WBA super middleweight world champion Andre Ward (24-0, 13 KOs) was scheduled to face WBC super middleweight world champion Carl Froch (28-1, 20 KOs) in the Super Six Boxing Tournament Finals on October 29, until Ward suffered an injury that will postpone the bout.
According to ESPN, Ward tweeted, "Bad news: I sustained a cut in sparring a few hours ago. Flew to (Los Angeles) to see the Doc. I got seven stitches. I will let you know the new date soon."
Of the accident, it's been said that Showtime's Fight Camp 360 cameras caught the cut on film. A future episode may illuminate the nature of the cut and how it was caused.
Ward's promoter Dan Goosen offered his opinion of the cut:
I met Andre at the airport last night and took him to see Dr. Paul Wallace and he ended up receiving seven stitches. It was a clean, straight cut, which is good. It heals much better and faster that way rather than it being a jagged one. No nerves or any other part of the eye was affected.
Carl Froch's promoter Eddie Hearns is not convinced. He believes Ward is ducking the Super Six Finals. Hearns had this to say according to Bad Left Hook:
We don't believe it. We won't believe it until we see the cut. We want to see it. We're not happy. If they think they're going to make us wait, Carl Froch is 34 years of age, we've got work to do. And we want to get out and fight in October or November.
What do you think of Ward's injury?
Hearns went on to elaborate why he believes Ward is ducking Froch, saying, "I think he knows Carl Froch is going to take him to places he's never been before, and does he really fancy that? He's a bit of a golden boy in America, his back's never been against the wall."
Froch himself seemed down about the delay, but is still awaiting the official confirmation according to Live Fight:
Obviously this is boxing, but it's a spanner for me and the traveling Cobra fans. If it is confirmed, hopefully a replacement in Atlantic City or a fight back here in the UK in the meantime would be something we'd try to look at. But we're just awaiting official news ourselves right now.
My Two Cents
This injury might actually be a good thing. It's already a month before the fight and the hype was virtually nonexistent.
Maybe a less crowded fight schedule in February or March 2012 will help build anticipation for this match-up.
Also Froch would get a chance to wow everyone in a WBC title defense, further building hype for the finals.
Should Mikkel Kessler (44-2, 33 KOs) face Robert Stieglitz (40-2, 23 KOs) for the WBO world title and Lucian Bute (29-0, 24 KOs) defend his IBF world title against Glen Johnson (51-15-2, 35 KOs) on November 5, the winners could unify their titles on the same night as the Super Six Tournament.
That would build hype for the winner of the Super Six to face the new unified WBO/IBF world champion. Showtime would have to renegotiate millions of dollars and new exclusivity contracts, but the big events they could put on would be worth the trouble.