Terence Crawford still rated #1 above #2 Canelo Alvarez on ESPN’s pound-for-pound list
By Chris Williams: Canelo Alvarez’s outstanding victory last Saturday night on December 19th over Callum Smith wasn’t enough to budge the staff at ESPN in charge of their pound-for-pound ratings, as they still have the Mexican star #2 behind #1 Terence Crawford.
The people in charge of the pound-for-pound list with ESPN are seemingly more impressed with Crawford’s wins over the likes of Kell Brook, Jeff Horn, Julius Indongo, and Amir Khan than they are with Canelo’s wins over Gennadiy Golovkin, Sergey Kovalev, Callum Smith, and Danny Jacobs.
Canelo should be #1
Chris Williams sees it as no competition between Alvarez and Crawford. Canelo has done way, way more with his career to deserve the #1 spot compared to Crawford, whose career resume is barren of talent.
To have Crawford in the top five of the pound-for-pound list is highly questionable because his resume is too lacking in talent. Of the world champions, Crawford has one of the most mediocre in the sport.
Here are Crawford’s best wins in the three divisions he’s competed at:
- 147: Egidijus Kavaliauskas
- 140: Viktor Postol
- 135: Yuriorkis Gamboa
As you can see, none of those fighters even close to being the best in their respective divisions.
You can’t throw Kavaliauskas in with a top welterweight like Errol Spence Jr or Shawn Porter and expect him to win. If you were to take the 36-year-old Postol and tossed him in the ring against IBF/WBA llght welterweight champion Josh Taylor, it would be like watching a hungry Velociraptor during feeding time.
Is this a sign of ESPN showing favoritism for one of their own, given Crawford (37-0, 28 KOs) fights on ESPN, whereas Canelo is on DAZN? A better question is would Canelo be #1 on ESPN’s pound-for-pound list if he fought on that network? I’d be willing to guess that he would.
Alvarez looked sensational against Smith
Canelo (54-1-2, 36 KOs) effortlessly defeated WBA super middleweight champion Callum (27-1, 19 KOs) and he also won the Ring Magazine and vacant WBC belt with the ‘W’ on the night.
Things like pound-for-pound lists are subjective, based on the whims of the people that put them together, unfortunately. It’s not like math where there’s only one right answer for every problem.
Canelo has clearly shown he’s the money man in North American boxing, and Crawford is nowhere near him in that category. Crawford doesn’t bring in ratings like Canelo, and he can’t sell out stadiums like a Mexican star.
If you’re going to pick out who the #1 fighter is in boxing, you have to go on their level of opposition. You can’t select a fighter based on his ability to change stances, counter-punch, and more around the ring against lesser opposition.
If we were to pick fighters just how good they throw punches, guys like Jorge Linares would be the pound-for-pound king. He arguably fights with better form than arguably anyone in the sport.
You have to look at the level of opposition for fighters when factoring in who should be #1 pound-for-pound. With that said, Crawford has never fought anyone remotely as good as some of the fighters Canelo has fought.
Crawford’s resume lacks substance
Where on Crawford’s resume is someone with the ability of Gennadiy Golovkin or Floyd Mayweather Jr? It’s safe t say that those two fighters would wipe the deck with everyone that Crawford has fought during his career, and look much better eating them.
For me, I don’t see there even being an argument about who should be #1 in boxing. Canelo is CLEARLY the #1 guy, and he’s been the top dog since Floyd Mayweather Jr retired in 2015.
Crawford is among the best at 147, but he’s definitely NOT #1 in the pound-for-pound list nor should he be. Unless we’re going to start picking fighters with terribly poor records and make them the #1 pound-for-pound fighter, you can’t put Crawford ahead of Canelo.
If you’re going to ignore a fighter’s opposition when choosing the top pound-for-pound guys, they should have Edgar Berlanga (16-0, 16 KOs) as #1 P4P.
He has a better resume in terms of KO percentage and impressive first-round knockouts than Canelo and Crawford. Yeah, Berlanga’s opposition has been embarrassingly poor, but Crawford has a lot of mediocre fighters on his resume as well.
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