The welterweight division historically has always been a glorious division in the sport of boxing, Floyd Mayweather, Ray Leonard, Ray Robinson, Pernell Whittaker, Oscar De La Hoya to name but a few of the all time greats that operated at 147lbs at time or another during their illustrious careers.
Today’s crop of welterweights include undefeated champions, multi time champions, Hall Of Fame elects and exciting prospects, let’s take a look at the year 2020 for the 147lb boxers & what awaits them in 2021
Best Fight Of 2020
Errol Spence Jr’s dominant victory over former WBC champion Danny Garcia in December was particularly eye catching, especially considering the undefeated Spence’s near fatal car accident leaving many boxing fans wondering if he’d ever be seen in a boxing ring again, let alone competing at the very top of the rankings.
The control, the shot selection, the jab, all the attributes that make Errol Spence one of the very best welterweights on the planet were on show & we once again cross our fingers & toes in the hope a much over due clash with Terence Crawford takes place in 2021.
Overview of Division
Two of the very best names in the division failed to box in 2020 in Manny Pacquaio & Keith Thurman, after the former’s victory over the latter in late 2019, Mikey Garcia was victorious in only his second outing in the weight class against Jessie Vargas, Yordenis Ugas boxed twice & won twice winning the ‘regular’ WBA title via a split decision victory over Abel Ramos, Shawn Porter picked up a win against Sebastian Formella whilst British prospect Connor Benn was equally impressive with a win against the same opponent, Amir Khan & Ray Robinson were both absent from the ring whilst WBO champion Terence Crawford defeated faded, former IBF champion Kell Brook in November.
Current Top 3
1. Errol Spence Jr - With his win over Danny Garcia adding to his overall, in my opinion, better resume I think the ‘Truth’ sits atop the division currently
2. Terence Crawford - ‘Bud’ can consider himself slightly unfortunate not to make the no.1 spot as he misses out by the smallest of margins, his win over an over-the-hill Brook being less impressive a win than his rival Spence’s win against Garcia
3. Manny Pacquaio - What more can be said about the great Manny Pacquaio, that he is in his early forties & still a mainstay around the top of the 147lb pile is testament enough to include him in my top 3
Must See Fight
Without a doubt the fight to be made in this division is Errol Spence v Terence Crawford, for too long the argument for who is the very best welterweight on the planet has rumbled on with little by way of a resolution given the different promoters & tv networks involved
This fight is up there with Anthony Joshua v Tyson Fury as the two greatest fights to be made in all of boxing in 2021, we can not have a repeat of the drawn out, tedious Mayweather v Pacquaio saga from a few years back
There is a number of exciting young prospects including Josh Kelly, Jaron Ennis & Conor Benn but my choice is Vergil Ortiz Jr.
At 22 years of age Ortiz has acquired a 16-0 record with all 16 wins coming via KO. He’s a power puncher with fantastic boxing fundamentals, his sole victory in 2020 was a stoppage win against gatekeeper Samuel Vargas who’d previously only been halted by Danny Garcia & Errol Spence, the most recent of those stoppages being in 2016. I’d like to see Ortiz in with the likes of seasoned operator Joseito Lopez or maybe Sergey Lipnets in 2021 to position himself for a world title challenge in 2022.
Luke of SimBoxx