Coyote's Absolutely Useless & Unnecessary Pound-for-Pound list
By Coyote Duran (December 3, 2005)
I must be MAD! I can't believe I'm doing this.
Coyote Parody By icheehuahua
I'm actually compiling a pound-for-pound list of my very own. I swore I'd never do this and write an article promoting it (since pound-for-pound lists are fuel for loud, caps lock-style arguments on message boards pretty much making them absolutely useless and unnecessary but that’s just me). But I'm between Random Howlings columns and figured I'd choose a lazy out for now.
And just like my colleague Alex Pierpaoli’s Doghouse pound-for-pound lists, I’m sure mine will get critiqued much like his or just out-and-out blasted like my man, Maxboxing.com’s Dougie Fischer’s do. But I’m willing to test the waters for the sake of marrying statistics and my own personal brand of psychology. Or maybe because I like to tempt fate and be amused all at the same time.
Anyhoo, for this absolutely useless and unnecessary list, I provided my reasons for each fighter’s position in my Top 10 along with their records for those of you who are keeping score. And one more thing. Those of you who know me know that I hug The Ring Magazine’s nuts tighter than a three-year old does an Elmo doll so you’ll know that when I refer to a World Champion as opposed to an alphabet titlist, said World Champion is a Ring champion.
So read on, Howlers, and remember, my list is not to be taken seriously. So be gentle. And stop dumping on Dougie, please?
1. Floyd Mayweather Jr. (WBC Junior Welterweight Titlist), 35-0 (24)
To say that Mayweather's victory over Sharmba Mitchell meant nothing is certainly beating a dead horse. And not just beating it, but beating it into an unidentifiable puddle of paste. Fortunately for Floyd, he's been my #1 P4P pick since Bernard Hopkins' loss to Jermain Taylor in July. This is not to say that Mayweather's got a stranglehold on my list because if he doesn't give us more solid reminders why he's great, my #2 ranked fighter will certainly swap spots in a quickness. Whatever you do, please don't confuse my critique with a lack of appreciation on my part. It's a thing of beauty when Floyd is on duty but no matter how great the artist, oil paintings have so much less an impact when done on Charmin. Mind you, I did predict that Arturo Gatti would beat Mayweather. He didn't and I certainly accepted that. I also refuse to say that Gatti is or was lesser a fighter than many critics say he is or was. Gatti had a chance and Mayweather negated it. He's that good. Like I said, we just need some more reminders against more kick-ass opponents.
2. Winky Wright (Middleweight Contender), 49-3 (25)
If you would've told me two years ago that Winky Wright would be at or near the top of anyone's P4P list, I would've looked at you like a basset hound on hashish. Now I've always been a fan of Wright's but I'm also a fan of Paulie Ayala, Chris Byrd and David Tua and I wouldn't have thrown them in with the mythical pantheon either. However, within these two years, Wright didn't just say he was good, he proved it, unifying the World Junior Middleweight Championship, scoring a Ring belt and treating Felix Trinidad like a blind kid on crutches. Now campaigning fully as a middleweight, Wright enters new territory just when the drama kicks up. Should Jermain Taylor successfully defend the World Middleweight Championship against Bernard Hopkins this Saturday and Wright get past sturdy Sam Soliman the following weekend, the stage will be set for another potential 'no bullshit' middleweight showdown that certainly moves either fighter up anyone's P4P list.
3. Marco Antonio Barrera (WBC/IBF Junior Lightweight Titlist), 61-4 (42) with 1 No Contest
This year has pretty much been half and half for my #3 pick, Barrera. After another damn fine and entertaining win over archenemy Erik Morales late last year, Barrera took on WBC mis-mandatory Mzonke Fana and then-IBF junior lightweight titlist Robbie Peden, defeating both. Now, the win over Fana is of slightly less worth than a cashmere sweater dipped in diarrhea and deep-fried in motor oil but there's no question that Peden's still a rugged and dangerous challenge. By annexing Peden's belt to add to his own WBC trinket and possibly facing IBF 135-pound titleholder Jesus Chavez in early '06, Barrera's spot is well earned.
4. Bernard Hopkins (Middleweight Contender), 46-3-1 (32) with 1 No Contest
'Middleweight Contender'? Man, that doesn't roll of the tongue right when referring to Hopkins, does it? Buy I digress. As much a fan I am of The Ring, I had to make certain I wasn't hallucinating when I read that Hopkins dropped down to #10 in The Ring's P4P list after such a questionable loss to Jermain Taylor. Sure, it makes sense that Hopkins loses the top spot, but #10?! OK, up until the loss to Taylor, not all of Hopkins' opposition was sterling, but in a generally mediocre division (It's lookin' up, though!), he made do with what he had. Should Hopkins regain the World Middleweight Championship this Saturday, Hopkins' position on any list might not matter much since, win, lose or draw, this is supposedly Hopkins' last fight unless he breaks his promise to retire. Still, I won't rate Hopkins any lower than #4.
5. Manny Pacquiao (Junior Lightweight Contender), 40-3-2 (32)
Pacquiao hasn't really done much more since his loss to Erik Morales in March but kept sharp with a sixth round TKO win over Hector Velazquez. Pacquiao's fearlessness and willingness to chase potential threats to higher weights keeps him in a very respectable position on this list since his career-defining win over Marco Antonio Barrera at featherweight. Should 'Pac-Man' avenge his loss to Morales in their upcoming rematch, he steps into a position to potentially rise after Bernard Hopkins retires. If Barrera defeats Jesus Chavez early next year, a Barrera-Pacquiao rematch is a no-brainer.
6. Erik Morales (Junior Lightweight Contender), 48-3 (34)
How a fighter like Morales can run as hot and cold as he has this year is anyone's guess but that's exactly how one can describe 'El Terrible's' progress in 2005. Who would've thought that after giving Manny Pacquiao what for in March, the same Erik Morales would stink it up something 'terrible' six months later against Zahir Raheem? And I don't wanna hear any malarkey about a five-pound difference. Some cats Morales can figure out. On other occasions (rare as they may be), certain cats have Morales' number. Needless to say, Morales needs a decisive win over Pacquiao in their rematch to be looked at as anything other than 'solved.'
7. Diego Corrales (World Lightweight Champion), 40-3 (33)
One-half of the tandem that gave us 'The Fight of the Century' in May and its lesser (albeit fun-filled) offspring in October put a steel-toed boot in the ass of the lightweight division alongside the other half, Jose Luis Castillo. And dammit, they did it right. Both beat the best the division had to offer at the time and then (mouthpieces and drama at the scale be damned) they beat the shit out of each other. But 'Chico's' still the champ and what he's done at lightweight got him here. Should he beat Castillo in their rubbermatch or successfully campaign at 140, he could reasonably rise in this list.
8. Jose Luis Castillo (Lightweight Contender), 53-7-1 (47)
Corrales' most renowned dance partner is a ditto, explanation-wise. The only reason I have Castillo one slot lower than Corrales, despite his rematch KO win, is due to the puzzling circumstances leading up to the fight which kept Castillo from regaining the World Lightweight Championship. Castillo's choices are numerous, whether it's making weight and beating Corrales in a rubbermatch for the title or campaigning at 140 or even 147. Should 'El Temible' taste success in any of these ventures, his stock and legend will be certain to rise.
9. Jermain Taylor (World Middleweight Champion), 24-0 (17)
#9 isn't bad considering the relevance of Taylor's win over Bernard Hopkins in July. But it's as high as I'm willing to slot 'Bad Intentions' with consideration to the accomplishments and active statuses of those ranked #s 1-8. Couple that with the fact that the younger, stronger Taylor didn't beat the old warhorse Hopkins convincingly enough to trump the gentlemen ranked above him as well. This weekend, the World Middleweight Champion has the opportunity to change that and if successful, showdowns with Winky Wright, Kingsley Ikeke and Felix Sturm would be top shelf P4P rocket fuel.
10. Ricky Hatton (World Junior Welterweight Champion), 40-0 (30)
Homeys, I think Hatton rocks and although his championship winning scrap with Kostya Tszyu was dyed-in-the-wool, Tszyu, IMO, was more beatable, proportionately, than Bernard Hopkins. Depending on who you ask, Hatton's sick-ass KO win over Carlos Maussa for the useless WBA belt didn't do much to help Hatton rise on many lists, although it's certainly not damning at all. Hatton needs to up the quality of competition at 140 or leap to welter and invade. He's got great tools and is obviously exciting to watch. It's a good time in Hatton's career and he's high profile enough now to threaten or be threatened.
So whaddya think? Agree? Disagree? Do you have the urge to up and whack me in the virtual nuts? Well, get off your ass and make a list of your own and I'll chuck the most interesting in a Doggy (Mail) Bag.
And I won't even whack you in the virtual nuts.
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