Pound for pound update January 2020: a new name at the top

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Photo by JOHN GURZINSKI/AFP via Getty Images

9. Manny Pacquiao

62-7-2, 39 KOs
Previous Ranking: N/A

As the ageless wonder, it is hard to express just how brilliant of a fighter the Philippines senator is. A past his prime Pacquiao fighting well above his natural weight is still a top-three fighter in the welterweight division? Go figure. That is not meant as a slight to the other fighters in the division; it is simply a testament to the greatness that is Manny Pacquiao.

Pac-Man was able to clearly defeat Keith Thurman, the welterweight with the best resume, at age 40. He knocked Thurman down and was able to hurt him at points in the fight. It was a truly remarkable performance considering Pacquiao won fighter of the decade last decade.

Pacquiao built his career off of fighting the best opponents regularly. Even in the twilight of his career, he seems to continue to want to do so. It appears as though his next fight will be against either Danny Garcia, Errol Spence Jr. or Shawn Porter, per Kevin Iole.

Even in his 40s, Pacquiao’s willingness to fight the best fighters in his division is something the next generation should take note of. That is how you become an all-time great. Enjoy it while it lasts, because he is a once-in-a-lifetime fighter who will be sorely missed when he is gone.

While he would likely be a sizable underdog to the top two men at 147 (Spence and Crawford), his footwork and boxing ability would give either man problems, and he would be the best opponent either Spence or Crawford has faced, even at his advanced age. Looking past the big two, he would be favored or only a slight underdog to literally anyone else in the division.

Oh, and don’t forget, Floyd Mayweather is planning on a return to boxing in 2020. A rematch with Manny makes sense, because even if it were one-fourth as successful as their first fight, it would still be a huge success financially for everyone involved. And as much as fans may complain at the thought of a rematch, we all know that we will all buy it again. Most of us, anyway.

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