The term “Pound for Pound” was originally created for Sugar Ray Robinson. Robinson is widely considered the greatest boxer ever. It meant that if all fighters were the same size, Robinson would beat them all. A pound for pound list determines who the best fighters are if, hypothetically, all were the same size.

BoxingAfrica.com determines a fighter’s status primarily by the quality of opposition. Fighting style is also given consideration as we look at head to head matchups but we believe your resume defines your greatness. We hope the list below reflects that and welcome all comments.

1. SAUL ALVAREZ (53-1-2, 36 KO’s) 

WBO World Light Heavyweight Champion

Saul “Canelo” Alvarez once again cemented his legacy, moving up to light heavyweight and dethroning Sergey Kovalev via brilliant eleventh-round TKO. Kovalev dictated the action for much of the fight but Alvarez took his time, breaking him down with body shots and counter-punches before putting him away with beautiful power punches in the end. No question, “Canelo” is the best fighter in the world and a Hall of Famer. At 30, he’s just now entering his prime.

Next: vs. TBD

2. ERROL SPENCE JR. (26-0, 21 KO’s)

WBC & IBF World Welterweight Champion 

Errol Spence Jr.

Errol Spence Jr. isn’t playing games. In March 2019, he showed incredible boxing skill and technique, defeating previously-undefeated four-division world champion Mikey Garcia in lopsided fashion. Then that September, he displayed grit, power and the ability to get down and dirty, dropping Shawn Porter en route to a split decision win in the Fight of the Year. Spence is now the man at welterweight. Up next? Two-time world champion Danny Garcia on December 5, a huge test for Spence coming off a serious single-car accident which many believed would end his career.

Next: vs. Danny Garcia on December 5

3. JERMELL CHARLO (34-1, 18 KO’s)

WBA, WBC & IBF World Super Welterweight Champion 

Jermell-Charlo

Jermell Charlo is the king of the super welterweight division, unifying three titles with a brilliant knockout of former unified champion Jeison Rosario. Charlo has fought a who’s who at 154-pounds and beaten them all. The Houston, Texas native combines elite skill, athleticism and discipline with some of the most powerful punches in the game. He may go down as one of the greatest 154-pounders ever.

Next: TBD

4. NAOYA INOUE (19-0, 16 KO’s)

 WBA & IBF World Bantamweight Champion

Naoya Inoue

Naoya Inoue showed he has the grit and will to match his skill and power when he won a decision over aging great Nonito Donaire last December. The unified bantamweight champion is now bringing his talents to the USA, where he plans to become a star. This could be the next Manny Pacquiao.

Next: vs. Jason Moloney on October 31

5. OLEKSANDR USYK (17-0, 13 KO’S)

Oleksandr Usyk

Oleksandr Usyk dominated the cruiserweight division, becoming the unidisputed champion. He plans to do the same at heavyweight where, after stopping the overmatched Chazz Witherspoon in October 2019, he’ll take on aging trialhorse Dereck Chisora on October 31 in his first real bout in the division. Can the smooth-boxing southpaw outwit foes at heavyweight? The world awaits.

Next: vs. Dereck Chisora on October 31

6. TERENCE CRAWFORD (36-0, 27 KO’S)

WBO World Welterweight Champion

Terence “Bud” Crawford is highly skilled, had a good run in lower divisions but has not had a meaningful bout since moving up to 147. Such a shame as the Nebraska native as a pure joy to watch. Following a less-than-stellar performance versus Egidijus Kavaliauskas last December, we hoped to see “Bud” in a big fight in 2020. Unfortunately, that will not be the case as he’ll return in November against the aged Kell Brook, a man who hasn’t fought at welterweight in nearly four years and whom many believe is simply showing up for a retirement check.

Next: vs. Kell Brook on November 21

7. LEO SANTA CRUZ (37-1-1, 19 KO’S)

WBA World Super Featherweight Champion 

The great Leo Santa Cruz is now a four-division world champion, easily outpointing Miguel Flores over 12 rounds. Santa Cruz, however,  who already owns wins over Abner Mares and Carl Frampton, isn’t satisfied with what he’s accomplished yet. On Saturday, October 31, he takes on undefeated three-time champion Gervonta “Tank” Davis in an epic pay-per-view headliner that could transform him from Hall of Famer to boxing legend.

Next: vs. Gervonta Davis on October 31

8. JUAN FRANCISCO ESTRADA (41-3, 28 KO’S)

WBC World Super Flyweight Champion

Juan Francisco Estrada

Watching Juan Francisco Estrada operate is almost like watching Juan Manuel Marquez do his thing. Estrada can simply do it all. A future Hall of Famer and one of the most well-rounded fighters in modern times, Estrada will now look to avenge the loss he hasn’t so far, the one he suffered against Roman Gonzalez back in 2012 when Estrada was only 22. That would be a fight fan’s dream. Enjoy both of these fighters while you can.

Next: TBD

9. TEOFIMO LOPEZ (16-0, 12 KO’S) 

WBA, IBF & WBO World Lightweight Champion

Teofimo-Lopez

“The Takeover” has arrived. Teofimo Lopez makes his debut on the BoxingAfrica.com pound for pound list with his dominant victory over Vasiliy Lomachenko in October. Lopez showed poise, skill and will in outboxing the man many believed was a master boxer. It was a stark contrast from his second-round stoppage of Richard Commey in 2019, when he showed terrifying power. Lopez has it all. Expect him to continue to climb up this list.

Next: TBD

10. MIKEY GARCIA (39-1, 30 KO’S)

Mikey Garcia

Mikey Garcia, already a great fighter, dared to join rare air by moving up to face world welterweight champion Errol Spence Jr. Garcia fell well short of his goal in losing a wide unanimous decision. However, he showed grit and a steel chin, somehow surviving Spence’s furious assault. But losing to Spence is no disgrace. Garcia proved he is a legitimate 147-pounder battering Jessie Vargas last February during a decision win. Is Manny Pacquiao next?

Next: TBD

The Next 10: Jermall Charlo, Josh Taylor, Gervonta Davis, Artur Beterbiev, Tyson Fury, Jose Ramirez, Miguel Berchelt, Gary Russell Jr, Luis Nery, Caleb Plant