Carl Froch: Programmed to Lose

By "Old Yank" Schneider on August 14, 2011
Carl Froch: Programmed to Lose
Carl Froch shows up to fight and manages to win—win a lot (Howard Schatz)

Relying too heavily on statistics runs the risk of losing sight of virtually everything that cannot be reduced to numbers…

Carl Froch is programmed to lose the Super Six Finals this October 29th at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City and lose big against Andre Ward. Some fighters show up to fight and others show up to win a fight (there is an important difference). Carl Froch shows up to fight and manages to win—win a lot. So before you send a hoard of locusts to invade my Jockey shorts please recognize that every fan should have Froch ranked in their top-five at 168 pounds (he’s my number three at super middleweight behind Andre Ward and Lucian Bute). If you’ve got him ranked at #1, all the power to you—you might be right. Nevertheless, in spite of his deserved ranking and great record, he does not show up to win a fight and he’s programmed to lose to Andre Ward. You are about to learn why.

There are lies, damn lies, and then there are statistics. Relying too heavily on statistics runs the risk of losing sight of virtually everything that cannot be reduced to numbers. Stats have their limitations. But every once in a while stats are so revealing that they simply cannot and should not be ignored. And when we are talking about a fighter being programmed to lose, numbers are the language of programming—stark zeros and ones—on and off—win and lose.

If I hear the tired cliché “styles make fights” one more time in the fight game I think I’ll quit being a fan. It is without a doubt the most overused phrase in the game. It seems whenever a fan or pundit can’t quite come up with a logical formula for justifying a prediction he relies on the tired cliché. It is the handicappers “out”. When all the handicapping logic is exhausted, the tired, old cliché gets dragged out and it buys an excuse for why a prediction could go the other way. Can we find any handicappers with brass ones left in the business anymore? Well this bout is not about “styles make fights”; it is about how Froch is programmed to lose this bout and Ward is programmed to win it.

Indeed both Froch and Ward have contrasting styles. And it is a worthwhile exercise to examine the differences. But before we do that we are going to digress a bit. We are going to examine how a fight is won.

Fundamentally a fight can be won in only a limited number of ways. You can score a knockout; you can score a TKO; you can win a decision of a few varieties (unanimous, split, majority, technical); and you can win by disqualification of your opponent. And within the boundaries of this limited list is the basic reason why Andre Ward is programmed to win and Carl Froch is programmed to lose. The source-code to this programmed outcome is based on the “decision”.

I repeat: Some fighters show up to fight and others show up to win a fight. If you are exclusively showing up to fight, then you are likely looking to rough up your opponent in a fight—programmed to end up with a win of the KO, TKO or unanimous decision variety. If you are programmed to win, you are showing up to win each and every round as if it is the only championship bout that matters—you are programmed to win one round at a time as if the bout is a collection of 12, three-minute championship bouts. If the KO or TKO comes, it comes. But if it does not, this kind of fighter is programmed to win because he understands how a professional boxing match is scored. Give 10 points to the winner of the round and give the loser of the round 9 or less. At the end of the bout (should a KO, TKO or DQ not happen), the fighter with at least two of three judges seeing him with more points wins. In a sense, gamming the system is being programmed to win.

Ok! Alright! Enough with the boxing primer in Scoring 101! I get it!

But do you get it?

Let’s examine the last 60 rounds for Froch and the last 60 rounds for Ward. Why the last 60 rounds? Because it is arguably the highest level of competition the fighters have faced in their careers to date.

As promised, we should examine their styles because it is useful to do so. For the most part, Froch has been a come-forward fighter demonstrating fine footwork. He works off a good jab (from a hands down position) and is a reasonably effective aggressor and counterpuncher. He has a full arsenal of punches and has a reasonable defense. He is quick to retaliate with combinations when a fighter gets a temporary advantage. His speed is decent. His power should not be questioned. He can take a punch and and has heart (demonstrated by getting up off a canvas to win). In fact in virtually every aspect of the skills department (and a broad collection of intangibles) Froch is reasonably good to solid. But he’s not stellar at anything. Instead he’s damn good at it all (without any glaring weaknesses) and that presents a solid but not stellar total package as a fighter. He’s been in rock ‘em-sock ‘em bouts (against Kessler for example) and he’s been in bouts where he’s displayed a fine ring IQ popping from the outside (Abraham). He’s solid enough with this total package to have earned a spot in the Super Six Finals and he is inarguably in the top-five 168 pounders plying their craft today.

Andre Ward on the other hand is stellar in a few skills departments but is not a total package. Ward is an offensive chameleon; an aggressive initiator or counterpuncher—whatever his adjustments dictate he need be. He is stellar defensively—Pernell Whitaker-like (but not quite an all-time great at it). His ring movement is stellar. Few fighters can move in so many directions while punching or defending as Ward can. He can potshot from the outside (Abraham) or mix it up on the inside (Green and Bika). He has an apparent weakness in the power department. His ring IQ is unquestionable. His speed is perhaps the fastest of those that entered the Super Six Tournament (with Andre Dirrell perhaps arguably faster). He too is inarguably in the top-five at 168 pounds.

Both fighters are very hard workers and both have great stamina.

Perhaps, statistically when lining up skills and level of skills and totality of the package vs. stellar traits, it all looks fairly even on paper.

Why then is Froch programmed to lose and Ward programmed to win?

Let’s start from the end of the bout and then jump back to the beginning of it. It will end with a decision—I already told you that the source code for this programmed outcome is based on the decision. Few pundits, fans or even casual observers see the bout ending in a KO or TKO win for either fighter (barring a head clash that creates a fight-stopping cut). Ward likely lacks the power to stop Froch and Froch lacks the stellar speed necessary to penetrate Ward’s stellar defense—neither fighter will likely score the KO. That leaves us with either a draw or a decision of one variety or another (UD, SD, MD, TD). But before we can begin this bout we need to examine the prior 60 rounds of each fighter as promised.

Froch loses rounds—he loses a lot of them. Ward does not lose rounds—he loses nearly none of them. Froch will do what Froch does—he will show up to win a bout. Ward will do what he does—he will show up to win 12, three-minute championship bouts—one round at a time. Froch will be looking to find a way to come out on top after 12 and Ward will be “gamming” the 10-point scoring system one round at a time. And that is why Froch is programmed to lose this bout and Ward is programmed to win.

You doubt me? Let’s go to those stats I promised.

Over the past 60 rounds we have scorecards from three judges in each bout to examine. For Froch, when we examine the scorecard from each bout that shows the greatest number of rounds lost, we see Froch losing 30 of his last 60 rounds. That’s a ton of rounds to be losing on official scorecards. Froch appears to mentally approach a bout quite differently than Ward. Again, Froch shows up to win a fight; and he wins a lot of them—enough to rank him anywhere from #1 to #5 at 168 pounds. But losing rounds when your opponent is Ward is a different game.

Ward, over his last 60 rounds (when examining the best cards in his favor), has lost only three rounds in total (seven if you look at the worst cards). Ward simply approaches a bout with a totally different mentality than Froch does. Ward does not lose rounds.

When we see stats that jump off a page like these do, this handicapper can make an easy call for this bout. These numbers don’t lie. This is not a collection of lies, damn lies and statistics.  This is a stunning difference in how these two fighters seem to mentally approach the totality of a bout. Based on Froch being programmed to lose a ton of rounds and Ward programmed to win nearly every round, Froch is programmed to lose. Ward wins by a comfortable UD.

Should I be wrong, I will not look for sympathy based on any proviso that “styles make fights”. And, “NO”, a different “style” of mentally approaching a bout is not the same thing as “styles make fights”; it is a path to having brass ones in predicting this bout. And my prediction comes from a set of brass ones! No excuses! This is an EASY BOUT TO HANDICAP! Ward by COMFORTABLE UD of the 117-111 kind of comfortable!

Now let’s see if any fans have the brass ones to refute my handicapping!

Follow us on Twitter@boxing_com to continue the discussion

Recap: Carl Froch vs. Mikkel Kessler - Super Six World Boxing Classic

Super Six Nov 27th Recap: Carl Froch vs. Arthur Abraham & Andre Ward vs. Sakio Bika - SHOWTIME

Carl Froch vs Arthur Abraham Part1 (Pre Fight Buil Up) HD

Carl Froch vs Arthur Abraham Part2 HD

Carl Froch vs Arthur Abraham Part3 HD

Carl Froch vs Arthur Abraham Part4 HD

Carl Froch vs Arthur Abraham Part5 HD

Carl Froch vs Arthur Abraham Part6 (interviews) HD

Andre Ward vs. Allan Green: Recap - Super Six Boxing - SHOWTIME Sports

Super Six Nov 27th Recap: Carl Froch vs. Arthur Abraham & Andre Ward vs. Sakio Bika - SHOWTIME

Andre Ward Vs Arthur Abraham - Part 1 of 4

Andre Ward Vs Arthur Abraham - Part 2 of 4

Andre Ward Vs Arthur Abraham - Part 3 of 4

Andre Ward Vs Arthur Abraham - Part 4 of 4

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  1. "Old Yank" Schneider 05:41am, 08/28/2011

    The Thresher—That about sums it up.  But I do worry for Froch because of how many rounds he loses.  Although his battle plan to “win a war” (rather than win every battle) does show some serious flaws.  Many thought he lost to Dirrell.  Had Taylor been any one else but Taylor and survived the 12th, Froch would have lost that one too.  IMO, Froch looks like a man with a recent winning record with a losing plan.  These “by the skin of his teeth” wins are a very tough way to try to hold onto a winning record.  Just imagine if Dirrell got the nod or Taylor hung on, what then would we be saying about Carl Froch?

  2. The Thresher 11:17am, 08/27/2011

    This is not so much about Froch programmed to lose as it is Ward programmed to win. Froch wins fights in ways unlike Ward. Froch pulls them out while Ward looks at each round as a fight (or battle) in and of itself. You win enough battles, you win the war. Froch looks at winning wars. Both have been successful with their plan.

  3. "Old Yank" Schneider 10:07am, 08/26/2011

    raxman—Based on information given to me by an AIBA official: “A win via Walk Over due to medical or administrative elimination of an opponent is considered an uncontested win.”  Therfore (based on CURRENT RULES), Munos won the gold in 2004 without facing a contestant.  The medically eliminated fighter is not counted as even being in a contest—no loss is given to him.  I still do not have a response from the AIBA on exactly what the Torunament Record shows for the Gold Medal bout with regard to Ward.

  4. "Old Yank" Schneider 08:21am, 08/26/2011

    raxman—Both Ward and Munos had already EARNED the Silver (at minimum) and the only open question was if he or Munos would win the Gold.  A medical “jury” exists in Olympic trials where medical evidence is reviewed bout as presented by a contestant and as presented for the protection of a contestant.  I do not know if Ward presented evidence of an injury that would not allow him to continue that was deemed appropriate by teh jury or if Munos was awarded a BYE or a Walk-Over.  In any case, Ward did not compete against Munos and I am still waiting for the Tournament official record to see if it records Ward as losing the gold-medal bout or not.  Again, since Ward boasts not losing a bout in 15 years, it is clear that Team Ward does not recognize it as a loss.

  5. raxman 02:58pm, 08/25/2011

    Old Yank - yeah i’m all over that AIBA site but it doesn’t really cover the minutia of tournament ettiquette - the bottom line is ward choose not to fight because he hurt his thumb in the semi final and there was nothing gained by him fighting in the final as he had already qualified. as far as i can tell and from anecdotal evidence from officials i spoke to here (australia) for ward to be awarded the silver he must have turned up and pulled out in the ring ie prior to the bouts start making an official withdrawl - its the only way it makes sense that he would be given the medal. were it a straight no show without the injury it reads to me and from what all our memories are of the 04 rules (which i must stay like most sporting organisation are convoluted and seemingly contradictory) he would not have been awarded the medal and it would’ve been passed down. anyway looking back at these comments i wonder how i got so caught up in championing something i was only curious about. i do think given the publicity Ward has had in recent years its amazing this statiscal anomaly hadnt previously surfaced - more intersting though is how much talent came out of that tourney - Dirrell, Berto, Martirosyan, angulo, juan-ma, pascal and maidana

  6. "Old Yank" Schneider 04:07am, 08/25/2011

    Here is a link to the rulebook:

  7. "Old Yank" Schneider 04:05am, 08/25/2011

    By the way, being disqualified TO fight in a tournament is quite different then being disqualified IN a bout via a DQ.  Any fan can appreciate the difference: in one case a fighter is DQ’ed by “QUALIFYING rules” BEFORE a bout, and in the other case he’s DQ’ed by BREAKING the rules of sportsmanship while IN a bout.  In one case a contestant loses to a rule book and in the other he loses to a fighter.

  8. "Old Yank" Schneider 03:51am, 08/25/2011

    raxman—I have emailed the AIBA and made an inquiry about what the official record reflects as Ward’s disposition in the finals of the 2004 tournament.  We will soon have the official answer.

  9. "Old Yank" Schneider 03:09am, 08/25/2011

    raxman—Thank you for your hard work and research.

  10. raxman 06:34pm, 08/24/2011

    Old Yank -  the fact of the matter is i started this by asking a question if anyone knew why ward only silvered at an event if he has an unbeaten record and you replied - “I don’t have a clue what silver medal you are talking about.  Ward did not lose a single qualifying event for the Olympics in 2004.  He’s on a 15-year winning streak.  Your information is incorrect”. i didnt, at that point have any information just a medal result. following your graceless and typicallly venomous response i researched and gave my own answer to which i also stated that yes he is unbeaten in the ring but thats not the same as not losing and thats not splitting hairs- he didnt get the gold but he was given the silver - what does that tell you? at the very least it enlightens you to what silver medal i was talking about! anyway for mine its still a loss because part of the abilty to win these amateur tournaments is having the endurance and the durability to fight sometimes as many as five times over a week. you want to talk byes and walk overs well thats all just a way softening what is recorded as a dq loss (call it a walk over loss if that makes you feel better) and although i may not be able to find an official recording of this particular tourney i will have a look and i will post a link to IABA rules when i get a chance that will outline the variety of ways dq’s are given - the amateur system has changed dramatically this year - more than just the scoring so i will endeavour to find something that relates to 04 just so as not create another teacup storm - by the way do you follow the amateurs? have you heard this ridiculous talk of making pro boxers olympic eligible for rio 2016? if that happens its basically the end of amateur boxing as we know it.

  11. "Old Yank" Schneider 05:49pm, 08/24/2011

    Based on my review of the AIBA rule book, I now believe that Munos was awarded the win via “Walk Over” (Ward failing to enter the ring when addressed to do so over the public address system and failing to enter the ring within 1 minute after the sounding of the bell).  I am unable to find ANY record of Ward losing via DQ.  I can find a rule awarding Munos a win via Walk Over.  If you have a link to any official record, I’d be happy to review it.

  12. "Old Yank" Schneider 05:24pm, 08/24/2011

    And if Ward died in a car crash driving to the tournament he would have lost by a DQ due to death!  Same as not making weight…same as a medical withdraw—yup that’s LOSING!  Munos won via a BYE!

  13. "Old Yank" Schneider 05:21pm, 08/24/2011

    raxman—So you want to split hairs?  Ward has not lost a bout IN THE RING in 15 years.  Play technical games if you like.  The reality is that NO MAN has won a bout from Ward in 15 years and he has not lost IN THE RING in 15 years.  My information says Munos won via BYE—it does not say Ward LOST via DQ.  Does it make you feel good to see this as some sort of technical victory?  Take it—it’s yours.  Your point was that Ward was to be made SMALLER by you claiming that he lost—as in lost IN THE RING.  It just never happened that way.  Ward’s personal web site lays a claim to him not losing in 15 years and my bet is that they see it the same way I do.  PEACE

  14. raxman 04:35pm, 08/24/2011

    old yank - our comments are crossing - but no, the event is record as a DQ loss to ward on medical grounds - it would be the same if couldnt make weight on the last day of the tourney or if same his book disappeared or any of the other technical BS that surround amateur boxing

  15. raxman 04:33pm, 08/24/2011

    old yank - mate?? come on!! you said, and i quote .  “Ward did not lose a single qualifying event for the Olympics in 2004.  He’s on a 15-year winning streak.  Your information is incorrect.” your own words Yank! you didnt say anything about him being dq’d and i’m sorry but medical or not he lost that fight - not entering the ring for round 1 is the same as any other dq - so you can dress it any way you want mate but a loss is a loss and this IS you getting nailed so be a sport and wear this defeat with honour - alright?

  16. "Old Yank" Schneider 04:29pm, 08/24/2011

    Raxman—Edgar Munos won the Gold at the 2004 qualifying tournament via a BYE due to Ward’s withdrawing due to an injury.  The amateur books do not record it as a loss for Ward to the best of my knowledge.  However, on this I am open to being wrong.

  17. "Old Yank" Schneider 04:23pm, 08/24/2011

    Chip—Go big or go home!  That’s my style.  I’m not afraid of being wrong; I’m afraid of not having the balls to tell it like I see it!

  18. "Old Yank" Schneider 04:21pm, 08/24/2011

    raxman—I was aware that Ward won the silver at 1st AIBA Qualifying Tournament in 2004 and had to withdraw from the final due to an injury.  Don’t it just get your goat when you can’t nail the Old Yank for being wrong when he’s right?

  19. raxman 04:40am, 08/24/2011

    old yank - alright! ward lost the final of the 1st AIBA 2004 Olympic Trials by medical DQ as a result of a hairline fracture to his thumb he withdrew from the fight, the result of which had no impact on his olympic qualification - but just because he had an injury and pulled out for that reason doesn’t mean he can considered undefeated for 15 years- if his run of wins mattered so much he should of fought. now you see all this information i gave you? all i was doing was asking one of my boxing fan elders a question that required the above as an answer - you didnt need to shoot my shit down in such a dismissive way. consider yourself now schooled old man!

  20. raxman 04:27am, 08/24/2011

    old yank - on further googling i have discovered that he lost that final due to a medical dq - what is a medical dq you ask? i’ve yet to find out but although he hasn’t lost in the ring he has lost a fight in that time - so you know mate it’s not my information that is wrong - that’s because i don’t believe the hype - i check shit out. but what i also found is the main claim made by ward and his people is that ward didn’t lose between 98 &04; - both the trials and the olympics were in 04 so its easy to think it is inclusive - anyway DQ’s whether medical or not - count as a loss.

  21. Chip 04:01am, 08/24/2011

    Rather preachy article. I am a Ward fan but one silver cloud to him losing would have you looking a dick. Not likely to happen though.

    And although your main premise is solid (Ward is more effective at winning rounds over the course of a fight), you didn’t point out the gulf in quality between the opponents Ward and Froch have faced.

    Still, Ward on points all day.

  22. raxman 03:48am, 08/24/2011

    old yank check out
    correct me if i’m wrong but doesnt that read as a silver medal under the light heavy catergory - now maybe medals were awarded on a point basis and you didnt have to win a final to get gold or lose to get silver - but that would be unusual. but hey - i know how much you hate being wrong - even less admitting when youre wrong so maybe the wiki page is wrong - wouldnt be the first time. but if its not wrong don’t feel bad about being sucked in most of us were - because no one actually bothers to check fighters amateur stats out. and more importantly is that whether its a lie or not ward is still an amazing fighter - oh and by the way did you see where misread Tex’s comment?

  23. "Old Yank" Schneider 02:43am, 08/24/2011

    raxman—I don’t have a clue what silver medal you are talking about.  Ward did not lose a single qualifying event for the Olympics in 2004.  He’s on a 15-year winning streak.  Your information is incorrect.

  24. raxman 09:12pm, 08/23/2011

    have you guys all heard it said that ward has not lost since he was 15? i also read in one article he hasn’t lost since he was 13. then i looked at his amateur career and found that he has a silver medal at the 1st aiba american 2004 olympic qualifying event - silver - as in second - as in lost a fight prior to winning gold that same year in athens

  25. raxman 09:06pm, 08/23/2011

    OLD YANK - i feel, having obsessively read thru all the comments, i need to defend Tex - who obviously posted and left. you mis read his post - he said ward had too much movement for froch; not as you read, and responded to it. interesting read all in all though i feel you over state something that is obvious - your point could have been made in the single paragraph that sums up ward chipping away at 10-9 rounds and froch looking to inflict pain.

  26. "Old Yank" Schneider 09:05am, 08/23/2011

    MickeyRight—Aside from Froch’s final seconds KO of the china-chinned Taylor, when was his last KO win?  Against who?  You need to go back 3 years to find Froch’s last KO win (aside from Taylor).  There is little chance Froch will KO the faster Ward.  And Ward will be suprised when Ward sits down on a few punches in order to get respect. Ward only sits down on a punch when he needs to temporarily get enough respect to allow him to return to his game plan.  If Froch walks in disrespecting Ward’s power, he will get beat up.

  27. MikeyRight 12:55am, 08/22/2011

    Froch tends to only go the distance with big punchers, ie, takes less of a risk. With Ward Froch will be swinging for the fences as he does not fear his power. Ward thinks he can rough it like with Bika but Froch is a lot smarter than Bika and can adapt. My Money is on the real warrior fighting spirit for this one. Froch late TKO unless Ward shows a tremendous chin.

  28. MIchael 08:08pm, 08/20/2011

    Ward only does well with the 3rd man helping him out, round after round.

    If the American Boxing Association and Showtime will just grant Froch a fair Ref, I’ll settle for a Joe Cortez in a Ricky Hatton/Mayweather deal. Soon as Ward presses Carl against the ropes(Hatton) Joe Cortez jumps in and puts about 5 feet, with force, between them. Carl should love that.

  29. MIchael 08:03pm, 08/20/2011

    In all honest opinion, after seeing the ref’ing in last week’s fight I have lost all confidence in a fair fight on Showtime boxing. Carl Froch has done all the hard work in the SS and Ward has ridden the gravy train all the way through. SOG? Jesus Christ…come on Ward. Jesus wore sandals and he did some traveling around. You haven’t been anywhere.But yeah, Froch is not going to get a fair Ref, Ward will do his Head Butting shite and the Judges will be bent as a hairpin which leaves Carl in a KO win option only…should not be the case in this SS tourny..he’s done the legwork, give him a fair shot.

  30. "Old Yank" Schneider 11:02am, 08/16/2011

    Good one!  He, he, he…  you might be right…Indeed I doth protest.  Too much?  I’ll think about that.  This is what happens when you think you treed a squirrel when if fact you cornered a badger:  A few wild and wide pokes to the face will initially provoke a badger’s instinct to defend.  But never count on the badger to remain defensive – it can cost you a finger or two and several stitches and preventive rabies shots if you persist – none of it very pleasant.  OK, I thought about it.  Let’s call my protest an instinctive response to defend myself.

  31. The Thresher 10:18am, 08/16/2011

    Methinks he doth protest too much!

  32. "Old Yank" Schneider 10:12am, 08/16/2011

    The Thresher—What’s your game now?  You may do all you wish to discredit my keen eye.  But you will fail!  You’ve known for 5 years or more that my “sport” is picking live dogs.  I quietly predict the obvious favorites (which I get right more than most—as any fan can) and LOUDLY predict live dogs.  You focus a huge (INORDINATE) amount of energy drawing attention to how many dog picks I get wrong.  Dogs, by definition, are betting UNDERDOGS.  They are SUPPOSED to lose more than win – and indeed more of them do lose than win—MOST of them lose.  So in the sport of “dog hunting”, having a record that can stand up to your COMFORTABLE picks of favorites is not possible.  I look to get a little more then ONE in THREE dog picks correct—and I.  That means that I ACCEPT getting it WRONG 60% of the time when picking a dog to win.  The math of dog hunting is BOLD when reduced to paper.  In a 10-bout wagering stream you lose $1.00 for 6 bouts and win $3 for 4 bouts—how does the math work?  It works like this: you are down $6 (losing $1 for each of the 6 bouts you get wrong), and WINNING $12 ($3 each for the 4 bouts you got right – assumes a 3:1 dog).  When one has a sport of hunting dogs (where 3 or 4 out of 10 good picks can bring HUGE rewards), one will taint a pure W/L ratio.  You need to get virtually 10 out of 10 “favorites” picks correct to match my winnings in picking 4 out of 10 dogs correctly.  Why?  Your $1 wager on a favorite is bringing you much LESS than $1 in winnings (on average) because you picked the favorite—the odds dictate this.  Few handicappers spend as much time as I do focusing on dogs.  You KNOW you are grasping at straws discrediting my predictions.  And you play other fans for being so STUPID that they don’t understand the difference between hunting with favorites and hunting with dogs.  No sir, the shame is on you for playing fans as idiots!  Fans that follow my dog picks do quite well for themselves.  And your goal it to do what?  Turn them off to a great handicapper of dogs?  SHAME ON YOU!

  33. The Thresher 09:43am, 08/16/2011

    Going with Ward in this fight hardly warrants a post. BUT, Old Yank’s record on picking fights is already deeply embedded in the Cyber Post Hall of Shame. Being right on this fight will do nothing to change that.

  34. "Old Yank" Schneider 09:23am, 08/16/2011

    del-g—By the time Froch and Ward climb in a ring in Atlantic City, aside from the suspect stamina/suspect chin of Taylor, Froch has not scored a KO in 3 1/2 years!  And that was against a virtual no-body, Albert Rybecki (May of 2008).  Without question Froch is MUCH better today than in 2008 and the experience he’s gained since then is substantial.  But Froch is not likely going to KO the best defensive fighter at 168!  Can you name a fighter near the top of the 168 pound pile that has better defense than Ward?  Please take some candy from a baby and offer a wager to your friend who is predicting a Froch KO!  This bout is EASY to predict – Ward by decisive UD!

  35. del g 08:13am, 08/16/2011

    Good, lively debate fellas. I was talking to a couple of buds on this very debate today. One of ‘em reckons Froch will hurt Ward early and stop him late. I say Ward UD. But my bud reckons CF’s only way to win will be by KO. Not impossible by any means, improbable, but not impossible.

  36. "Old Yank" Schneider 07:51am, 08/16/2011

    The Thresher—ANOTHER point YOU MISSED: I said, “Relying too heavily on statistics runs the risk of losing sight of virtually everything that cannot be reduced to numbers. Stats have their limitations.”  But the OBVIOUS point I make is that sometimes stats JUMP OFF A PAGE due to how BOLD a contrast they can paint.  Where is the bold contrast between Pacquiao and Marquez in rounds won and lost against each other?  Did one lose HALF the rounds he fought while the other barely lost a round as is the case with Froch and Ward?  My words are intended to be taken together—not parsed one word at a time as you seem to find great sport in.  And, by-the-way—I LIKE IT!  Your comments get my juices flowing and hopefully others get as big kick out of our exchanges as I do.  PEACE!

  37. "Old Yank" Schneider 07:41am, 08/16/2011

    The Thresher—What legit statistician finds statistical significance in one, two or three bouts?  Please name him for me!  The “sample size” is far too small.  Thank you for your cooperation!  By my “logic” (for which you’ve missed the point), and by using your off-point interpretation, Manny wins against Marquez because a statistically significant sampling of their most recent rounds (60 rounds having more statistical significance than 36 rounds) would see Pacquiao as the fighter programmed to win against Marquez.  In addition, there is nothing GLARING about the difference in rounds won between Pacquiao and Marquez – there is something GLARING in the difference between the number of rounds won between Ward and Froch.  You spend an INORDINATE amount of time finding some minutia to discredit any points I make.  It’s your MO.  I live with it.  For crap’s sake, find something with meat on it if you are going to come at me!  …But we all know that there are a TON of factors for why Pacquiao beats Marquez that have no GLARING rounds won/lost statistical differences about them—one being ANOTHER catch-weight embarrassment of a set up for this bout.  Hell, if Ariza needs to fight night and day with Pacquiao to get him up to a weight where he can fight at 147, why is the Marquez/Pacquiao bout at a catch-weight above 140?  WHY???

  38. The Thresher 07:21am, 08/16/2011

    YOUR BIGGEST PROBLEM ASIDE FROM ASS BURGERS DISEASE IS THAT YOU PREMORT. JMM won more rounds than Manny against Manny, get it?

  39. "Old Yank" Schneider 07:17am, 08/16/2011

    The Thresher—And WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT??!!!  Pacquiao has lost ONE round in his last 60 (based on the best card from each bout)!  Marquez has lost 18 over his last 60 (based on the best card from each bout)—so “by [my] logic, Pacquiao is programmed to win”.  You got it EXACTLY azz backwards my friend!  Damn, Ward has only lost 1 in 20 (best case) rounds he’s fought over his last 60 rounds.  That is an intense indication of being programmed to win by winning only one round—the one he’s fighting.

  40. "Old Yank" Schneider 06:57am, 08/16/2011

    The Thresher—My logic is NOT 100% staistically based—and that is what you missed.  Ward and Froch MENTALLY approach HOW to win a bout differently.  The INDICATION of this is in the statistics regarding number of rounds won and number lost.  Mayweather (after hand issues at 135) became more of a “programmed” boxer—mentally approaching a bout with the intent of winning ONE round—the one he was fighting.  Calzaghe was a one round at a time fighter.  And so too is Ward.  Because each of these fighters were somewhat “gaming” the 10-point system, they were “programmed to win”.  Their opposition, due to MENTALLY approaching a bout with a vastly different focus (seeing a bout as one to OVER 12 rounds rather than one round at at a time), end up PROGRAMMED to lose when up against a fighter PROGRAMMED to win.  To be sure, there are enough bugs in a program that not all of them execute as programmed, but the point is not purely a logic about rounds won vs. rounds lost.  The number of rounds won and lost is an INDICATOR of the mental PROGRAM a fighter brings into a bout.  There is little evidence that Juan Manuel Marquez fights a bout “gaming” the 10-point system, and therefore your view that by my “logic” he shoud win, is flawed.  Why?  Because you missed the point!

  41. The Thresher 06:03am, 08/16/2011

    Of course, using this same logic, Manny should lose against JMM because Marquez won far more rounds. But that is not going to happen.

  42. "Old Yank" Schneider 01:01pm, 08/15/2011

    St. Thomas—Appreciate the props.  And how does a Cali fan do anything honorable but come down on Ward’s side?

  43. "Old Yank" Schneider 12:58pm, 08/15/2011

    del-g—Thanx brother.  Nice to see some serious fans come out on Froch’s side here.  Hell, I think you are all wet, but that what makes for a great fight night with a cold beer and smart fans.  Ain’t no such thing as a bad boxing discussion!  PEACE

  44. sthomas 12:05pm, 08/15/2011

    Well done Old Yank.  I remember you mentioning this before and I see the fight playing out this way, unless Froch can land consistantly, then all bets are off.

  45. del g 11:35am, 08/15/2011

    Excellent read Old Yank. I honestly couldnt split these 2 fighters since the Final was decided. Both have great qualities, but I would tend to give the edge to Ward if pushed to make a prediction, a Ward UD sounds about right. His speed will probably earn him the W. Froch will be dangerous till the final bell. But Ward is a very smart fighter, and 117-111? I will go with a similar decision. And whoever wins will go on to beat Bute imo. Nice work.

  46. "Old Yank" Schneider 10:38am, 08/15/2011

    If Froch pulls off a decision against Ward it will be because he beats him up with relentless pressure.  Ward will score a lot of jabs—there is little doubt in my mind about it.  But this could come down to volume of punches vs. effectiveness of punches—Ward with the volume and Froch with the more effective shots.

  47. "Old Yank" Schneider 10:35am, 08/15/2011

    The Thresher—Good catch!  Thanx!  Was it a MD and not a SD?  Ok then, one judge saw Johnson even on the cards.  The point is that I’m not convinced that Froch shows too much movement for ANYONE in the top-10 at 168!  Is not losing 30 of his prior 60 rounds a testament to Froch not being hard to find?  Who has his movement been an issue for in the past?  Indeed Froch might very well pull off a decision over Ward—but I seriously doubt that it will be because Froch’s movement is a problem for Ward.

  48. The Thresher 10:16am, 08/15/2011

    And just what judge gave Johnson the fight????

  49. "Old Yank" Schneider 10:12am, 08/15/2011

    Tex—Anything is possible in boxing.  But Froch did not have too much movement for Taylor—Taylor was ahead on the cards until the final seconds KO snatched defeat from the jaws of victory.  Johnson was able to hit Froch enough to see one of three judges give him the bout—not too much movement for Johnson either.  Kessler found a way to hit Froch enough to win a UD and certainly Froch did not pose a serious moving target for Kessler.  What do you see in Ward that makes Froch’s movement too much for him?  PEACE!

  50. The Thresher 09:39am, 08/15/2011

    Ward lacks Froch’s charisma so if he wins, what really does he win? The Super Six is a great accomplishment, but Ward better start hitting the road and fight in NYC, AC, Vegas, Southern Cali, Germany, UK, etc. He needs more exposure. Oakland is the not a place where many boxing legends are born. A few, but not very many.

  51. Tex Hassler 09:30am, 08/15/2011

    I think Ward will win by a decision. He just has too much movement for Froch and should prevail. Interesting article.

  52. "Old Yank" Schneider 07:19am, 08/15/2011

    Ward/Froch could turn out very ugly.  SEE:  Kessler/Ward for one ugly fight!  [the billy-goat rumble]  SEE: Green/Ward for an ugly disregard for power when confidence in speed rules.  SEE:  Ward/Bika for a typical ugly Bika fight.  I am genuinely excited for this bout.  Ward will be doing everything in his power to make it look like a boring chess game (a game I doubt he can lose against Froch), and Froch will be looking to ruffel Ward’s feathers and make him very uncomfortable with the pressure.  I expect Ward to be Hopkins-like in his use of “tools”—replacing a Philly toolbox with an Oakland trickbag.

  53. The Thresher 06:30am, 08/15/2011

    Ward fights ugly.

  54. "Old Yank" Schneider 06:29am, 08/15/2011

    Oh, and the probability of Ward gassing out inside 12 a la Taylor is virtually ZERO!  If I have a knock on Ward it is his conservative nature to leave some gas in the tank rather than leaving it all in the ring.  His fan-appeal would skyrocket if he ever gave a leave-it-all-in-the-ring performance at this level.  He definitely runs the risk of boring fans to death like Winky Wright could do—great skills, low appeal.

  55. "Old Yank" Schneider 06:25am, 08/15/2011

    The Thresher—Thanx!  No doubt about it—Froch has grit.  He is a mix of old-school Euro and new-school America.  He has a Tony Margarito-like quality in a come-forward stalking style that is backed by utter confidence that he will win because he just won’t quit.  But the biggest surprise Froch will encounter is Ward having Dirrell-like speed without Dirrell-like “head” issues (mental, not butt).  Although I stated this will be 117-111 on the cards, I honestly feel that Ward might do even better.  After all, a 117-111 card for Ward ranks among the WORST cards turned in for him over his last 60 rounds.

  56. The Thresher 06:11am, 08/15/2011

    Very good analysis. Hard to argue with stats. But one thing that can’t be quantiied is Froch’s grit. He will leave nothing in the ring and will go after Ward for 180 minutes of each round. He will stalk Ward, not the other way around. Also, Ward lacks one-punch KO power and Froch has a great chin, so even if Ward wins every round going into the last round, he still could be waxed ala Taylor.

    However, I DO believe Ward will win. I just hope not, as I like Froch’s style more.

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