HOLLYWOOD-A somewhat angry looking Andre “SOG” Ward sat as the two promoters of Saturday's Super Six semifinal clash between Andre Ward and Arthur Abraham traded words and accusations during a Wednesday press conference, especially when one of the Germans commented that Americans talk a lot.
“I’m born and raised in America and I don’t talk that much,” Ward exclaimed.
The stoic Ward (23-0, 13 KOs) and the un-chatty Arthur Abraham (32-2, 26 KOs) will meet on Saturday at the Home Depot Center in Carson. Showtime will televise event.
Wilfred Sauerland, the promoter for Abraham, has tossed around accusations of rival promoter Dan Goossen fixing the judges and referee to favor Ward. Or maybe he’s just playing mind games with the California State Athletic Commission.
No matter. Both fighters are not prone to verbiage. Fighting is more their style.
“We just want to perform in the ring,” said Abraham, 31, whose only two career losses took place in the super middleweight tournament. “We don’t have to do that much talking.”
Talk or not, Abraham started well in the tournament by ending Jermain Taylor’s career with a riveting knockout. Since then, he’s run into differing styles in the rugged Carl Froch and the running Andre Dirrell who stifled his walk-through-the-enemy style that had served him well. Now he faces Ward who can do either style and more.
“I’m locked in and prepared to defend my belt,” said Ward, 27, who beat Mikkel Kessler to obtain the WBA super middleweight title and since then defeated Allan Green and Sakio Bika to remain undefeated in the tournament. “I respect Arthur Abraham and its going to be a tough fight.”
Ward, who is on many pound for pound lists, says that the usual fandom that comes with championships and acknowledgement from writers has not touched his career yet.
“People think a lot of my fights with guys are not entertaining because I don’t take no punishment,” explained Ward. “I’m just going to continue to evolve.”
Undefeated in the tournament, Ward believes that recognition will come in due time and a win over Abraham is another step in that direction.
“I’m going to be who I am,” Ward said.
Abraham said he deigns to become the first German boxer since the great Max Schmeling to win a world title in America. As for his two losses in the tournament:
“We learn from our mistakes,” he said.
Who will win #HOPKINSKOVALEV