Chris Williams: Canelo Alvarez an outstanding win last Saturday night on December 19 over Callum Smith was not enough to move the staff at ESPN in charge of their pound-for-pound ratings as they still have Mexican star # 2 behind # 1 Terence Crawford.
The people responsible for the pound for pound list with ESPN are seemingly more impressed with Crawford’s victories over those who love Kell Brook, Jeff Horn, Julius Indongo and Amir Khan than is the case with Canel’s victories over Gennadiy Golovkin, Sergey Kovalev, Callum Smith, and Danny Jacobs.
Canelo should be number 1
Chris Williams sees this as no competition between Alvarez and Crawford. Canelo has done much more in his career than he deserved first place compared to Crawford, whose resume is barren.
Having Crawford among the top five on the pound-for-kilos list is highly questionable because his resume lacks talent. Of the world champions, Crawford has one of the most mediocre in the sport.
Here are Crawford’s best victories in the three divisions in which he competed:
- 147: Egidijus Kavaliauskas
- 140: Victor Postol
- 135: Yuriorkis Gamboa
As you can see, none of these fighters are even close to the best in their divisions.
You can’t throw Kavaliauskas into a top welterweight category like Errol Spence Jr. or Shawn Porter and expect him to win. If you took the 36-year-old Postol and threw him in the ring against IBF / WBA welterweight champion Josh Taylor, it would be like watching hungry Velociraptor during feeding.
Is this a sign that ESPN is showing favoritism for one of its own, given Crawford’s (37-0, 28 KOs) fights on ESPN, while Canelo is on DAZN? The better question is would Canelo be at the top of ESPN’s pound-for-pound list if he fought on that network? I’d like to assume he will.
Alvarez looked sensational against Smith
Canelo (54-1-2, 36 KOs) effortlessly defeated WBA super middleweight champion Callum (27-1, 19 KOs) and also won the ‘W Magazine’ and vacant WBC belt with ‘W’ on the night.
Things like pounds for the pound are subjective, unfortunately, based on the whims of the people who put them together. It is not like mathematics in which there is only one correct answer for each problem.
Canelo has made it clear that the man of money is in North American boxing, and Crawford is nowhere near him in that category. Crawford doesn’t bring a rating like Canel and can’t sell out stadiums like the Mexican star.
If you are going to choose who is the number 1 fighter in boxing, you have to go to their level of opposition. You cannot choose a fighter based on his ability to change attitudes, counterattack and more around the ring against minor opposition.
If we were to choose fighters how well they throw shots, guys like Jorge Linares would be the king of the pound for the pound. He’s probably struggling with better form than anyone in the sport.
You have to look at the level of opposition of the fighters when calculating who should be kilogram for kilogram. In that regard, Crawford has never fought anyone as well as some of the fighters Canelo has fought.
Crawford’s biography lacks substance
Where in Crawford’s biography is someone with the abilities of Gennady Golovkin or Floyd Mayweather Jr.? It’s safe to say that these two fighters would have wiped the deck with everyone Crawford has struggled with during his career and it would have looked a lot better to eat them.
For me, I don’t see that there’s even a quarrel over who should be first in boxing. Canelo is OBVIOUSLY type 1 and is the best dog since Floyd Mayweather Jr retired in 2015.
Crawford is among the best with 147, but he is definitely NOT 1st on the pound for pound list, nor should he be. Unless we start picking fighters with horribly bad records and set them up for fighter no. 1 per pound, you can’t put Crawford in front of Canel.
If you’re going to ignore a fighter’s opposition when choosing the best guys for a pound for a pound, you should Edgar Berlanga (16-0, 16 KO) as # 1 P4P.
He has a better CV in terms of KO percentage and impressive knockouts in the first round than Canel and Crawford. Yes, Berlange’s opposition was uncomfortably poor, but Crawford also has a lot of mediocre fighters in his resume.