Six potential heirs to Mayweather’s pound-for-pound kingpin crown
Serving up another masterpiece at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Floyd Mayweather ensured his supposed retirement got off to an enjoyable start, as he levelled Rocky Marciano’s unbeaten record of 49-0 with a comfortable points victory over Andre Berto in September.
Despite outlining immediate plans to hang up his gloves, claiming he has nothing left to prove in the sport, many believe the flashy five-division world champion will once again be seen in the ring at some stage.
Although, whether ‘Money’ Mayweather has truly graced the ring for a final time, or he’s simply taking another calculated break, he has left the title of pound-for-pound and pay-per-view king up for grabs. But which fighter can step up and claim it?
Here are six that have the potential to do so, either in the next two years or further down the line.
With an appealing mix of charisma, humility and ferociousness, Golovkin has made an unavoidable mark on the sport and reached out to fans worldwide, captivating the middleweight division with his superior showings.
Having previously been unable to attract the big-name match-ups, being the most avoided fighter of any division, the Kazakh bruiser will make his PPV debut against David Lemieux later this year, where he is an overwhelming odds-on 1/14 favourite.
The 33-year-old must be quick to capitalise on Mayweather’s apparent farewell to the ring, but GGG is almost certainly on his way to the top of those pound-for-pound rankings.
After an unleashed reign of destruction, with 20 straight knock-outs and 14 consecutive title defences, the ‘God of War’ possesses all the attributes to climb the P4P ladder and dominantly remain at its summit.
At the age of just 25, this fiery red-haired Mexican holds all the credentials to burst on to the pound-for-pound lists, having already become the face of boxing for one of the sport’s most demanding and passionate crowds in his homeland.
Canelo’s only career defeat has come after 12 rounds against Mayweather, but having penned a new long-term deal with Oscar De La Hoya’s Golden Boy Promotions, super-stardom could await him if he can dispatch Miguel Cotto in November (2/1 to lose).
The shining light of the USA’s 2012 Olympic team, Spence Jr has made an impressive switch to life as a professional welterweight, with the 25-year-old southpaw even being publicly praised by none other than Mayweather himself.
Despite lacking the brashness of his potential predecessor, this American hotshot holds his own fine balance of unassailable confidence and humble approach to fights, something boxing fans may welcome after a decade of witnessing quite the contrast.
Britain has produced many a great heavyweight world champion and another could soon be set to dominate the division, as Joshua continues to devastate anyone who steps in front of his towering 6ft 6in frame.
Next up for the Londoner is Dillian Whyte in December and a 15th successive stoppage could see him challenging for a world title sooner rather than later, though his next opponent and fellow countryman is 8/1 to end such a rampant run.
Now at 31 years of age, Ward could be entering his prime, after recently returning from more than a year out of the sport, due to a high-profile dispute with his former promoter.
Although, the undefeated American made his comeback this summer, expertly disposing Britain’s Paul Smith, having previously handed Carl Froch one his two career losses, and could now revive himself in the ring, if he can focus solely on boxing.
Undoubtedly a truly talented competitor, bearing from Hull, Campbell stormed to Olympic gold for Great Britain at the 2012 games on home soil, with his strategic southpaw abilities seeing him enjoy a successful switch to professional bouts the following year.
The 27-year-old has a long way to go in order to make a big impact in terms of attracting audiences, especially in the United States, where he has already debuted back in 2014 in California. Although, his in-ring talents and drive could see this special fighter go on to be a genuine star, but it’s a big ask.