Khan’s top-10 stay could be short
US boxing expert Kevin Iole takes a look at this week's rankings, with Amir Khan squeezing in after his victory over Zab Judah.
Amir Khan’s knockout victory over Zab Judah on Saturday was enough to squeeze him past featherweight Yuriorkis Gamboa and into 10th place in the new Yahoo! Sports boxing rankings.
Khan’s stay among the boxing elite may be brief, however.
Khan wouldn’t even be in the Top 10 were Floyd Mayweather Jr. eligible. But because it has been more than a year since he last fought, Mayweather is ineligible. He’ll regain eligibility immediately after he fights Victor Ortiz for a welterweight title on Sept. 17 in Las Vegas and should jump back into the rankings in the next vote after the fight at no worse than No. 2.
Mayweather, alone, isn’t Khan’s only problem in holding onto his spot in the ratings. He plans to fight once more at super lightweight before jumping to welterweight in April. Though Khan has no opponent yet for the December fight, it’s most likely he’ll meet the winner of the Aug. 27 bout in San Jose, Calif., between Robert Guerrero and Marcos Maidana.
Khan needs to root badly for Guerrero, because he’s already beaten Maidana and another win over the Argentinean won’t give him the kind of bounce he wants. That’s particularly critical because when he finally does move to welterweight in April 2012, he’ll face a lower-level opponent the first time out.
As a result, he’s got the looming re-entry of Mayweather into the poll and the potential of two bouts that won’t do much to turn on the voters. Khan’s a talented young man and likely will spend a lot of time by the time his career is done in the Top 10. In the short term, though, he shouldn’t be too comfortable because there is a very good chance his stay will be brief.
And with that, it’s on to the latest rankings:
1. Manny Pacquiao
2. Sergio Martinez
3. Nonito Donaire Jr.
4. Juan Manuel Marquez
5. Andre Ward
6. Wladimir Klitschko
7. Timothy Bradley
8. Lucian Bute
9. Bernard Hopkins
10. Amir Khan