Issue Letters Premium

The 10 pound-for-pound hardest punchers in boxing today

Deontay Wilder
Wilder leaves Ortiz flat on the canvas Stephanie Trapp/TGB
Deontay Wilder showed exactly why he is the hardest pound-for-pound puncher in boxing on Saturday, but who else can attempt to claim this title?

1. Deontay Wilder, 42-0-1 (41 KOs)

If it wasn’t a known fact before Saturday’s demolition of Luis Ortiz, it is now: WBC heavyweight champion Wilder, he of 41 knockouts from 42 wins, is the hardest one-shot hitter in the sport. Some now even believe he is the hardest puncher of all time.

Deontay Wilder
Wilder left Tyson Fury on the floor, not knowing he would rise (Esther Lin/Showtime)

2. Naoya Inoue, 19-0 (16)

What Inoue lacks in stature he more than makes up for in punch power and explosiveness. A world champion at light-flyweight, super-flyweight and bantamweight, the Japanese star has 16 stoppages from 19 fights and has on four of his last five fights inside three rounds.  

Inoue goes the distance with Nonito Donaire (Naoki Fukuda)

3. Artur Beterbiev, 15-0 (15)

Beterbiev, the WBC and IBF light-heavyweight king, is a Russian destroyer who has stopped every one of his 15 opponents so far as a pro. Last time out he halted fellow puncher Oleksandr Gvozdyk inside 10 rounds to add the Ukrainian’s WBC crown to the IBF belt he already owned.

Artur Beterbiev
Beterbiev trades with Oleksandr Gvozdyk (Mikey Williams/Top Rank)

4. Gennady Golovkin, 40-1-1 (35)

Once the leader of this sort of list, Golovkin, boasts a staggering 35 knockouts from 40 fights but has seen his ratio drop ever so slightly in recent years. Hard fights against the likes of Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez, Daniel Jacobs and Sergiy Derevyanchenko go some way to explaining why.

Gennady Golovkin
Golovkin breaks Kell Brook’s face (Action Images/Peter Cziborra)

5. Gervonta Davis, 22-0 (21)

Rough and raw, both in and out of the ring, Davis remains a fearsome puncher when firing on all cylinders. He has ended 21 of his 22 pro fights inside schedule and hasn’t had to rely on scorecards since a six-rounder against German Meraz in 2014.

Davis lands a hook on Francisco Fonseca

6. Miguel Berchelt, 37-1 (33)

Only Takashi Miura has managed to hear the final bell against Berchelt, the current WBC super-featherweight champion, since 2012. The Mexican has wrapped up four of his last five defences inside six rounds.

Berchelt beats up Jason Sosa

7. Luis Nery, 30-0 (24)

As well a being a controversial and polarising figure, Mexican bad boy Nery is a very hard puncher. He has stopped each of his last 11 opponents, a total of 24 in 30 fights, and was the WBC champion at bantamweight.

Luis Nery
Nery wades into Shinsuke Yamanaka (Naoki Fukuda)

8. Murat Gassiev, 26-1 (19)

Before Oleksandr Usyk got his hands on him and defused all that power in 2018, Gassiev was recognised as one of the very best punchers in the sport and has secured 10 of his 11 previous wins via knockout.

Gassiev attacks Krzysztof Wlodarczyk in 2017

9. Yuniel Dorticos, 24-1 (22)

A Cuban cruiserweight with missiles as fists, Dorticos has managed to end 22 of his 24 pro wins inside the distance and has gone power vs. power with some of the biggest punchers in the division.

Dorticos lands a right hand against Andrew Tabiti

10. Anthony Joshua, 22-1 (21)

Although the wheels came off for Joshua in June against Andy Ruiz Jnr, he remains one of the harder punchers in boxing today. In fact, only New Zealand’s Joseph Parker has managed to take Joshua the distance since the Olympic champion turned professional in 2013.

Eddie Hearn
Joshua overpowered Wladimir Klitschko in 2017

1 Comment

Click here to post a comment

  • When you examine Wilder’s record more closely he is less impressive because of the quality of his opposition. Many of the boxers below him on this list have faced much sterner opposition.

Boxing news – Newsletter

Current Issue