We're sandwiched now by a few weekends of boxers who, like Manny Pacquiao, have somehow, some way tried to -- or actually have -- fought the best, most obvious opponent... and some who, like David Haye -- one way or the other -- haven't fought the best, most obvious opponent.
This is important stuff, friends. Maybe you're into boxing because you want to see people club each other over the head, regardless of who those people are. Maybe you're addicted to the soap opera-like petty grudges between promoters, networks, managers and fighters. Maybe you have a physical crush on HBO unofficial scorer Harold Lederman. More than anything, though, what I want to see is the best fighting the best.
Sirs and madams! Lords and ladies! This calls for A LIST! (Huzzah.)
Some of the boxers who made the good side of the list -- like our two combatants this coming weekend, Paul Williams and Sergio Martinez -- might have had to be cajoled a fair amount into fighting the best opponent. No matter. They did it, or tried.
Some of the boxers who earlier this year might have been on the bad side of the list have recently availed themselves of opportunities to correct their behavior, such as junior welterweight Amir Khan, who faces his best, most obvious opponent in Marcos Maidana next month.
As always, the list is drawn from Ring's ratings. If some junior featherweight ranked #15 by the WBO ain't fighting somebody he should be, it's hard to get too rankled about it. It's the elite fighters, the truly excellent ones, I care about. So I'll do four each, then throw out some honorable mentions, and -- as always, squared -- you should make your own nominees.