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Rankings: Charlo makes it to No. 2 in 154-pound division

Check out my rankings within each division by clicking on the links below. If there is a lineal champion in the weight class he is ranked No. 1.

Who is the best fighter regardless of weight class? See ESPN's pound-for-pound rankings.

For a list of the current champions in all weight classes, click here.

Note: Results through Dec. 12. In an effort to provide the most up-to-date rankings, ESPN.com's division-by-division boxing rankings will be updated every Tuesday.

More Divisional Rankings

HeavyweightCruiserweightLight heavyweightSuper middleweight

MiddleweightJunior middleweightWelterweightJunior welterweight

LightweightJunior lightweightFeatherweightJunior featherweight

BantamweightJunior bantamweightFlyweightJunior flyweight/Strawweight


1. Canelo Alvarez (48-1-1)

Joe Camporeale/USA TODAY Sports

Alvarez, the face of boxing in the post-Floyd Mayweather/Manny Pacquiao era and 2015 ESPN.com fighter of the year, won the lineal middleweight title by decision against Miguel Cotto in November 2015 in the most anticipated fight of the year other Mayweather-Pacquiao. Alvarez returned May 7 (on Cinco de Mayo weekend) to open the new T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas for his first defense and brutally knocked Amir Khan in the sixth round for the leading KO of the year candidate. Then all attention turned to whether Alvarez would face Gennady Golovkin next, but Alvarez dodged him and instead returned to junior middleweight and knocked out Liam Smith to win a belt in an action-packed, but one-sided fight before 51,240 at AT&T Stadium on Sept. 17 (Mexican Independence Day weekend). A Dec. 10 return was called off because Alvarez suffered a fractured right thumb against Smith. He could be back as soon as February.
Next: TBA

2. Jermall Charlo (25-0)
Houston's Charlo — whose twin brother, Jermell, also holds a 154-pound world title — listened to mandatory challenger Julian "J Rock" Williams trash-talk him for months. But when they finally met on Dec. 10, Charlo showed him who was boss as he dropped him three times in a fifth-round knockout victory. The right uppercut that Charlo dropped Williams with in the fifth round was one of the sweetest punches you will ever see.
Next: TBA

3. Erislandy Lara (23-2-2)
Lara, a former Cuban amateur standout, is a runner who usually stinks out his opponents and makes terrible fights. He has made four defenses against generally weak opposition and No. 5 won't be any different. He will headline a Spike card against long-faded former titleholder Yuri Foreman (34-2), who has in no way, shape or form earned a title fight. Foreman has fought twice since 2013 against woeful opposition and has not faced a legit opponent since he got knocked out by Pawel Wolak in 2011. It is a disgraceful fight.
Next: Jan. 13 vs. Foreman

4. Demetrius Andrade (23-0)
Andrade won a vacant world title by decision against Vanes Martirosyan in 2013 and defended it by impressive seventh-round knockout of mandatory challenger Brian Rose in June 2014. But a series of awful business decisions kept Andrade out of the ring for 16 months and led to his being stripped of the title for inactivity. He finally returned in October, blowing out Argentina's Dario Fabian Pucheta in the second round. That set the stage for a June 11 fight on Showtime against Willie Nelson. Andrade looked fantastic despite fighting for only the second time in two years as he dropped Nelson four times in a 12th-round knockout victory. Andrade was supposed to go to Germany on Nov. 5 to challenge secondary titlist Jack Culcay (22-1) after Culcay's team won a purse bid, but Andrade failed to meet the contract signing deadline and the fight was canceled. The fight will likely go to a second purse bid.
Next: TBA

5. Jermell Charlo (28-0)
Houston's Charlo, twin brother of titleholder Jermall, got a shot at a vacant world title against John Jackson on the same May 21 card on which his brother defended his belt. Jermell had all kinds of problems and was trailing 69-64 on all three scorecards going into the eighth round, when he rallied to suddenly stop Jackson. It was a shaky performance by Charlo, who nonetheless won a belt, making him and his brother the first twins to hold world titles in the same division at the same time.
Next: TBA

6. Austin Trout (30-3)
After back-to-back decision losses to Canelo Alvarez and Erislandy Lara, former titleholder Trout scored four wins in a row (three by knockout), all against decent opposition to land another title shot against Jermall Charlo on May 21. Trout was competitive all the way but lost a unanimous decision.
Next: TBA

7. Vanes Martirosyan (36-3-1)
In Martirosyan's first world title shot, he lost a decision to Demetrius Andrade for a vacant belt in 2013. In his second crack a world title on May 21, Martirosyan also lost a unanimous decision, this time to Erislandy Lara in a fight nearly as unwatchable as their first one, a 2012 title eliminator that ended in a ninth-round technical draw.
Next: TBA

8. Julian Williams (22-1-1)
Philadelphia's "J Rock" dominated unknown Italian Marcello Matano en route to a seventh-round knockout in a title elimination bout on March 5 that made Williams the mandatory challenger for Jermall Charlo. When they met on Dec. 10, Williams — who trash-talked Charlo for months — was not up to the task. Charlo destroyed him with three hard knockdowns in a fifth-round knockout victory that surprised many who viewed the matchup as an even fight.
Next: TBA

9. Charles Hatley (26-1-1)
Dallas' Hatley scored his biggest win in his last fight, when he traveled to Australia in November and knocked out former titleholder Anthony Mundine in the 11th round of an upset. Hatley looms as the mandatory challenger for newly crowned titleholder Jermell Charlo (28-0).
Next: TBA

10. Liam Smith (23-1-1)
England's Smith became the first of the four brothers from his fighting family to win a world title in October 2015 when he scored a huge seventh-round knockout of 2015 Boxcino tournament champion John Thompson to win the belt stripped from Demetrius Andrade. Smith made two successful defenses, which set up a big-money defense against Canelo Alvarez, who returned to the 154-pound division and delivered a beating to Smith on Sept. 17. Alvarez dropped Smith three times and knocked out with a body shot in the ninth round.
Next: TBA


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