Sports

Should Manny Pacquiao or Floyd Mayweather be the No. 1 Pound-for-Pounder?

| by Alex Groberman

Generally speaking, it’s impossible to have a normal debate about Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr. on the merits. If you make any sort of positive case for the Filipino champion, Mayweather’s fans instantly dub you a blind follower. If you make any sort of positive case for the boxing’s best undefeated fighter, Pacquiao’s fans say you’re just a hater. It’s a lose-lose situation, any which way you want to look at it. And, really, the polarization as it applies to these two isn’t just limited to actual boxing stuff. Even dumb out-of-ring distractions, personal takes on social issues and largely irrelevant financial debates can spark furious arguments among the crazies.

All of which makes Yahoo! Sports’ recent unveiling of the top pound-for-pounders in the world list even more entertaining. If Pacquiao and Mayweather fans get up-in-arms about their guys being compared regarding completely meaningless non-issues, how do you think they’ll feel when their favorite fighter is listed below their least favorite fighter on one of the most respected boxing rankings lists around?

In this most recent edition of Yahoo! Sports’ top pound-for-pounders, the rankings stayed the same as last time: 1.) Mayweather and 2.) Pacquiao.

The question is: does Mayweather really deserve to be on top of Pacquiao after his performance versus Miguel Cotto? A performance, mind you, in which Mayweather didn’t even really look like the better fighter for slightly less than half the match, Sure, Floyd picked things up in the later rounds and no doubt earned his victory when it was all said and done; but, was the undefeated champ’s 43rd win really any more dominant or impressive than Pacquiao’s latest victory over Juan Manuel Marquez?

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And to take it a step further, what recent +1s in Mayweather’s win column justify him being higher than Pacquiao on this list? His sucker-punch W versus Victor Ortiz? That bout with Shane Mosley in which Old Man Splenda popped him with that memorable blow in the second?

None of which is to say that Pacquiao has done anything extraordinary as of late. He got a win versus a scared, ancient Mosley and an unimpressive decision victory versus Marquez – not exactly anything to write home about. But there is probably a case to be made that he deserves the No. 1 spot just as much as his arch rival does.

Which brings us to the question: do you have a problem with Mayweather being atop Pacquiao on the most recent Yahoo! Sports pound-for-pound chart?

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