By Ryan Maquiñana
Goossen Tutor CEO Dan Goossen spoke to BoxingScene.com recently about potential opponents for newly crowned Super Six champion and 2011 Fighter of the Year Andre Ward after his landmark victory over Carl Froch last month.
For starters, he rebuffed a recent report in Danish tabloid Ekstrabladet where his German counterpart Kalle Sauerland claimed to “have meetings scheduled with both Showtime and HBO” regarding interest in a potential rematch between Mikkel Kessler—a Sauerland client—and Ward, who is on the mend with a broken left hand.
“They’ve told everyone they’ve contacted us and had discussions, but it’s incorrect,” Goossen said. “We’re sifting through what we want to do and in the next few weeks, we’ll probably hone in on a few different possibilities.”
Another possibility would be matching Ward, who currently possesses the WBC and WBA super middleweight belts, with IBF 168-pound boss Lucian Bute of Canada. Bute’s promoter, Jean Bedard of Interbox, was in talks with Froch’s promoter Eddie Hearn to schedule a home-and-home series between the two fighters.
However, Hearn told TVA Sports that Showtime “would like to have Bute face an American” and that they “control the situation because they distribute the money.”
Goossen maintained his negative stance toward a Bute fight for the time being.
“I did read [the report], and to me, Bute should be out there looking for a challenge from someone that is not coming off a loss before earning the right to challenge Andre, I would imagine,” he said. “Andre went through two years of hard fights in the Super Six.”
Rumors have circulated that Hopkins might be interested in targeting Bute, and he reinforced such notions in an interview with The Ring’s Lem Satterfield.
"My thing is that, right now, if it don't make sense financially, there's nothing to motivate me,” Hopkins said. “So whatever makes sense business-wise, that's where I'm going. And it looks like Bute because I've got a lot of fans in Canada after the two Pascal fights. I have a lot of fans in Canada. It shows that Canada respects boxing and they respect my talents there."
The last intriguing option would be a meeting with middleweight champion Sergio Martinez of Argentina. Both he and Ward have expressed an interest in fighting each other, and a catchweight of about 164 pounds would likely occur if an agreement were ever made.
“I think that’s a great fight,” Goossen said of a matchup with Martinez. “We’ve had conversations on that, but nothing concrete. Just recently we’ve been focused on getting the cast off of Andre, and so every big fight we’re sifting through, and in 2012 we expect bigger things.”
Ryan Maquiñana is the boxing correspondent for Comcast SportsNet Bay Area. He’s also a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America and Ring Magazine’s Ratings Advisory Panel. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org , check out his blog at www.maqdown.com , or follow him on Twitter: @RMaq28. Tags: Andre Ward , Mikkel Kessler