“The Standing Eight Count”-
Ringside At Ward vs. Abraham
By Dave Wilcox
On October 17th, 2009 Group Stage 1 of the Super Six World
Boxing Classic got under way with “King Arthur” Abraham
thrilling the boxing world with a dramatic 12th round
knockout win over Jermaine Taylor. Just one month later on
November 17th, Andre “S.O.G.” Ward made his Super Six debut
with a surprisingly easy technical decision victory win over
Mikkel Kessler to snatch Kessler’s WBA Super Middleweight
belt. The bout was stopped in the 11th round when Kessler
couldn’t continue with cuts over both eyes. At the time of
the stoppage, Ward was comfortably ahead on all three cards.
Flash forward to this past Saturday night at the beautiful
outdoor area at The Home Depot Center in Carson, California
where Andre Ward and Arthur Abraham kicked off the much
anticipated Super Six Semi-Finals. Ward’s WBA strap that he
snatched from Kessler in Group Stage 1 was on the line, as
well as the right to face the winner of the Carl Froch-Glen
Johnson fight in the other semi-final bout that will take
place in Atlantic City on June, 4th for Froch’s WBC
As the fighters entered the ring on this cool California
evening, the pro-Abraham crowd made their presence felt with
near deafening cheers for their man. One would have thought
with Ward’s hometown being just north up Interstate 5 in
Northern California that he would have had the hometown
advantage. The Armenian population of Los Angeles made sure
that didn’t happen.
As the bell for round one rang, it was apparent that Ward
was going to try and keep his distance and utilize his very
strong jab to keep the very powerful “King Arthur” at bay.
Although the action in the ring was slow to start in round
one, the energy and excitement was throughout the arena.
Abraham picked up the pace in the second round and stalked
the quicker Ward. Flurries where exchanged and even though
Ward was able to stay clear of Abe’s power, it appeared that
Abraham was closing the gap and was much more aggressive
here than in his previous effort in losing a lopsided
decision to Carl Froch his last time out.
Abraham got Ward’s attention in round three with a very
stiff jab and solid overhand right. It appeared from
ringside than when Ward was jabbing, he was dipping down to
his right, thus leaving himself open for Abraham’s powerful
Andre Ward came out strong in round four we started to see a
shift of momentum as Ward used his superior jab to great
effect and Abraham showed signs of frustration with his
inability to land on the elusive Ward.
What started out as an intriguing and competitive night
quickly turned into a typical Andre Ward performance. Ward
controlled the action the rest of the way and coasted to a
unanimous decision victory over the frustrated Arthur
Abraham. Ward’s style might not be pretty or fun to watch
but he is always very skilled and will continue to be a hard
man to beat for anyone in the Super Middleweight division.
As for Arthur Abraham, it appears he will have continued
trouble at 168 pounds. There are too many bigger and quicker
fighters at that weight for him to be competitive. He might
want to consider moving back down to the Middleweight
division where there are many good matchups for him and he
would be a money maker for any current 160 pound king. The
official score cards read 120-108, 118-110 and 118-111. Your
friendly neighborhood reporter had the bout scored 119-109.
Andre Ward weighed in at 168 pounds and improved his record
to 24-0, (13KO)
Arthur Abraham weighed in at 167 pounds and falls to 32-3,
In the co-main event, one of our sport’s most talented fat
men actually appeared to put down the fork and finally stay
true this time to the promise he makes to his fans after
each fight to take boxing seriously and get in shape. Chris
“The Nightmare” Arreola of Riverside, California stepped in
against professional opponent Nagy Aguilera of Newburgh, New
Arreola weighed in for this bout at 234 pounds and appeared
to be in good shape as the robe came off Saturday night. The
last time “The Nightmare” came into the ring that light was
at in July of 2007 when he knocked out juggernaut, Derek
Berry in the first round at the very same Home Depot Center.
Arreola has been a mystery to most both physically and
mentally with his emotional outbursts on television
interviews and his inability to come into a bout in shape.
This time it appeared he might have conquered at least one
of those feats.
As round one began, Arreola came out confidently and worked
the body of Aguilera. A few right hands found the mark on
Nagy’s chin, but for the most part, round one was a feeling
In round two, Arreola had “felt out” enough and came out
quick with a furry of hard punches that sent Aguilera
reeling back to the ropes. Arreola pounded on his opponent
and it seemed the end was near. To everyone’s surprise, good
ol’ cement head, Aguilera not only took the barrage, but
spun Arreola and started landing his own hard shots. This
was the moment of truth for the Mexican slugger as he
appeared frustrated that Aguilera not only withstood his
charge, but fired back. Now we would get our answer on
Arreola’s condition, both mentally and physically.
Arreola came out on fire in round three and pounded Aguilera
with some horrific left hooks to the body and pounded the
head of Aguilera relentlessly until a huge right hand landed
on the head of the defenseless Nagy Aguilera that prompted
referee, Raul Ciaz, Jr. to stop the bout at 1:58 of the
Chris Arreola weighed in at 234 pounds and improved to 31-2,
Nagy Aguilera weighed in at 238 pounds and drops to 16-6,
-In a scheduled six round Super Middleweight affair, 2008
USA Olympian, Shawn “Manos De Oro” Estrada, from East Los
Angeles, California (12-0, 11KO) continued his assault on
the helpless tomato can community when he stepped in against
Joseph Garner of Woonsocket, Rhode Island (7-3-1, 1KO).
Estrada landed devastating left hook than paralyzed his
overmatched opponent at 1:27 of the first round.
-Another 2008 USA Olympian was on the card as Javier “El
Intocable” Molina of Norwalk, California (6-0, 4KO) looked
to continue his unbeaten streak against Danny Figueroa from
Hastings, Minnesota (3-2,2KO) in this four round Junior
Middleweight contest. Molina coasted to a unanimous
decision. All three official scorecards read 40-36.
-Junior Bantamweights hit the ring for a scheduled four
round bout. Matt Villanueva (6-0, 6KO) from Van Nuys,
California stepped in against Frank Guitierrez (2-10-2, 1KO)
of Highland, California. Villanueva came out fast and put
Guitierrez down early on with a right hand and then finished
the bout with a big left hook flush on the jaw of the
overmatched Guitierrez that forced the referee to halt the
action at 2:56 of the first round.
-Junior Middleweights were next up in a scheduled four
rounder as Armen Ovesepyan (11-1, 9KO) out of Yerevan,
Armenia took on Arturo Brambilla (9-15, 4KO) from
Guadalajara, Mexico. Ovesepyan landed the punch of the night
with a tremendous straight right hand lead that immediately
caused Brambilla to do the “nestea plunge” and the referee
wasted no time in waving it off at 2:44 of the first round.
-More Junior Middleweights were up next in a scheduled six
round bout. Andrey Klimov 11-0, 6KO) of Van Nuys, California
squared off against Ty Barnett (18-2-1, 12KO) hailing from
Washington, DC. On paper this appeared to be a nice matchup,
so much for paper. Klimov dictated the action and ended it
swiftly with a left hook to the body, followed by a right to
the jaw that sent Barnett to dream land. The referee called
the action at 1:12 of round three.
-Middleweights hit the squared circle for a scheduled six
rounder as Dominik Britsch (22-0, 8 KO) of Bad
Friedrichshall, Germany took on Delray “Rainmaker” Raines
(18-10-1, 13KO) out of Paris, Arkansas. If nothing else,
Raines proved that he was game, but Britsch was just too
skilled for Raines on this night. In a strange coincidence,
Raines was knocked down in rounds two, three and four, all
within 10 seconds of the bell sounding to end the round. In
round five, Raines wouldn’t be as lucky when the German
landed a thundering right hand to jaw the kept Raines down
for good as the referee haled the bout at 2:21 of round
-The final bout of the evening followed the main event and
myself and the four other guys stayed to watch as
Heavyweights were scheduled for eight rounds. Manuel “El
Toro” Quezeda (29-7, 18 KO) from Bakersfield, California
squared off against Bowie “Bo” Tupou (20-1, 16 KO) from Los
Angeles, California. You might remember Quezada as the guy
who lost a ten round decision to Chris Arreola back in
August of last year on a card televised on ESPN Friday Night
Fights. As is usually the case with Heavyweights, these two
did the best to put the handful of us still there to sleep
as they plodded forward. The two exchanged on occasion for
the first six rounds, but then in surprising fashion in
round seven, Tupou landed a damaging left hook that had “El
Toro” stunned and then “Bo” followed with a right hand to
the jaw that Quezada never saw coming and when he couldn’t
make the count of ten and bout was called off at .53 seconds
of round seven.
*Dave Wilcox is the West Coast Coordinator and Radio
Correspondent for The “Talkin Boxing with Billy C.” Radio
program. The show runs LIVE, five days a week and for two
hours a day. Listen live on
www.Maxboxing.com daily. If you can’t listen live, sign
up for the podcast and listen at your convenience anytime.
www.BillyCBoxing.com for all podcast info.
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