Here's a look at five pointless boxing debates currently making the rounds:
Is Floyd Mayweather Good Or Bad For The Sport?
Whether you find the five-division world champ to be boring and obnoxious or entertaining and misunderstood, there's no debating his ability to generate sales. After six years at the top of the pay-per-view food chain, denying his market value is like trying to argue whether McDonald's hamburgers are any good. Like them or not, McDonald's sells billions of them and, like him or not, Mayweather is not turning off consumers. If you think record sales figures and unprecedented levels of mainstream coverage for the sport are bad things, then there's really no point in trying to engage in a reasonable debate.
Is Boxing Dying or Dead?
This is an old and tired refrain pushed around by lazy writers, some jaded fans, and those looking to make a quick buck in the MMA business. The reality is that boxing is in a good place right now and numbers are up across the board. Outside the United States, the sport is enjoying an explosion of worldwide interest with major arena cards playing to sold out crowds in just about every nook and cranny of the world. Even if boxing was dying at one point, it can only be assumed that the sport has made a quick and miraculous recovery.
Can The Greats Of Today Beat The Greats Of Yesterday?
Until somebody builds a time machine and brings selections of fighters from different eras to meet one another, this will forever be the most pointless of fan discussions. How can anyone truly know whether the size and physical strength of guys like Wladimir and Vitali Klitschko could trump the grit and old school knowledge of Ali and Frazier? And this is assuming a fighter from today could go back in time and keep the advantages of being a modern fighter or an old-timer could be brought to the present and keep his same level of grit and ring-learned old school tactics.
The Pound-for-Pound Conundrum
Pound-for-Pound lists are fun, just as long as they are kept in their proper perspective as little more than fantasy league-type fluff. When fans and media start taking these silly lists seriously is when all common sense leaves the discussion and grown men begin to argue about pure science fiction. When making a pound-for-pound list, one is to rank fighters based on who could win if all were of an equal weight. Now, are we to assume that Floyd Mayweather, as a heavyweight, would be able to keep the speed and timing that makes him special? Are we to imagine Wladimir Klitschko keeping his strength and ring presence as a junior welterweight? Ultimately, pound-for-pound lists only tell us about the personal preferences of those making the lists.
Which Boxing Rankings Are Most Reliable?
When looking for 100% reliable rankings in the sport of boxing, the journey begins and ends with the number zero. Forget the four recognized sanctioning bodies; their rankings look like a how-to guide on how not to make fair and balanced world rankings. Buried in politics and downright puzzling decisions, the IBF, WBA, WBC, and WBO have no credibility when it comes to ranking fighters fairly. Formula-based rankings, like the ones used in Boxrec.com are based on a solid premise, but executed with the wrong criteria in mind. And opinion-based rankings like those in Ring Magazine and various other websites are inherently flawed because they are based on opinion that can easily be influenced by a fighter's level of TV exposure, past successes, and by the voter's own personal biases. Until there can be a fair and subjective formula for ranking fighters in each of the seventeen divisions, no rankings are truly reliable.******************
Paul Magno was a licensed official in the state of Michoacan, Mexico and a close follower of the sport for more than thirty years. His work can also be found on Fox Sports and as Editor-in-Chief of The Boxing Tribune. In the past, Paul has done work for Inside Fights, The Queensberry Rules and Eastside Boxing. For breaking news, additional analysis, and assorted crazy commentary, follow him on Facebook, @TheBoxingTribune or on Twitter, @BoxingBTBC.
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