After a hard-fought and action-packed bout, Carl Froch defeated Mikkel Kessler by unanimous decision. Though some worried the hometown fighter (Froch) might get an unfair advantage on the scorecards, the official scores were justified and read 118-110, 116-112, 115-113 for Froch.
Scores were very similar to the first bout, but this time the judges favored Froch. Bleacher Report scored the bout 117-111—or nine rounds to three—for Froch. Compubox stats showed that Froch was the busier fighter, throwing and landing more punches.
Froch and Kessler both opened up the bout working behind their jabs. Froch seemed to win many of the early rounds, though Kessler put in good body work. The fight was close halfway through as both combatants continued to trade big shots and effectively wobbled each other.
The story of the night was Froch being able to take Kessler’s power punches better. Even though he may have been hurt a few times (as he alluded to in his post-fight interview with Max Kellerman) Froch didn’t overtly show it, which can always affect how spectators react.
Froch was able to weather the storm in Round 11 when it seemed like Kessler was coming on strong. Froch landed good combinations in the final round and comfortably closed the show. The crowd was justifiably pleased with the performance of both fighters.
Froch spoke to Kellerman after the fight and said he felt his work rate was key to his victory. A visibly bruised Froch also admitted that he was hit with too many punches. Looking forward, Froch left a possible third bout with Kessler open for discussion since both men now have one victory.
When asked about a possible rematch with Ward, Froch didn’t seem to jump at the opportunity to call out the true super middleweight champion. Froch said that while he respects Ward and his style, he feels that Ward is simply not an entertaining fighter.
Commentating for HBO, Ward admitted that after defeating Lucian Bute and Kessler in back-to-back fights, Froch is on a good streak and Ward vs. Froch II makes sense.
Kessler stated before the fight that if he lost, he would retire, so it remains to be seen if he keeps his word. With the loss Kessler, drops to 46-3, and with the win, Froch improves to 31-2, avenging one of his two career losses.
Should Carl Froch look to face Mikkel Kessler a third time or seek a rematch with Andre Ward?