Andre Ward Face Alexander Brand Aug. 6th

Andre Ward Face Alexander Brand – In October of 2015 Andre Ward signed a 3-fight contract with HBO, which immediately scheduled Ward to face Alexander Brand of Colombia on the undercard of the Saul Alvarez versus Miguel Cotto pay-per-view. The match was cancelled due to a Ward knee injury, and it looked like the Brand fight would go by the wayside.

Earlier this week news came that the match has been revived and it will serve as the main event of an August 6th HBO Boxing card at the Oracle Arena in Oakland.

The announcement follows last week’s confirmation that Andre Ward will be facing Sergey Kovalev on November 19th in Las Vegas. But rather than put the Kovalev fight at risk, the announcement of the Brand fight confirms that Ward is very focused on the task at hand.

Prior to signing with HBO, Ward was at a crossroads in his career. But he signed a contract with a new promoter in Roc Nation sports and initiated a move up in weight class to light heavyweight. The three fight deal with HBO was a sign that Ward was ready to return to regular activity. The idea for Ward was to get two fights in at 175 pounds and step into the Kovalev fight for the third and final fight of the HBO deal. The November injury seemed to cast part of Ward’s plan to doubt.

Ward recovered from the knee ailment and returned on March 26th, winning a unanimous decision over Cuba’s undefeated Sullivan Barrera.

Kovalev fought Canada’s Jean Pascal on January 30th of this year, and he too wanted to stay busy. Kovalev is scheduled to face Isaac Chilemba in a fight set for Ekaterinburg, Russia on July 11th. When Kovalev-Ward was announced for November, many assumed Ward would not follow suit because of the short timeframe.

Despite the risk of taking a loss, the fight makes sense for Ward. It is another payday and another fight he gets under his belt in his hometown. More importantly, it makes the Kovalev fight the last match on Ward’s HBO contract. Should Ward beat Kovalev, he would be in a strong negotiating position for his next contract, which is what he and Roc Nation want.

Brand is 25-1 overall, with the lone loss of his career coming at the hands of current 168 lb world titleholder Badou Jack in an eight rounder, via split decision. Brand has long campaigned at super middleweight and he too is moving up to light heavyweight.

Andre Ward Face Alexander Brand

 

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COMMENTS

-brownsugar :

Ward was also scheduled to fight Brand on the undercard of Cotto Canelo until things fell apart. Brand is Columbian, 38 years old and is quite the flashy two fisted semi-slick boxer, especially since Columbia is pegged as being the home of hard punching brawlers, Brand breaks the mold and can even hook off both sides while moving smoothly in reverse. He will undoubtedly provide Ward with some good work despite being an obvious cherry-pick. And the fight with SK was signed months ago accordingly to Ward.


-brownsugar :

Badou Jack's impression of brand was short but sweet: "He made me look bad"


-King Beef :

B-Sug, haven't seen much of this Brand, I will have to look him up. Just hope there are no hiccups that stop the Kovalev/Ward fight from happening.


-brownsugar :

B-Sug, haven't seen much of this Brand, I will have to look him up. Just hope there are no hiccups that stop the Kovalev/Ward fight from happening.
Brand must have changed his name to repackage himself for global consumption but he really is an exceptional boxer, not the stereotypical Columbian slugger we are used to seeing. Just good enough to keep this exhibition from being a waste of time,. Brand is the perfect choice to keep Ward sharp. Brand is way more lively and interesting than Paul Smith, but the outcome should be similar. You can catch a few rounds of Brand on YouTube


-larueboenig :

Who is Brand? Never heard of him.


-oubobcat :

Brand must have changed his name to repackage himself for global consumption but he really is an exceptional boxer, not the stereotypical Columbian slugger we are used to seeing. Just good enough to keep this exhibition from being a waste of time,. Brand is the perfect choice to keep Ward sharp. Brand is way more lively and interesting than Paul Smith, but the outcome should be similar. You can catch a few rounds of Brand on YouTube
I saw the Brand fight in December. He is tough and determined, won that fight mostly by out willing his opponent. Brand actually does have decent pop. He is easily the hardest puncher Ward is facing since returning last June. Not a one punch ko guy but decent pop. It's Brand's obvious weaknesses though that made him a target by Ward not once but twice. Brand wings his punches often and often times throws very wide shots trying to maximize leverage. He can easily be countered especially by a fighter with quick hands. And no head movement. Basically, a sitting duck for skilled fighters with speed. Ward wins this fight easy and early. And looks terrific in doing so.


-brownsugar :

I saw the Brand fight in December. He is tough and determined, won that fight mostly by out willing his opponent. Brand actually does have decent pop. He is easily the hardest puncher Ward is facing since returning last June. Not a one punch ko guy but decent pop. It's Brand's obvious weaknesses though that made him a target by Ward not once but twice. Brand wings his punches often and often times throws very wide shots trying to maximize leverage. He can easily be countered especially by a fighter with quick hands. And no head movement. Basically, a sitting duck for skilled fighters with speed. Ward wins this fight easy and early. And looks terrific in doing so.
Keen observations OB, Brand is a busy opportunist and will throw punches on bunches to create opportunities. Not sure how easy the fight will be, but I agree that Brand's combative style will present openings for Ward.


-amayseng :

It is a good idea for Ward to shake off some more rust and get his timing back before the Kovalev fight which can not come fast enough seeing as Canelo is hiding under his bed from GGG.