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Andre Ward: Number One, Pound For Pound?

BY The Sweet Science ON November 21, 2012
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WardDawson TJHogan3Andre Ward’s demolition of reigning light heavyweight champion, Chad Dawson has vaulted him near the top of many fight fans’ pound-for-pound lists. Some even have Ward moving all the way to the top spot past perennial kingpin, Floyd Mayweather, Jr.

I wanted to get perspective from someone inside Ward’s camp, so I reached out to strength and conditioning coach, Edward Jackson, and asked him if Andre Ward (26-0, 14 KOs) was truly the best pound-for-pound fighter in the sport today.

Not yet, says Jackson.

“We’re still trying to get better. Until Floyd leaves, we really don’t feel like we’re number one. We call him an old man for being thirty-five years old, but the old man can still fight!”

Edwards says he’s happy Ward is starting to receive the recognition his fighter deserves, though he’s not sure it will translate into respect from Ward’s opponents. Jackson says everyone who faces Ward tends to underrate the undefeated champion before they step in the ring with him.

How could someone like Ward be taken lightly? Easy, says Jackson. It’s all about perception.

“He’s not as flashy as some other guys, so they don’t think he’ll be a problem until they get into the ring with him. Once they do, they realize it is way different than what they thought.”

I asked Jackson what could be so different. After all, I reasoned, Ward has put on some terrifically impressive performances as of late.

“A lot of people underrate his physicality,” he said. “They look at him as a humble, church-going guy who talks to everybody and they take that as weakness, but in the ring he is vicious. He hits harder than people think. He’s more physical than they think. He’s definitely meaner than people think.”

Edwards would know. He’s been with Ward since the fighter was just seventeen-years-old, helping hone the TBRB-recognized champion, alongside head trainer Virgil Hunter, into the best fighter he can be.

“Andre’s not a talker,” he said. “He’s a doer.”

Now, with Ward coming into what appears to be his prime, Jackson said he and the rest of Team Ward are enjoying the fruits of their labor. He reminded me that after only eleven or twelve professional fights, some of the more fickly fight fans and media members were already calling for Ward to step up to a world title bout. Ward’s team didn’t listen to it, and now they feel as though their patience has paid off.

“We look like geniuses now,” he told me.

Next up for Ward appears to be former middleweight champion Kelly Pavlik. Jackson told me Ward will be ready for the best version of Pavlik ever seen, and that his world class ability would not go overlooked.

“We’ll prepare for the Pavlik that beat Jermain Taylor twice,” he told me. “Pavlik can still punch. He’s got an excellent trainer in Robert Garcia, and he’s still a dangerous guy.”

A win over Pavlik would be a notch on his resume, but it shouldn’t vault him further up anyone’s pound-for-pound list. Still, should Andre Ward continue to be as successful as he’s been thus far in his career, he should remain in the conversation for years to come.

deepwater says:

Not yet,don't jump the gun. He is on course if he keeps adding scalps the way he has but he needs a handful of meaningful fights first. A rematch and wins against froch and Kessler won't hurt. If Sergio Martinez fights 180 lb chavez why won't he fight ward? That would be a nice old school win for ward. Super middle weight knocks out current light heavy weight and middleweight champions is impressive. Just look at may weathers and pacs resume . PAC cleaned out all the Mexican killers in their prime. He ruined hat tons life for awhile. May weather beat many champions along the way. Ward needs 3 more great fights to make a claim. Happy thanksgiving

Radam G says:

I agree with Deepwater. SOG is closing in on numero uno, but he is not quite there. Holla!

brownsugar says:

Ward is the best boxer in the business,.. followed closely by Donaire IMHO (when he's having a good day)... but P4P #1 status doesn't come until a fighter can entertain as well as he can box. A few more performances like the one SOG had against Dawson will put him there.

ali says:

1.Mayweather
2.Ward
3.Donaire
I believe all 3 of these fighters have never taking PEDs and have beat top opposition without losing. Pac lost to Marquez in there last fight but he got a gift decision. He did beat Bradley but the judges blew it so I won't fault him for that so he's 4th on my list.

brownsugar says:

1.Mayweather
2.Ward
3.Donaire
I believe all 3 of these fighters have never taking PEDs and have beat top opposition without losing. Pac lost to Marquez in there last fight but he got a gift decision. He did beat Bradley but the judges blew it so I won't fault him for that so he's 4th on my list.


Your firm but fair.

dino da vinci says:

1.Mayweather
2.Ward
3.Donaire
I believe all 3 of these fighters have never taking PEDs and have beat top opposition without losing. Pac lost to Marquez in there last fight but he got a gift decision. He did beat Bradley but the judges blew it so I won't fault him for that so he's 4th on my list.


Really can't argue with this order. In the purest sense of P-4-P, Mayweather owns the category. If you weigh quality of opponent condensed in a modest period of time, the nod would go to Ward.

Radam G says:

Money May is a PEDs taker. Some people believe Santa Claus has never got his fat @ss stuck in a chimney or slade and toy jack in da hood. But the "Boys in The Hood" fudged him up and took red-nosed Rudy and all the reindeer. Haha! Holla!

Radam G says:

Marquez will lose again. And haters will claim that he won again. "Firm but fair" was forced to retire by the Sin City powers that be. More than the feet of the mirage winning Bradley are fudged up. I'm surprised that no scribe has scribbled how Da Manny injuried and deflated several of Bradley's ab muscles. All the blood and fat are misfunctioning in the ab muscles of that roid-using bambi/mirage champion.

Radam G's P4p:

1. Da Manny
2. The Filipino Flash
3. Ward
4. Garcia
5. Mares

Steroids and PEDs p4p:

1. Money May
2. Mirage champ Bradley
3. Berto
4. Lamont Peterson

Holla!

ali says:

Radam what Garcia are u talking about?

Radam G says:

Oops! I musta' fo'got! Number five at steroids and PEDs p4p is the one and only crybaby Marquez. Holla!

Radam G says:

SCLA Ali, that will be "Swift" Danny Garcia outta "The City of Brotherly Love." Philly oughta drop dat brotherly ___ ___ and get some sisterly love. Hehehe! And while Philly is doing that, she oughta display some real champions, instead of that phony-@$$, big-screen one -- Rocky Balboa. Holla!

MisterLee says:

Viloria belongs on the top 10 p4p list imo. He demolished Segura who was Ring magazine #9 a year ago, and just whooped hernan marquez. i wince when he strikes. Also, anyone see this amateur fight of Viloria beating Donaire in Olympic trials 2000? Awesome!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wyGUvkle8Ms

MisterLee says:

Viloria belongs on the top 10 p4p list imo. He demolished Segura who was Ring magazine #9 a year ago, and just whooped hernan marquez. i wince when he strikes. Also, anyone see this amateur fight of Viloria beating Donaire in Olympic trials 2000? Awesome!

[url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wyGUvkle8Ms

Radam G says:

I was at that fight live and in living color. Holla!

Carmine Cas says:

1. Mayweather
2. Ward
3. Donaire
4. Martinez
5. Marquez

Ward is breathing down mayweather's neck, he's a beast. One or two more wins against good opposition and he's there, a fight with pavlik won't help his case though. But I guess it's something different lol and he has a name.

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