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Bad Left Hook Boxing Rankings: December 2012

Scott Christ and Ryan Bivins rank the world's best fighters in each weight class.

Martin Rose
Scott Christ is the managing editor of Bad Left Hook and has been covering boxing for SB Nation since 2006.

The BLH boxing rankings are back, with a little bit of difference. These are no longer just my own rankings, but a combination effort between myself and Ryan Bivins.

The rankings can be viewed here, but here are the top-ranked fighters in each division (there are probably few surprises, but at least one):

Heavyweight: Wladimir Klitschko
Cruiserweight: Ola Afolabi
Light Heavyweight: Chad Dawson
Super Middleweight: Andre Ward
Middleweight: Sergio Martinez
Junior Middleweight: Floyd Mayweather
Welterweight: Timothy Bradley
Junior Welterweight: Juan Manuel Marquez
Lightweight: Adrien Broner
Super Featherweight: Takashi Uchiyama
Featherweight: Orlando Salido
Super Bantamweight: Nonito Donaire
Bantamweight: Anselmo Moreno
Super Flyweight: Tepparith Kokietgym
Flyweight: Brian Viloria
Junior Flyweight: Roman Gonzalez
Minimumweight: Kazuto Ioka

The rankings will be updated once per month, usually on the first Tuesday or Wednesday, but next month with New Year's Day falling on a Tuesday, we'll be updating on January 9.

What I wanted to do was a consensus rankings including our own, plus various outlets, like The RING, ESPN.com, BoxRec, Boxing Monthly, Boxing News, etc., but there were too many problems with that. Here are some examples:

  • Not all outlets have the same criteria for things like inactivity. Joseph Agbeko has been inactive for a year with nothing on the horizon, but he is ranked still by The RING and ESPN.com.
  • It's hard to set a good, firm date to update. RING and ESPN update weekly, and BoxRec is always being tinkered with, but the monthly stuff can be trickier; a lot of these things wouldn't take into account an early month event like Cotto-Trout until their next issue. We have the luxury of doing that.
  • There aren't enough reliable, sane rankings out there to do it the way I wanted to.

So after spending a while compiling all of that and just not being particularly happy with it -- BoxRec's often too-ridiculous rankings (Rey Migreno as No. 9 flyweight!) playing a fairly large part -- and not having enough data to prevent a shitload of ties, I just decided to narrow it down to myself and Ryan for now. Maybe, eventually, we'll have more voters, and expand into a something bigger, or the consensus thing I wanted to do, but for now, it doesn't work as well as I want it to, and I don't want to half-ass an idea I've been kicking around for a while, and see being cool if it can actually work, rather than just sort of work. I'd rather be happy with the two of us and a solid batch of rankings than something I'm not totally pleased with that is better in my brain than in reality.

Enjoy, discuss, debate, all that.

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