Final 2007 Pound for Pound List

By Matt Yanofsky: 1. Floyd Mayweather {Welterweight} - Floyd Mayweather’s impressive tenth round knockout of previously undefeated Ricky Hatton makes him the clear cut number one fighter in the world. Following his knockout of Hatton, Mayweather said that he is going to take “at least” two years off and shook off questions about fighting Miguel Cotto or anyone for that matter. Will this finally be it for Mayweather or is he pulling another short retirement on us?

2. Manny Pacquiao {Junior Lightweight}

Pacquaio easily defeated an old and faded Marco Antonio Barrera by unanimous decision on October 6th. Pacquiao will give the world the fight we all wanted to see as he will take on Juan Manuel Marquez for his WBC belt on a March 15th pay per view in a long awaited rematch of their 2003 draw.

3. Joe Calzaghe {Super Middleweight}

Calzaghe defined his greatness by cruising to a unanimous decision victory over WBA/WBC Super Middleweight Champion Mikkel Kessler on November 3rd. In reality, Calzaghe, who is the WBA/WBC/WBO and Ring Magazine champion, owns all of the Super Middleweight belts since he did vacate the IBF belt which is now held by Lucian Bute. There has been bad blood between Calzaghe and Bernard Hopkins as both have thrown verbal jabs {and almost physical ones during a heated confrontation at the Mayweather Hatton weigh in}. There are some talks about going back to the old school and having the potential Calzaghe Hopkins fight at Yankee Stadium if this is the case, hopefully it doesn’t rain that day!

4. Bernard Hopkins {Light Heavyweight}

After retaining his Light Heavyweight World Title by defeating Winky Wright in a 12 round snooze fest, Hopkins showed that he is still an elite fighter even if he has slowed down a bit. Hopkins said he wants to fight Joe Calzaghe in Yankee Stadium. Calzaghe called out Hopkins as well following his victory over Mikkel Kessler. Hopefully a fight between Hopkins and Calzaghe will be signed shortly.

5. Juan Manuel Marquez {Junior Lightweight}

Marquez scored an easy but bloody decision over contender Rocky Juarez, who suffered a bad cut from a clash of heads in the first round. Marquez will get the rematch with Manny Pacquaio, which he campaigned for quite some time. The rematch should be a thriller just like their first fight was!

6. Kelly Pavlik {Middleweight}

Kelly Pavlik proved to the boxing world that he is a true warrior and a star that is here to stay following his dramatic 7th round knockout over World Middleweight Champion Jermain Taylor. Pavlik came off the canvas to stop the previously undefeated Taylor in the best middleweight fight in recent memory. A rematch is scheduled for February 16th on Pay Per View at a catch weight of 166 lbs where Pavlik will keep his Middleweight belts win or lose.

7. Miguel Cotto {Welterweight}

Cotto showed his versatility in defeating future hall of famer Shane Mosley. Cotto used a powerful jab along with his signature body punching to earn a close but deserved victory. Cotto may be somewhat stuck since Mayweather appeared to shake off a Cotto bout. Oscar De La Hoya does not appear to be a potential opponent either because he said he couldn’t face Cotto (because his wife is Puerto Rican and doesn’t want him facing a Puerto Rican). With Mayweather pushing aside Cotto, hopefully De La Hoya talks his wife into at least $25 million extra in the bank. If he can’t get De La Hoya, a unification fight with IBF champ Kermit Cintron would be very exciting.

8. Ricky Hatton {Junior Welterweight}

Hatton showed the heart of a champion and gave it his all against Floyd Mayweather before getting stopped in the tenth round of their welterweight title fight. Hatton mightily tried to cut the ring off and attack Floyd’s body and his strategy worked somewhat over six rounds. Unfortunately, the best fighter in the world was able to land many clean shots and in the end unloaded a monster left hook that would stop just about anyone in the welterweight division. Hatton will live to fight another day and that day may be May 3rd against Oscar De La Hoya for a ton of money.

9. Israel Vazquez {Super Bantamweight}

After being stopped by Rafael Marquez in their first fight, Vazquez returned with a vengeance. Vazquez dropped Marquez in the 6th round and stopped him shortly after in the second straight fight of the year candidate between the two. Vazquez, who regained the WBC and Ring Magazine Championship showed the warrior he is and shocked the fans in a fight many predicted him to lose. A third fight is tentatively scheduled for March, 2008 but contracts are not yet signed.

10.Winky Wright {Middleweight}

Wright fell just short against legend Bernard Hopkins this past July in a fight that has zero demand for a rematch. I scored the fight a draw {as did Harold Lederman of HBO} but the three judges came up with the ludicrous scores of 116-112 and 117-111 twice for Hopkins. With Kelly Pavlik and Jermain Taylor set for a rematch, Winky will have to wait for something to develop or take a tune up with nothing significant scheduled for the time being.
Honorable Mention: Rafael Marquez, Chris John, Jermain Taylor, Cory Spinks, Wladimir Klitchko, Juan Diaz, Mikkel Kessler, David Haye, Ivan Calderon, Christian Mijares

Article posted on 23.12.2007

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