BROOKLYN, N.Y. — RING, WBA and WBC super middleweight champion Andre Ward has a ringside seat for Saturday night’s HBO-televised clash at Barclays Center between former RING middleweight and light heavyweight champion Bernard Hopkins and IBF 175-pound titleholder Tavoris Cloud.
Having successfully undergone surgery on Jan. 4 to repair his injured right shoulder, Ward returned to the gym for light training last week.
When he returns to action, Ward said Cloud would be “an option” if he was to defeat the 48-year-old Hopkins.
“At this stage of my career, everything is an option,” said Ward, 29, who is working as a ringside commentator for Hopkins-Cloud. “I’m just looking forward to a great fight. I really think this is going to be a really good fight. A lot of different variables.”
Ward, who could return in September, and Hopkins have said in the past that they would not face each other, since Ward considers Hopkins a mentor.
The injury to Ward forced the cancelation of his scheduled March 2 HBO-televised defense against former undisputed middleweight titleholder Kelly Pavlik.
Ward (26-0, 14 knockouts) is coming off an HBO-televised 10th-round knockout of RING and WBC light heavyweight champ Chad Dawson in September, this, after having dethroned Carl Froch last December as WBC 168-pound beltholder by unanimous decision in the finals of Showtime’s Super Six Super Middleweight Classic.
A 2004 Olympic gold medalist, Ward became the first man to stop Dawson, whom he floored during the third, fourth and 10th rounds. Ward fought through a broken left hand to defeat Froch and was later named Fighter of The Year for 2011 and the recipient of the Sugar Ray Robinson Trophy from the Boxing Writers’ Association of America.
Photo by Naoki Fukuda
Lem Satterfield can be reached at email@example.com