Boxing Power Rankings: Bute, Donaire, Khan, Pacquiao, Ward, Mayweather and More

By Nick Tylwalk

There was boxing during the past month, but not much of it, if any, involved anyone in the top 10 of any weight class. The year in the sweet science is off to a slow start indeed, and news of Andre Berto's arm injury postponing his rematch with Victor Ortiz doesn't help.

No fights equals very little movement in our patented (not really) Power Rankings, but we're rolling out the monthly list anyway. Why? Because we care, darn it.

Our number two guy Nonito Donaire will look to shake the sport out of its doldrums this very Saturday. Several other members of the list will be in action by mid-March, so things will look up soon enough.

Oh, and in case you're new around here, this isn't a pound-for-pound list. Here's our last one of those, and here's an explanation of sorts about the Power Rankings.

The list awaits!

Boxer Power Rankings - February 2012

1. Lucian Bute - 20.89 - Andre Ward's people seem to want Bute to "prove himself" by fighting someone like Carl Froch or Mikkel Kessler. Hopefully he does, not because someone else thinks he should, but just because those would make for good fights.

2. Nonito Donaire - 18.43 - As mentioned above, the Filipino Flash will be the first elite boxer to test himself in 2012. He'll be looking for a good performance against Wilfredo Vazquez Jr. to get back some of the buzz he lost in the second half of 2011.

3. Vitali Klitschko - 18.36 - Despite hitting the big four-oh, big brother Klitschko doesn't expect much of a drop-off in his skills this year. That could be bad news for Dereck Chisora, the younger but smaller challenger he'll be facing on February 18.

4. Saul "Canelo" Alvarez - 18.10 - It seems like barely a week goes by without Canelo's name getting attached to one big fight or another. He won't be facing Floyd Mayweather in May, but since he's one of the hottest names in the sport, he's still going to end up with a big payday when it's all said and done.

5. Amir Khan - 15.68 - King Khan seems to need the other names in and around his weight class to settle their plans before he knows what he'll be doing next. I would not be opposed to seeing him in a rematch with Lamont Peterson.

6. Yuriorkis Gamboa - 14.18 - Understandably, Gamboa's handlers didn't seem to crazy about their man going up in weight to take on thunder-fisted lightweight Brandon "Bam Bam" Rios. Maybe we could all send out subliminal messages to make them reconsider, because that would be an explosive match-up.

7. Sergio Martinez - 14.14 - Maravilla returns to the ring on March 17 to face Matthew Macklin. After that, let's cross our fingers and hope he gets the truly huge fight someone with his talent deserves.

8. Wladimir Klitschko - 11.83 - Because absolutely no one demanded it, Wlad will fight Jean-Marc Mormeck on March 3. Nothing really to add to that.

9. Manny Pacquiao - 11.80 - Even the head of HBO boxing is saying Pacquiao needs to fight Floyd Mayweather by early 2013 or forget about it. The "will they or won't they" saga is getting old, but at least some boxing fans will be happy to watch Pac-Man fight in June while waiting to see how it ends.

10. Andre Ward - 11.16 - It would be nice to see Ward fight someone top notch in the first half of the year, though he's already fought everyone worth fighting not named Lucian Bute at 168. A rematch with Kessler, perhaps?

The next seven: Robert Guerrero, Timothy Bradley, Felix Sturm, Andre Berto, Lamont Peterson, Juan Manuel Marquez, Miguel Cotto 

Get more great boxing news and analysis over at Boxing Watchers.

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