Andre Ward out to master 'show-and-tell' boxing
Oakland boxer Andre Ward found himself in a bit of a verbal scuffle this week as he engaged in conversation with Carl Froch, his fellow "Super Six" super-middleweight title finalist, about their bout Oct. 29.
Ward maintained his demeanor of keeping things simple: He is 24-0, the last active U.S. gold medalist in the sport, and he is coming off an impressive triumph against Arthur Abraham in Carson that makes him the favorite over the U.K.'s Froch (28-1, 20 knockouts) when they square off in Atlantic City, N.J.
"I'm not into fabricating my reputation like he is -- that sort of thing sets me off," said Ward, 27. "I saw his [Andre] Dirrell fight. It was close. His trainer told him in the 11th round he needed to work hard to win. [Froch] was on both of his knees before the [split] decision was announced. He acts now like it was an easy win, and now he's saying he took Arthur Abraham's soul.
"I deal with the truth, to keep showing I'm the best. I'm a show-and-tell fighter. Sugar Ray Robinson didn't create a spectacle before his fights. He just fought and let his actions speak.
"But I realize that's the era we're in now -- 'I'm going to do this, I'm going to do that,' -- we'll just see what happens."
Showtime will televise the finale, and Ward is positioned strongly in the sport with a victory to seek either someone such as middleweight champion Sergio Martinez or the winner of the Bernard Hopkins-Chad Dawson fight Oct. 15 at Staples Center.
"I guess it speaks to what's on the line," Ward said of getting temperamental with Froch. "The tangible hardware is what I want -- to defend my WBA belt for the fourth time, get the WBC belt I've always wanted, and the big Super Six cup. There couldn't be more on the line.
"I want to keep showing I'm the best. Obviously, I want to win spectacularly. I'm a fearless competitor, and I believe his bravado is also his weakness, because he won't respect me enough. I respect his strength, but I'm not enamored with it.
"I feel like I've done things the right way to get to this point. That's what I'm hanging my hat on."
Ward has already begun training for the bout in Oakland, where he said he will remain for the duration of his camp.
-- Lance Pugmire
Photo: Andre Ward gestures during a prefight weigh-in in Oakland in 2009. Credit: Paul Sakuma / Associated Press