Advertisement

Advertisement
Boxingscene.com

Andre Ward: I’m A Different Kind Of Warrior

By Jake Donovan

More often than not, the term ‘warrior’ immediately invokes visions of a face-first brawler who bleeds if you stare hard enough at him. He’s the guy rising from one knockdown after another to somehow will himself to victory or at least go out on his shield.

To hear unbeaten super middleweight titlist Andre Ward label himself as a warrior is surely to turn quite a few heads. Rare is the occasion where the Oakland native finds himself in a heated battle, much less forced to overcome adversity.

He’s barely lost rounds in running the tables in the SHOWTIME Super Six World Boxing Classic, which comes to a close this weekend when he takes on Carl Froch in Atlantic City. The bout will crown a tournament champion, as well as determine super middleweight supremacy and quite possibly 2011’s Fighter of the Year.

Froch has insisted throughout the tournament that he is prepared to go at full length to achieve such goals. His career is living proof that the Brit will give everything he has and then some in order to win.

Most would view the above as the most common form of a boxing warrior.

Ward has yet to be forced to exhibit such traits, yet firmly believes he’s just as deserving of the label.

“I’m a warrior,” Ward (24-0, 13KO) proudly states. “People only give the warrior tag if you get cut every other fight or if you’re in a Fight of the Year candidate every other fight. But I’m a warrior and I’m coming to win something and take something.”

Ward believes it’s his fighting mentality that makes him a warrior, and his preparation that helps him avoid taking the type of punishment that is normally the case for the traditional in-ring soldier.

That very mentality has allowed him to remain unbeaten as a pro, in fact with his last loss in the ring coming when he was a 13-year old amateur. The 14-year win streak includes a super middleweight title as a pro and a Olympic Gold medal in the 2004 Summer Games.

Ward currently serves as the only active American fighter to have captured Olympic gold, a distinction he has carried ever since Oscar de la Hoya called it a career three years ago. It’s a status he carries with pride, the same fighting pride he brings into the ring no matter the opponent.

Much of the lessons come from Virgil Hunter, the only man who has ever trained Ward ever since putting on his first pair of gloves as a child in California’s Bay Area. Yet despite a lifetime of discipline and professionalism, his desire and willingness to engage are still challenged by his opponents – and on occasion by some in the media.

“For some reason, there seems to be questions from Froch’s camp and the media about toughness, physicality, things like that. There’s a sense that I’m looking to squeak by in this fight. You don’t squeak by fights at this level. You take them and that’s what I plan to do.”

What he won’t do is talk about doing these things; he’ll just simply do them. And he’ll do them at his pace and leisure. The work he puts in during training camp allows him to fight that way, not the way others prefer.

“There’s been a lot of talk, too much talk in my opinion. This is my favorite time, when it’s time to get down and showdown. The fight is a few days away; I love to speak the loudest on the night of the fight. I love big moments like this. I love big fights like this. Carl Froch is the self-proclaimed best fighter in England. I love it. I want to fight the best and I want to beat the best.”

Until fight night, don’t expect much else from Ward, other than the same humble star you always see. There’s no need to pretend to be something that he’s not, because he’s content with his own definition of how a true warrior carries it.
 
“I’m always like this: firm. It is a few days away from a big fight. But just like my fighting style, people will throw things out there, like I’m a ‘nice guy… a family guy - which I am. And people will get caught up in the press what they read rather than looking at me for who I am. I’m a warrior. I’ve been away from my family. This is the purpose of training camp, to get you in this mode.”

Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com. Follow Jake on Twitter at twitter.com/JakeNDaBox or submit questions/comments to [email protected]

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by Dave Rado on 12-15-2011

[QUOTE=Freedom.;11564982]Ward is a fraud. A real "Son of God" wouldn't use dirty, illegal tactics like headbutts to win. And wouldn't hire Victor Conte to make his PED use undetectable.[/QUOTE] His "son of god" "I'm so holy" stuff is nauseating but…

Comment by Mike Haynes on 12-15-2011

If you don't stagger Ward repeatedly or knock him down, you don't win the round. Anything close (which is MOST of the rounds he fights) he gets the points. I mean, I've watched him stand there whiffing with jabs, run…

Comment by Dudley on 12-15-2011

[QUOTE=Freedom.;11564982]Ward is a fraud. A real "Son of God" wouldn't use dirty, illegal tactics like headbutts to win. And wouldn't hire Victor Conte to make his PED use undetectable.[/QUOTE] TRUE TRUE. I hope both keep it clean and have a…

Comment by jazluvr on 12-15-2011

Ward will beat Froch and then beat Bute. I'll bet on that.

Comment by Ringlife on 12-15-2011

It doesn't get any better than this at 168 Ward vs Froch can't wait for this fight.

Post a Comment - View More User Comments (19)
Top Headlines Chavez: I Was Inactive, Injured, Didn't Train - So Canelo Picked Me Klitschko Smiles: I Know What Joshua is Thinking, What He Will Do LIVE Top Rank Fight Results From Burbank, California Photos: Zambrano-Marrero, Rosario-Gallimore - Official Weigh-In Former Opponent Reflects on How Joshua Ended His Career Joshua: This Could Be Easy, I Could Go in and Catch Klitschko Amir Khan: It Makes Sense To Fight Kell Brook Now! Bellew Claims Joshua Threatened Klitschko During Face To Face Photos: Canelo vs. Chavez - Their Brothers Are Ready For War! Casey Ramos Will Aim To Impress Against Beltran in Burbank Klitschko Says The Spirit of Steward Will Be With Him at Wembley D'Mitrius Ballard vs. Ulises Sierra - Golden Boy on ESPN, May 18 Kubrat Pulev Defeats Kevin Johnson, Eyes Joshua-Klitschko Winner Tyson Fury: Back To Training, On a Mission To Set Record Straight Lennox Lewis: Joshua is Backed By Entire Country, I Never Was Wilder to Bellew Face-to-Face: You Ain't Dealt With This Power! Klitschko: I Never Seen Joshua Look So Big, He's Schwarzenegger Joshua Annoyed With Klitschko Saying Wembley Card is "His Event" Amir Khan: Joshua Seems Very Nervous, Hope He Doesn't Freeze Hearn: Fight This Tough Should've Come Much Later for Joshua Joe Cordina: To Have Hearn, Sky Backing Me Is Amazing Photos: Quigg-Simion, Campbell-Perez, Taylor-Meinke - Weigh-In Photos: Anthony Joshua, Wladimir Klitschko - Ready For Battle Hearn: Eubank Jr. Don't Want Golovkin, Father Holding Him Back! Anthony Joshua: I Think I Have To Fight in The U.S.; It's Important Joshua Weighs in at 250 Pounds; Klitschko Weighs 240¼ Pounds De La Hoya Expects To See Canelo vs. Golovkin in 2017 Frank Warren Has No Doubt Saunders Will Handle Khurtsidze Zolani Tete Targets Yamanaka, Zhakiyanov Title Unifications Frank Warren Reacts To Hughie Fury vs. Joseph Parker Situation Tony Bellew Can't Wait To 'Size Up' To Deontay Wilder at Ringside Warrington Aims To Use Martinez as Springboard To World Level Brook Plans To Chin-Check Spence: He Never Felt Power Like Mine! Klitschko Can't Be Reluctant Or Apathetic Against Joshua Walsh Feels He's Getting Gervonta Davis at The Perfect Time Tony Thompson: Given Chance, I'll Knock Povetkin the F*** Out! Malignaggi: Golovkin Was Not Exposed, Jacobs is The Goods Joshua: A Loss Won't End My Career, But it Could End Klitschko's Malignaggi Backs Canelo: Chavez Jr. Has a Name - Not World Class Juan Manuel Marquez May Fight on June 24 in Toluca, Says Nacho
Advertisement
Latest Active Forum Threads
Advertisement
Advertisement