ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. RING No. 9-rated pound-for-pound fighter Andre Ward, of Oakland, Calif., weighed in at 168 pounds on Friday, half a pound heavier than Saturday night’s opponent, Carl Froch, of England, in advance of their Showtime Super Six World Boxing Classic final at Boardwalk Hall.
The 27-year-old Ward (24-0, 13 knockouts) was greeted by chants of “S.O.B” — a play on the deeply religious fighter’s “S.O.G.” nickname, which stands for “Son Of God” — from a hoard of British fans who packed into the Circus Maximus room at Caesar’s Casino in support of the 34-year-old Froch (28-1, 20 KOs).
Ward’s supporters were also on hand, one with a banner that read “Shut the Froch up!”
As THE RING’s No. 1 and No. 2-rated fighters in their division, they will battle for THE RING’s vacant super middleweight crown, as well as Ward putting his WBA title on the line and Froch risking his WBC belt.
JUDGES DON’T BOTHER PROMOTER DAN GOOSSEN
The fight will be refereed by Steve Smoger, who will officiate the 169th title bout of his 29-year career. The judges are Craig Metcalfe of Canada, John Keane of the United Kingdom, and John Stewart of Philadelphia.
Ward’s promoter, Dan Goossen, said he has “zero” concerns about the judges, despite the fact that Ward-Froch comes in the wake of last week’s controversial, split-decision upset by Lamont Peterson (30-1-1, 15 KOs), over heavily favored Amir Khan (26-2, 18 KOs), of England, that took place in Peterson’s hometown of Washington, D.C.
“I have zero problem with the judges. Everyone is always looking for some type of stories of partiality,” said Goossen. “But these guys are good, competant judges and I’ve got no doubt that they will score the fight as they see it.”
UNBEATEN KELL BROOK, EDISON MIRANDA HIGHLIGHT FROCH-WARD UNDERCARD
Unbeaten British welterweight Kell “Special K” Brook (25-0, 17 KOs) weighed in at 148 pounds, half a pound more than counterpart Luis Galarza (18-2, 14 KOs), of Tennessee, whom he will meet in a 10-round bout on what is a stacked undercard for Froch-Ward.
Also on the card is Los Angeles-based heavyweight Bowie Tupou (21-1, 16 KOs) against Donnell Holmes (33-1-2, 29 KOs) of Ivanhoe, N.C. They weighed, 242, and, 226, respectively.
Puerto Rico-based Colombian Edison Miranda (34-6, 29 KOs) weighed half a pound more than Houston’s Cornelius White (17-1-1, 15 KOs), coming in at 175-pounds compared to 174.5 for their light heavyweight bout.
New York-based junior middleweight Boyd Melson (6-0, 3 KOs) weighed 155.5, and his rival, Harrisburg, Pa.’s Daniel Lugo (9-1, 4 KOs), was 152.5. They will meet in a scheduled six-rounder.
An army reserve captain, Melson donates his earnings to teamfighttowalk.com and justadollarplease.org, organizations which raise money for America’s first clinical trial using stem cells to treat spinal cord injuries.
New Jersey’s John Lennox (7-1, 3 KOs) weighed in a 224.5, and will face Pennsylvania’s Jeremiah Witherspoon (2-1, 1 KO), who was not present at the event. They will meet in a four-round heavyweight bout.