50. Thomas Hauser
That Hauser is the only journalist on the list says plenty about the boom of social media and YouTube, where leading channels are often guilty of regurgitating messages from promoters and fighters without offering any independent voice. Hauser, who will enter the Hall of Fame in 2020, remains an honest and fiercely determined writer whose investigations demand immediate attention from the entire industry.
49. Kathy Duva
One of the consequences of the present superpower battle of broadcasters in the US is that life for independent promoters has become trickier. After Duva revitalised Main Events, Newark, New Jersey, once again became a boxing hotspot. Not so much now. Duva’s biggest name is still Sergey Kovalev, although she also promotes Dmitry Bivol.
48. Robert Smith
AS the General Secretary of the British Boxing Board of Control, the hard-working Smith has overseen a boom period for the sport in the UK. He’s had to make some difficult decisions and been at the heart of investigations that have seen standards rise in Britain. However, with limited financial resources, Smith cannot implement everything he would like to and, consequently, can be at the mercy of outside interference.
47. Nisse Sauerland
With big brother Kalle controlling the World Boxing Super Series, Nisse has been in charge of the main firm, Sauerland Event. Having led an impressive expansion into Denmark and Scandanavia in recent years, the German market is short on stars right now, although they have Croatian heavyweight hope Filip Hrgovic on the books.
46. Simon Green
Green was chief executive of BoxNation in its very early days, before becoming the head of BT Sport in 2012. Initially the channels boxing output was small, but as the company has grown, boxing, through a contract with Frank Warren, has become a major part of its coverage. The launch of BT Sport Box Office underlined their intentions. The channel has emerged as the only serious contender to Sky Sports in the UK.
45. Kim Sumbler
It is the steps that New York is taking regarding attempts to make the sport safer for boxers that have made Kim Sumbler’s spell as New York State Athletic Commission executive director revolutionary. Rather than sweeping the Mago tragedy under the carpet, New York acted, implementing some of the most advanced policies for tackling concussion and head injuries, despite the protests of some “traditionalists”.
44. Bob Bennett
Is there a crisis going on in Nevada boxing? And if there is, do the people in charge know or care? Nevada could have the pick of the world’s top officials, but stick to their own, with only a few occasional additions. This wouldn’t matter if they were the best officials, but they are not, as a string of controversies in recent years show. In the face of controversy, Bennett is always quick to back the official, and not the fighter.
43. Katie Taylor
One of the poster stars for a new wave of women boxers, the undisputed world lightweight champion has made it to the top of the sport on her owns terms, focussing on her ability as a boxer and nothing else. The 2012 Olympic champion seems to have no interest in fame or being a celebrity and, despite being in her 30s, she expects to be around for another five years at least.
42. Claressa Shields
Some people smart at the idea of Shields calling herself the greatest female boxer of all time, though at the age of just 24 it is difficult to imagine what more she could have done. A double Olympic champion, a two-weight world champion, comfortably unifying the world middleweight title by beating Christina Hammer. If they can make a match with Cecilia Braekhus, the welterweight champ, that could be the first genuine female super fight.
41. Freddie Roach
Still best known for his work with Manny Pacquiao, Roach remains the go-to trainer for top-class fighters wanting a change or hot prospects needing an experienced head to guide them. Roach remains as committed to and involved in the sport as ever.