Andre Ward's Historical Run: Who Could Stop His 16-Year Winning Streak?
Andre "Son of God" Ward gets the job done when he jumps in the ring. This past Saturday, he once again demonstrated that he is one of the best boxers in the world.
Ward's accomplishments of the past 10 years are quite impressive. He has been the first to stop Chad Dawson, and he did it pretty easily.
Eight years ago, Ward won the gold medal at the 2004 Olympic Games and followed with a stellar professional career. He currently is the unified WBC and WBA super middleweight champion. He has also been named the fighter of the year for 2011 by The Ring Magazine.
Ward won the famous “Super Six” tournament and has five successful title defenses. Even though he is still pretty young at 28 years old, Ward had stiff competition so far. His past six opponents combine for a record of 201 wins in 219 fights (win percentage of 92 percent).
Mikkel Kessler, Allan Green, Sakio Bika, Arthur Abraham, Carl Froch and Chad Dawson have all been outclassed by Ward, even though four of them were current or former champions from a major boxing association.
Is Andre Ward the best super middleweight of all time? We can’t make this assertion at this point of his career, but he is definitely on the right track. Can you believe that he had a 114-5 amateur record and hasn't lost a fight since he was 12 years old?
The only current problem for Ward right now is the lack of opposition left in his division. Lucian Bute could be a future opponent, but the former Canadian champion will want to get his revenge on Froch first.
And let’s be honest, if Bute reclaims the IBF title, will he really want to put it in jeopardy against a fighter who has been unbeatable for the past 16 years? His managing group will be conscious of this situation and will stay away from this possible dream fight. A clash between the left-hander and Ward is more than unlikely in the short term.
Who has the best shot at defeating Ward?
Joe Calzaghe could come out of retirement to face him, but it is once again very unlikely.
There is an intriguing contender in Adonis Stevenson from Montreal, Quebec. The past eight wins of the 34-year-old came by way of knockout. His impressive power could bring some hype in a match vs. Ward. Other than a small error in 2010, Stevenson’s path is pretty neat with 18 wins (15 KOs) in 19 fights.
There is a reason why most boxers are currently trying to avoid Adonis "Superman" Stevenson: He hits harder than anyone else in the division. His past two wins against Jesus Gonzales (27-2) and Noe Gonzales Alcoba (28-2) were spectacular with two early knockouts.
The only major issue for the southpaw is his inexperience. He is six years older than Ward, but only has 61 professional rounds of boxing. Could it be a problem in the ring vs. Ward? While Ward would use his speed and talent to control the fight, the Superman could be dangerous in any round with a devastating punch.
The most interesting opponent could be fellow 2004 Olympic teammate Andre Dirrell. While he is fast and talented, his lack of action in the past two years could be a huge problem.
In summary, there aren’t many boxers who could be a problem for the unified champion. Ward could move down in the weight category to face Sergio Martinez, who seems to like the idea, but it remains to be seen.
Ward could easily remain undefeated for the next several years to come. A boxing legend is in the making.
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