The Oracle Arena in Oakland, California will play host to a Super Middleweight bout between Chad Dawson and Andre Ward on September 8th. The bout is for the WBA and WBC Super Middleweight titles held by Ward, as Dawson drops down from the Light Heavyweight division where he holds the WBC title, to challenge for the two belts. Dawson is an impressive 31-1 overall with a high level of competition, while Ward is an undefeated 25-0. Right now Ward is sitting at a nearly 3 to 1 favorite at the books.
Ward is very nearly the total package. He is the United States last Olympic Gold Medalist, he is the winner of SHOWTIME’s Super 6 tournament , he is well spoken and charismatic and he is the undefeated owner of two major World Titles. Yet main stream fame has eluded him.
The main reason that he isn’t a household name is the reason he is undefeated – he fights a precise, methodical style based around an outstanding jab, but he really isn’t a crowd pleaser.
Dawson is unlikely to be the opponent to put him over the top with a big performance either. Dawson has fought at Light heavyweight at a high level, and he is coming down in weight class. Provided he has no issues with the weight cut, he is going to be bigger than Ward and he is probably going to be able to handle Ward’s power.
Both men have had a tendency to go the distance in the last few years, and both own a KO ratio of roughly 50 percent, so smart bettors will take the over and count on this one going the distance.
Ward is 28 years old and at the top of his game. Dawson’s only loss is to Jean Pascal and he has a win over Adrian Diaconu, other than that he has only fought fighters in their 40s (Bernard Hopkins, Glen Johnson and Antonio Tarver) and past their prime, so the line is probably dead on in favor of Ward.
Several of the experts I spoke to mentioned the same word – boring. If you feel strongly one way or another on this one, it may be one of those fights where you put your money down and read the results the next day….