Boxing is one of the most popular sports in the world, truly an international scene with top practitioners coming from all around the globe.
It is a game of both mind and body. With proper training and hard work, most anyone can become a decent boxer and beat the opponent wearing boxing gloves on their hands.
But there is a difference between being a “decent boxer” and being at the top of the class. Boxers with unique physical traits and mental sharpness have the best chance to reach the top.
It is not just about talking trash in the press conferences and filling the arena, but one needs intelligence, with superior skills, to become a superstar of the sport.
Here are the top five pound for pound boxers active today:
Entering the prime of his career, Canelo Alvarez is the first on the list. He has become one of the highest-paid athletes in the world after his fights with Gennadiy Golovkin. The Mexican boxer, who turned 30 on July 18th, has a record of 53-1-2 with 36 knockouts. The red-head showed his mastery at 175 in his last outing (see below).
His only loss is against Floyd Mayweather, when he was just 23-year-old, at junior middleweight. Canelo could fight and beat maybe anyone from middleweight up to light heavyweight.
Loma has amazed the boxing world with his degree of success so soon after turning pro, in October of 2013. Faster than any other pugilist, he snagged belts in three different divisions (126, 130, 135). The Ukrainian’s record is 14-1 with ten knockouts, the lone loss coming to the rugged vet Orlando Salido in his second pro bout.
His next test could be his stiffest; at 32, he meets young gun Teofimo Lopez, a 23 year old heavy hitter, in October.
Errol Spence Jr.
Errol Spence Jr. has a WBC and an IBF welterweight championship under his belt. The Texan owns a record of 26-0 with 21 knockouts. There is a huge debate in the boxing world about who’s better, Spence or Terence Crawford. I lean Spence, because he’s met the stiffer opposition.
But will he be the same brand of boxer after that severe car crash, in October 2019?
We shall see, he takes on Danny Garcia, no easy out, on Nov. 21.
Terence Crawford is one of the best boxers I’ve ever seen and he doesn’t disagree. Crawford will tell you he’s the best of breed at 147, and even pound for pound. The Nebraska fighter holds a 35-0 record with 26 knockouts. But has he passed his peak? He turns 33 on Sept. 28th, for the record. Will he be able to secure fights with Manny Pacquiao, Shawn Porter, Errol Spence soon? If he beats two of them, his claim to pound for pound top dog status becomes more widely accepted. But some pundits think he showed some aging, in his last outing, versus Egidijius Kavaliauskas (Dec. 14, 2019, TKO9 win for Bud.)
Golovkin is 38 years old and has a record of 40-1-1 with 35 knockouts. His only loss came against Canelo Alvarez, who now refuses to give him a third fight. GGG (click here to follow him on Facebook) won the IBF and IBO middleweight titles when he beat Sergiy Derevyanchenko in his last outing, October 5, 2019. But Derevyanchenko gave him a severe test, though Team GGG said their man had a bug the week of the fight.
Some folks will argue that people like Naoya Inoue, Oleksandr Usyk and Artur Beterbiev deserve to be ahead of GGG on this list, but feel free to debate his merits among yourselves.