Here is World in Sport’s updated pound-for-pound rankings for November. Since our last rankings were released, a number of notable boxers have fought. Josh Taylor earned a unanimous decision win over Regis Prograis in the WBSS Super Lightweight Final and Naoya Inoue defeated Nonito Donaire in the WBSS Bantamweight Final; both fights were action-packed back-and-forth contests. Canelo Alvarez stopped Sergey Kovalev in another competitive fight to earn a world title in his fourth weight class.
Oleksandr Usyk was successful in his first bout at heavyweight since becoming the undisputed champ at cruiserweight, forcing Chazz Witherspoon to retire after seven rounds. Callum Smith beat John Ryder by unanimous decision in a very close fight. Leo Santa Cruz also became a four-division world champion when he defeated Miguel Flores by unanimous decision. Lastly, WBC heavyweight champ Deontay Wilder stopped Luis Ortiz in seven after the latter had gained a significant lead on the scorecards.
Josh Taylor jumps into our rankings at #17, pushing Sergey Kovalev out of the Top 20. Saul “Canelo” Alvarez, Naoya Inoue and Oleksandr Usyk stay put at #3, #4 and #5, respectively. Leo Santa Cruz remains at #9, and Deontay Wilder jumps up a few spots to #13 after his devastating knockout win over a solid opponent. After a controversial win, Callum Smith drops right below Wilder to #14.
My list is based on a number of factors, ranked below by order of importance:
- 1: Resume – Has he dominated his division? How has he performed against top competition?
- 2: Ability – How special is he in the ring? Is he one-dimensional or well-rounded?
- 3: Weight – Has he moved up in weight with success? Slight bias towards the more competitive divisions.
- 4: Potential – Is the fighter on the decline, or can he get even better?
- 5: Activity – Fighter must have fought at least once within the past year.
* = Fighter has fought since last rankings.
1 ▬ Terence Crawford (USA) | 35-0-0
Notable Wins: Yuriorkis Gamboa, Viktor Postol, Jeff Horn, Amir Khan
2 ▬ Vasyl Lomachenko (UKR) | 13-1-0
Notable Wins: Gary Russell Jr., Nicholas Walters, Guillermo Rigondeaux, Jorge Linares
3 ▬ Saul Alvarez* (MEX) | 53-1-2
Notable Wins: Erislandy Lara, Gennady Golovkin, Daniel Jacobs, Sergey Kovalev
4 ▬ Oleksandr Usyk* (UKR) | 17-0-0
Notable Wins: Krzysztof Glowacki, Mairis Briedis, Murat Gassiev, Tony Bellew
5 ▬ Naoya Inoue (JPN)* | 19-0-0
Notable Wins: Jamie McDonnell, Juan Carlos Payano, Emmanuel Rodriguez, Nonito Donaire
6 ▬ Errol Spence Jr. (USA) | 25-0-0
Notable Wins: Kell Brook, Lamont Peterson, Mikey Garcia, Shawn Porter
7 ▬ Gennady Golovkin (KAZ) | 40-1-1
Notable Wins: Martin Murray, David Lemieux, Daniel Jacobs, Sergiy Derevyanchenko
8 ▬ Mikey Garcia (USA) | 39-1-0
Notable Wins: Orlando Salido, Adrien Broner, Sergey Lipinets, Robert Easter Jr.
9 ▬ Leo Santa Cruz* (MEX) | 37-1-1
Notable Wins: Abner Mares (x2), Kiko Martinez, Carl Frampton
10 ▬ Juan Francisco Estrada (MEX) | 39-3-0
Notable Wins: Brian Viloria, Giovani Segura, Carlos Cuadras, Srisaket Sor Rungvisai
11 ▬ Daniel Jacobs (USA) | 35-3-0
Notable Wins: Sergio Mora (x2), Peter Quillin, Maciej Sulecki, Sergiy Derevyanchenko
12 ▬ Tyson Fury (GBR) | 29-0-1
Notable Wins: Steve Cunningham, Dereck Chisora (x2), Christian Hammer, Wladimir Klitschko
13 ▲ Deontay Wilder* (USA) | 42-0-1
Notable Wins: Bermane Stiverne (x2), Artur Szpilka, Gerald Washington, Luis Ortiz (x2)
14 ▼ Callum Smith* (GBR) | 25-0-0
Notable Wins: Erik Skoglund, Nieky Holzken, George Groves, John Ryder
15 ▼ Andy Ruiz Jr. (USA) | 33-1-0
Notable Wins: Kevin Johnson, Alexander Dimitrenko, Anthony Joshua
16 ▼ Manny Pacquiao (PHL) | 62-7-2
Notable Wins: Timothy Bradley (x2), Jessie Vargas, Lucas Matthysse, Adrien Broner
17 ▲ Josh Taylor* (GBR) | 16-0-0
Notable Wins: Ohara Davies, Viktor Postol, Ivan Baranchyk, Regis Prograis
18 ▼ Shawn Porter (USA) | 30-3-1
Notable Wins: Adrien Broner, Andre Berto, Danny Garcia, Yordenis Ugas
19 ▼ Anthony Joshua (GBR) | 22-1-0
Notable Wins: Dillian Whyte, Wladimir Klitschko, Joseph Parker, Alexander Povetkin
20 ▼ Josh Warrington (GBR) | 29-0-0
Notable Wins: Kiko Martinez, Lee Selby, Carl Frampton, Kid Galahad
Dropped from list: Sergey Kovalev (20)
This coming Saturday, Andy Ruiz Jr. (#15) will defend the WBA (super), WBO, and IBF heavyweight titles against former champ Anthony Joshua (#19) in Saudi Arabia in a highly-anticipated rematch of their June slugfest. A week later, #1 ranked Terence Crawford will defend his WBO welterweight strap against the undefeated Egidijus Kavaliauskas at Madison Square Garden in New York City.
Comparing fighters across different weight classes is mostly subjective, and everybody has their own opinion. Comment below with who you think deserves to be on the list.