Ward/Froch Prediction: When Razorbacks Fly
Froch has stumbled, lost, and struggled to make it to the tournament finals and Ward has breezed his way through barely losing a round…
When pigs fly is a storyline that is as old as the boxing truism speed kills! And when all the trash talking is over, the truism “speed kills” is why Carl Froch beats Andre Ward when pigs fly.
Carl Froch, a razorback kind of pig who can rip-you-apart with power and a relentless attacking will, is the prohibitive underdog in this bout. We have two champions entering the ring in a partial unification of the super middleweight title and yet one of them is a serious underdog. This writer suspects the odds-makers have got it right this time (as they so often do).
Carl Froch will meet Andre Ward at Boardwalk Hall in the great fight town of Atlantic City tonight and will to have his chance to try to prove that pigs can in fact fly and speed does not kill. He will have his chance to show why so many see him as a very live dog. And it is perfectly fair to ask why anyone could be so harsh in predicting the outcome of this bout with words like “when pigs fly.” And it is perfectly fair to counter the question by asking why so much hype exists over Carl Froch. What exactly will he bring into the ring Saturday night that will allow pigs to fly and allow him to neutralize the truism “speed kills”? What exactly has he done?
Much is made of the tough-as-nails, baptism-by-fire path that Carl Froch took to make it to the finals of the Super Six World Boxing Classic. To be sure the list of opponents he faced is likely the toughest road anyone in the tournament traveled. But, did Froch breeze his way down that path or did he stumble and stumble badly along the way?
Froch entered the first round of the tournament pitted against Jermain Taylor. In spite of the fact that Froch was already holding the WBC title, he entered the bout as the underdog. After being knocked down in the fourth and badly behind on points late in the bout, why he was the underdog in this bout seemed clear and justified. But Taylor proved what many already suspected (and what would, in retrospect, be proven again and again)—he’s a gifted athlete, not a gifted fighter, and his gas tank is just not large enough to take him the distance of 12 hard rounds against quality competition. Again one can argue unnecessary harshness in this assessment and rule that it is patently unfair to Froch and cruelly diminishes his achievement. But the fact remains that Froch was behind on the scorecards at the time of his win by stoppage in the final seconds of the bout. The fact remains that Froch lost more rounds than he won against the highly suspect Taylor. The fact remains that this was no smooth path for Carl Froch—he struggled and stumbled his way to his first round tournament win.
In round number two of the Super Six World Boxing Classic Froch met the seriously inexperienced Andre Dirrell (18-0, with 13 wins via KO coming in). Dirrell was slick and fast, but had a whopping 78 rounds of pro experience when he stepped in the ring against Froch. In a split decision that many feel was about as strong an example of hometown cooking as we’ll ever get to see, Carl Froch stumbled and wrestled his way to a win. Again one can argue that it is unfair to diminish Froch’s win against Dirrell, but the fact remains that this was far from a cakewalk for Froch. The fact remains that Froch essentially lost as many rounds as he won and arguably lost more than he won. The fact remains that Carl Froch had stumbled his way through the second round of the tournament.
Mikkel Kessler was the opponent for Carl Froch in his next tournament bout. To be sure this was a fan-friendly, rock ‘em-sock ‘em bout. And Carl Froch lost. He lost! Many argue that Kessler’s win was a hometown decision. But the fact remains that Froch lost more rounds than he won on the official scorecards. The fact remains that Froch did worse than stumble his way through this third round tournament bout—he lost!
Froch’s next bout was against the hard-hitting Arthur Abraham—the smallest man in the tournament by far. Many say, and I agree, that Carl Froch exposed Abraham as being too small and one-dimensional to be fighting with the big boys at 168. This was a great win for Froch and it showed that there might be more to Froch’s boxing skills than initially met the eye. Froch was dominant and for the first time in what seemed an eternity, Froch did not lose as many rounds as he won. Abraham was later eliminated from the tournament by Andre Ward after he’d already lost to Dirrell and Froch earlier in the Super Six. The fact remains that Abraham was exposed as being not up to the level of the others in the tournament. There is no question that Froch breezed his way through Abraham; but this was to be the only bout in the entire tournament where Froch would have no excuses, a clear-cut win without any stumbles.
Froch’s last bout was against the always ready Glen Johnson—the now always ready, 42-year-old Glen Johnson; the always ready 42 year-old light heavyweight fighting at 168, Glen Johnson (read: old and somewhat dried out Johnson). There are not enough fine words I can write about Glen Johnson, but enough already, he’s done. What we can say about Carl Froch in his fine boxing effort against the 42- year-old, past-it Johnson is that the best he could pull out of this bout was a majority decision. The fact remains that Froch lost a lot of rounds against the 42-year-old, rugged but far from speedy Johnson. The fact remains that Froch stumbled and struggled in his last bout leading up to the Super Six World Boxing Classic Finals.
To keep this short and simple, by contrast the speedster, slickster and mover Andre Ward has barely lost a round in the entire tournament.
A truism in boxing as true as “speed kills” is “anything can happen.” But, c’mon folks, Carl Froch has stumbled, lost, and struggled to make it to the tournament finals and Ward has breezed his way through barely losing a round.
Disallowing the truism that “anything can happen,” this is as easy a fight to predict as any we will ever get to see. When pigs fly Froch will beat Ward and I’ve not seen any pigs with wings hanging around Boardwalk Hall so far this Saturday, day of the bout, morning.
Speed kills and pigs don’t fly! Ward will win by either a wide and comfortable UD or via a late round TKO—I’m going out on a limb and predicting a late round TKO victory for Andre Ward.
Got a prediction? Let’s hear it!