Michael Rosenthal

Mayweather beginning to slip on pound-for-pound lists

Floyd Mayweather Jr. is beginning to lose his footing near the top of the pound-for-pound rankings.

The consensus No. 2 fighter for so long has dropped to No. 3 in both the Yahoo! Sports poll and ESPN.com pound-for-pound rankings, behind No. 1 Manny Pacquiao and new No. 2 Sergio Martinez. The reason? Presumably his inactivity: He hasn’t fought since he outpointed Juan Manuel Marquez on May 1 of last year.

And unless he schedules a fight by this May 1, he’ll probably be dropped by most major outlets. That includes THE RING, which requires fighters to be active within the past year or at least have a fight scheduled to be ranked.

In the Yahoo! poll, in which I and RingTV.com Co-Editor Doug Fischer vote, two voters left Mayweather off the list entirely. Of the 29 who listed him, a surprising 16 had him No. 3.

I suspect his inactivity played a role in that shift, although some might actually believe that Martinez is better or has accomplished more than Mayweather at this point.

Martinez is coming off his third sensational victory in a row, an eighth-round knockout of then-unbeaten Sergei Dzinziruk last Saturday.

Fischer and I still have Pacquiao and Mayweather at Nos. 1 and 2. Pacquiao is the unquestioned king of the sport and Mayweather probably remains the most-gifted boxer.

We’re with the rest of the world on Mayweather’s inactivity, though: If he doesn’t have a fight scheduled by May, he’s out.

Here’s a question: Where should Mayweather be ranked if he returns to the ring later in the year?

Fischer and I agree that that would depend on who he faces in his comeback and how he performs.

“If he chose to fight Cory Spinks and looked sloppy in outpointing him, I’d probably rank Mayweather outside of the top 5. If he chose Paul Williams and scored a late stoppage I might put him back at No. 2,” Fischer said.

Here are our Top 10 lists:

 

Rosenthal:

1. Manny Pacquiao

2. Floyd Mayweather Jr.

3. Sergio Martinez

4. Nonito Donaire

5. Andre Ward

6. Juan Manuel Marquez

7. Timothy Bradley

8. Juan Manuel Lopez

9. Wladimir Klitschko

10. Vitali Klitschko

 

Fischer:

1. Manny Pacquiao

2. Floyd Mayweather Jr.

3. Juan Manuel Marquez

4. Sergio Martinez

5. Nonito Donaire

6. Wladimir Klitschko

7. Vitali Klitschko

8. Pongsaklek Wonjongkam

9. Tomasz Adamek

10. Timothy Bradley

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