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The Art of the Knockout: Boxing’s best KO Artists today

BY David A. Avila ON April 25, 2007
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With knockout artist Acelino Freitas of Brazil poised to meet WBA lightweight titleholder Juan Diaz, it may be the perfect time to list the 12 most dangerous knockout punchers in the world today.

Below are fighters who possess the ability to win a fight with a single punch. Those on this list have accomplished knockouts against the elite prizefighters of the world. There are many other fighters with great knockout records, but have yet to accomplish knockouts against the elite competition.

Here are the 12 best knockout punchers in the world today in no particular order:

Diego “Chico” Corrales (40-5, 33 KOs) Las Vegas, Nev. – In his first fight in the welterweight division he happened to pick the guy with probably the best chin in the 147-pound weight class and promptly lost. But he gets props for being the only guy to actually knock out granite chinned Jose Luis Castillo.

Acelino “Popo” Freitas (38-1, 32 KOs) Bahia, Brazil – The knockouts are not coming as frequently only because he’s fighting mostly world-class fighters. But his 29 straight KOs at the beginning of his career put him on this list. Some of those guys who were put to sleep were Javier Jauregui and Jorge Barrios.

Edwin “Venom” Valero (21-0, 21 KOs) Tokyo, Japan – The Venezuela-born southpaw knockout artist has never allowed a fight to go to a decision. Only one opponent lasted more than two rounds but he eventually was stopped cold too in the 10th. Valero, the WBA junior lightweight titleholder, has natural speed to go with his power.

Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao (44-3-2, 35 KOs) General Santos, Philippines –  Pacman is like his nickname he just gobbles up opponents with his blistering speed and left-handed power. Now the Filipino superstar has developed a solid right hook and seems more devastating. It doesn’t matter if the opposition is world class or not, his left hand is a tremendous equalizer.

Edison “Pantera” Miranda (28-1, 24 KOs) Buenaventura, Colombia – The Colombian middleweight barely makes this list because he’s failed to knock out the world class guys like the other fighters on this list. But he packs tremendous power and usually drops his opponent even if they survive for the rest of the fight. The big test comes next month against Kelly Pavlik.

Kelly “The Ghost” Pavlik (30-0, 27 KOs) Youngstown, Ohio – The Ghost knocked out Mexico’s middleweight Jose Luis Zertuche and that was not easy to do. In fact, Pavlik is the only fighter today that can make that claim. Plus he can box. His next bout is against Pantera on May 19. That bout features power against power. Who’s going to blink first?

Vic “Raging Bull” Darchinyan (28-0, 22 KOs) Sydney, Australia – IBF flyweight titleholder Darchinyan packs a left hand that seems to be loaded with dynamite, but that’s all he’s needed so far to annihilate the opposition. He’s too strong for the flyweights, he needs to go up a division where the opposition will give him a true test. There are plenty of 115-pound junior bantamweights like Jose Navarro, Fernando Montiel and Martin Castillo waiting for him.

Alex Munoz (29-2, 27 KOs) Miranda, Venezuela – He fights on May 3 in Japan for the WBA junior bantamweight world title against Nobuo Nashiro who’s never been stopped. This might be the time the Japanese fighter gets dropped because Munoz can really hit. Just a few fighters have ever come out of the fight with Munoz standing up. He’s a two-fisted time bomb.

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