The showdown between Carl Froch and George Groves has everything a boxing fan could possibly want. There is a backdrop of controversy, bitter rivals who genuinely seem to dislike each other and the potential for a thrilling back-and-forth affair.
The super middleweight rematch will take place Saturday at historic Wembley Stadium, which only adds to the buzz surrounding the clash.
In the first matchup, Froch stopped Groves in the ninth round in a controversial ending, but Groves has the chance for revenge he has likely been looking for since that difficult loss.
Let’s dig into a few of the key storylines for the rematch.
Overall Magnitude of the Event
The prize money alone is enough to suggest just how important this bout will be Saturday.
Groves is set to make £2m, which is nothing to sneeze at, but Froch is banking an incredible £8m for his world-title defense efforts.
There are expected to be 80,000 people watching live at Wembley Stadium and countless more watching via television. The fact that the match is in Wembley is a testament to just how important it is as the biggest fight in British history. The stadium drips in tradition and is one of the true cathedrals in all of sports on any continent.
It is the perfect backdrop for such an important event.
While the money at stake is one thing, both fighters would likely take significant less if they could have the bragging rights that come with a victory.
It has been a promotional path covered in bad blood to get to this bout, as both Froch and Groves have engaged in trash talk after a legal appeal to the International Boxing Federation forced the rematch after a controversial finish in the first match.
The IBF ultimately declared that Groves was stopped prematurely in the ninth round, which sets up the incredible stage for this rematch.
The Trash Talk
The most entertaining part of the buildup to this fight has been the trash talk, and Groves held nothing back recently, via Gareth A. Davis of The Telegraph:
Nothing needs to be forced with Carl, so there’s no need for me to try and force a reaction. His destiny is to lose and Saturday night is fast approaching. I would much rather leave him to digest all of that on his own.
We went head-to-head and never said a word and he will have to deal with his fate and his fate is going to come on Saturday night. Nothing needs to be said between us. It’s fight week and he’s in a fight he cannot win because my performance won’t allow him to be in the fight. That’s got to be a terrible feeling for Carl and it’s only going to get worse…
Today, I don’t need to antagonise Carl Froch. I want him to be at peace because it is dawning on him that his day of reckoning is fast approaching. He is going to have to face the inevitable. He is like a man on death row and I can’t imagine that would be very nice.
Even with the trash talk and the fact that there is so much on the line, Froch looked calm at the weigh-in, as Natalie Jackson of BBC East Midlands Today pointed out:
The argument can be made that Groves is the better boxer and was on his way to a points victory in the first match if he didn’t change his style in the ninth round and start scrapping and trading blows with Froch.
However, Froch has a better idea of what to expect this time around with that difficult first match under his belt, and, as the more experienced title defender, the magnitude of the moment won’t get to him.
The thought here is that Froch uses that experience edge to his advantage as he outmaneuvers Groves for a close victory.
Desmond Kane of EuroSport.com agreed, via Yahoo Sports:
Groves is also not Andre Ward. Can he dance around Froch all night? More pertinently, does he have the discipline to do so? I'm going for the more experienced figure to get the better of this fascinating contest. Why? Because the element of surprise has gone.
I suspect Froch will be better prepared for what Groves is going to offer this time. But it is very close to call in what has to be the best British fight since Chris Eubank and Nigel Benn went at it 21 years ago.
Regardless of who wins, boxing fans all over the world are promised a thrilling bout.
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