York. Even so, no one can deny the resume the 2004 Olympic silver medalist has put together. Golovkin will meet Saul “Canelo” Alvarez in a blockbuster matchup on Sept. 16.

4. Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez (46-1, 38 KOs)

Though he suffered his first professional loss in a mesmerizing brawl with Wasaksil Wangek in March, the Nicaraguan knockout machine remains one of the best fighters on the planet. “Chocolatito” still has a few years left to dominate the smaller weight classes, and it starts with a rematch against Wangek. The two will square off again on Sept. 9 in California, as Gonzalez aims to avenge his majority decision loss and reclaim the WBC super flyweight championship.

5. Vasyl Lomachenko (8-1, 6 KOs)

The Ukrainian may only have nine professional fights under his belt, but Lomachenko has made his mark. Arguably the greatest boxer of his generation, the two-time Olympic gold medalist has looked all but invincible in recent outings. He trounced Nicholas Walters and Roman Martinez in 2016 before tearing up Jason Sosa to retain the WBO junior lightweight title on April 8. Perhaps “Hi-Tech” will be back in the ring sooner rather than later.

6. Terence “Bud” Crawford (31-0, 22 KOs)

“Bud” might be the scariest fighter on this list, and the Omaha, Nebraska, native shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon. Crawford had a coming-out party in July, when he dominated Viktor Postol to a unanimous decision and has since delivered impressive knockouts of John Molina Jr. and Felix Diaz. The 29-year-old has hall-of-fame talent, and the results speak to it.

7. Guillermo Rigondeaux (17-0, 11 KOs)

No one questions Rigondeaux’s talent, but his inactivity has kept him the shadows of other pound-for-pound greats. The Cuban defector competed twice in 2013, twice in 2014, once in 2015 and once in 2016. A two-time Olympic gold medalist, Rigondeaux has not fought since he routed Jazza Dickens in July. He will be back in action on June 17, when he faces Moises Flores at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas.

8. Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (49-1-1, 34 KOs)

Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. did not mount much of a challenge to Alvarez in their mega fight on May 6, as “Canelo” gave his fellow Mexican a boxing lesson and embarrassed him across 12 rounds. Perhaps the sport’s biggest star at the moment, Alvarez can rocket up this list if he can defeat Gennady Golovkin on Sept. 16 in Las Vegas.

9. Shinsuke Yamanaka (27-0-2, 19 KOs)

Few outside of Japan know much about the WBC and The Ring bantamweight champion despite his 22-fight winning streak. The 34-year-old has already beaten Anselmo Moreno twice, pounded on Vic Darchinyan and successfully defended his 118-pound crown on 12 occasions. Fresh off a seventh-round technical knockout of Carlos Carlson in March, Yamanaka’s next assignment comes in an Aug. 15 pairing with Luis Nery in Kyoto, Japan.

10. Keith Thurman (28-0, 22 KOs)

Easily one of boxing’s most gifted fighters, Thurman has reached a point in his career where he can become an all-time superstar like “Sugar” Ray Leonard and Thomas Hearns or an overlooked great like Ike Quartey and Donald Curry. The 28-year-old Clearwater, Florida, native has all the tools and already owns victories over top-level opponents like Shawn Porter and Danny Garcia. A much-talked-about clash with Errol Spence Jr. could come next.

Other Contenders: Errol Spence Jr., Naoya Inoue, Anthony Joshua, Mikey Garcia, Leo Santa Cruz, Wisaksil Wangek


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