Kelly Pavlik Should Be Last Fight at Super Middleweight for Andre Ward

Mick Akers@@mickakersAnalyst ISeptember 25, 2012

OAKLAND, CA - SEPTEMBER 08:  Andre Ward celebrates after beating Chad Dawson by a TKO in the 10th round in their WBA/WBC Super Middleweight championship fight at ORACLE Arena on September 8, 2012 in Oakland, California.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Super middleweight champion Andre Ward distinguished himself as one of the top pound-for-pound fighters in the world with his dominant victory over Chad Dawson earlier this month. Ward may now face former middleweight title holder Kelly Pavlik next, according to

Ward (26-0, 14 KOs) put on the performance of his career against Dawson, and taking on Pavlik next would all but leave Ward with no real competition in the super middleweight division with a win.

Pavlik (40-2, 34 KOs) is in the midst of a comeback after his career was nearly derailed after the Ohio-born fighter had troubles with alcohol abuse (per

Since returning to the ring after a year-long hiatus this past March, Pavlik is 3-0 against increasingly better competition, winning the first two bouts by TKO and his last fight against Will Rosinsky by unanimous decision.

Although Pavlik will offer Ward one his toughest assignments in the ring to date, if Ward fights like he did against Dawson, he should emerge victorious and could set his sights on the 175-pound light heavyweight division.

Ward told, "And of course the 175 pound division which I'm excited about. I don't know if it's going to be my next fight but I'm just excited about that next challenge and I think my body will be happy about having that extra weight on me as well. I think I'm going to be a lot stronger."

Making the jump to the light heavyweight division would obviously set up a possible rematch between Ward and Dawson (31-2, 17 KOs). Dawson is the top light heavyweight in the world and currently has the WBC and The Ring titles to his name.

Many feel that Dawson's performance was altered by shedding the extra pounds to make the 168-pound super middleweight limit, and meeting up with Dawson at his normal weight could yield a very different outcome if a rematch ever happens.