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Floyd Mayweather first, Manny Pacquiao second in NC Top 10

HBO Sports president Ken Hershman told a group

HBO Sports president Ken Hershman told a group of boxing writers during his introductory news conference at HBO's Manhattan office that the back-and-forth between Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather has become an obstacle to making other bouts. Credit: Getty Images

1. Floyd Mayweather Jr., welterweight (42-0): Floyd is still No.1, especially after Manny Pacquiao's shaky performance against Juan Manuel Marquez. The question is who will "Money" fight next. Mayweather announced recently that he will fight on May 5. The hope is that it is against Pacquiao. 

2. Manny Pacquiao, welterweight, (54-3-2): The WBO welterweight champ won via majority decision against Juan Manuel Marquez. It wasn't highway robbery, as some have suggested, but Pacquiao didn't look great and the fight could've easily been scored a draw.

3. Sergio Martinez, middleweight, (48-2-2): Martinez earned this ranking with dominating wins over Kelly Pavlik, Paul Williams, Serhiy Dzinziruk and Darren Barker. Who's next?

4. Nonito Donaire, bantamweight, (27-1): Donaire, the WBC and WBO champ, dominated Omar Andres Narvaez in October. He made himself a household name in boxing after a second-round knockout of Fernando Montiel in February.

5. Wladimir Klitschko, heavyweight, (56-3): Klitschko, the IBF, WBO and WBA champ dominated the No.3 heavyweight in the world in David Haye with relative ease last summer. The dearth of quality heavyweights notwithstanding, you can’t ignore his results.

6. Amir Khan, junior welterweight (26-1): Amir Khan has some serious skills and could move up on this list if he handles Lamont Peterson in Washington D.C. on December 10. It could set up a bout with Timothy Bradley in the spring.

7. Andre Ward, super middleweight, (23-0): Ward hasn’t broken a sweat in the ring in over four years, with easy wins over Arthur Abraham, Sakio Bika, Allan Green and Mikkel Kessler. He’ll face Carl Froch in Showtime’s Super Six final in December. An easy win in the fight will vault him up on this list.

8. Yuriorkis Gamboa, Featherweight, (21-0): There’s little debate over who the best featherweight in the world is. Gamboa destroyed Jorge Solis last March and barely broke a sweat in a win over Ponce de Leon at the Boardwalk on September 10.

9. Juan Manuel Marquez, lightweight, (52-6-1): Marquez gave Pacquiao all he had. There are some who believe he was robbed. Although the Neutral doesn't believe that necessarily, the fight could've easily been a draw or in Marquez's favor, 115-113. Not sure what he does next.

10. Timothy Bradley, junior welterweight, (28-0): He’s considered by most to be the best fighter in what is arguably the best weight class in the world. He shook off a lot of ring rust in a dominating win over Joel Casamayor on the Pacquiao-Marquez card last Saturday. Will he finally step into the ring with Khan next spring?

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