November 13th, 2013 By Zak "Attack" Young

Andre Ward-Arthur Abraham

Andre Ward-Arthur Abraham


Los Angeles, CA- Undefeated super middleweight (168 lb.) monarch Andre “S.O.G.” Ward (26-0, 14 KOs) takes on fellow unbeaten Edwin “La Bomba” Rodriguez (24-0, 16 KOs) at the Citizens Business Bank Arena in Ontario, CA on the next HBO broadcast this weekend. Ward is coming off a 14-month layoff, and La Bomba presents a worthy challenge.


Andre has proven time after time that he is one of the very best in the world, and Saturday night will once again reaffirm his status as the number 2 pound-for-pound fighter in the sport behind Floyd Mayweather, Jr. (45-0, 26 KO). It will be interesting to see how Ward looks after so much time off, but I expect the consummate professional hailing from Oakland, CA to shine brightly.


In typical HBO fashion, Ward-Rodriguez will be the only one shown on the network. The undercard is decent enough, with Brandon Gonzalez (17-0-1, 10 KOs), who also trains under Ward’s Virgil Hunter, mixing it up at super middle with another undefeated fighter in Jonathan Nelson (18-0, 8KOs). Last time out, Gonzalez made easy work of Thomas Oosthuizen (22-0-2, 13 KOs) only to be given a draw on the cards. I expect Gonzalez, who is more experienced against top competition, to walk away with the W.


John Molina (26-3, 21 KO) is taking on Gary Russell, Jr.’s (23-0, 13 KOs) favorite opponent; the feared “T.B.A.” Looks like a showcase for Molina, so I would expect him to win and likely by KO with the power he possesses. Also on the card is Sergio Mora (24-3-2, 7 KO) battling Milton Nunez (26-8-1, 24 KO) in a middleweight (160) tilt. Mora is the much more seasoned veteran here, and will likely take a decision over a game Milton. John Signorella will have the complete look at the weekend of boxing late Thursday night here at

Zak Young


  1. I think Molina will do a better job of besting Tom Bob Anderson than Gary has done in his past seven fights. On a side-note, it’s a shame that Lomachenko already has a more impressive body of work than Russell–but as long as the WBC 126lb title is firmly in the Golden Boy camp, expect him to get an undeserved title shot.

    José-Ariel Cuevas on November 13th, 2013 at 11:59 PM
  2. Been looking forward to this fight. On paper looks like a good match up. Couple of sub-plots as well eg how will Andre be after the injuries and long lay-off, especially against a real live opponent.

    Something is bothering me though:

    The WBA 168 title is on the line, right? So AW has hometown advantage, with respect to venue. Ok, no big issue there. But tell me, how come all 4 officials – ref & 3 x judges – are all from California? Rodriguez is born and bred Dominican republic. OK, so he’s also residing and training in Massachusetts.

    But I don’t get it. Looks to me – with respect to the officials – that it’s all set up for Andre to win. Don’t get me wrong – I think Ward is both top drawer and elite. But if I were in ER’s camp I would NOT be happy with the way the fight has been set up. To me it looks like the chances of ER winning have been minimised. Just my opinion.

    Quite happy to listen to those – anyone – that know more about it. Maybe I’m mistaken. And I’m not out to have a dig at Ward – he’s proven himself, up until now, to be the best at 168…and one of the best at ANY weight.

    Sorry, but this looks a little fishy to me. I’m quite happy and willing to be corrected though, if some of you guys can tell me better..?

    Scottish Steve G on November 14th, 2013 at 3:41 PM
  3. Very got points Steve. I did not realize that was the case but you are correct. All three judges are from California. That does seem a bit unfair for Rodriguez. Ward is also the network guy now so he has that going for him as well. I don’t expect this fight to be very close, but if it is, it looks like Ward is guaranteed a decision. On one hand, however, the majority of the crowd will be Latino, so Rodriguez may have them on his side and that could influence things a bit in his favor. Still, judges should be more neutral. The interesting thing is, two of the judges of Ward-Froch had it very close and that was a clear Ward win. Froch didn’t earn more than 2-3 rounds in my opinion. I think Froch is a higher calibur opponent than Rodriguez, but we will find out tomorrow night.

    Zak on November 15th, 2013 at 10:12 AM
  4. I don’t care where the officials are from as long as they are good officials. As for the venue…Ward is from the bay area, the fight in in Ontario, Ca, about 6-7 hours away,. Doesn’t seem like a home court advantage to me, at least from a crowd perspective. it’s funny though…the guy is the champ, why not let him fight at home so he can continue to build a fan base? Rodriguez is getting a huge payday, also he isn’t a mandatory challenger, so I mean he’s got to concede to something. People complain that the guy isn’t a star, but the only way he’s going to get there is to fight in front of decent crowds to build a base of fans. Ontario is heavily latino populated area.Not sure how that benefits Ward.

    KP on November 15th, 2013 at 12:22 PM
  5. Yeah, I used the wrong term: should’ve said “home turf” rather than “hometown”. Ward is born and raised Californian. Rodriguez is from the DR. But as I said above, nothing wrong with that – champs get to defend at ‘home’ all the time. It’s normal.

    I’m expecting Andre to win comfortably. But that’s not the point. Regardless of ER not being a mandatory, this is still a world title fight and the judges are supposed to be neutral. 3 x Californian judges + a Californian referee doesn’t sound very neutral to me. And as Zak said, Ward is also the network fighter. I take the point about the majority Latino crowd, although crowds don’t submit the official score-cards. Just doesn’t seem right to me. Pedro?

    Fair point about the Ward v Froch bout. Andre clearly won by a wide margin. But the Canadian & US judges both (somehow) had it 115-113, whilst it was the UK judge (John Keane) who posted a more realistic 118-110. Ironic, eh? Did they over-compensate? So I admit – having international and seemingly ‘neutral’ judges doesn’t necessarily guarantee actual neutrality. But I think it gives you a better chance.

    As an aside, I would have preferred the Ward v Froch fight to have been 15 rounds. I think it would’ve been a lot more interesting…especially those last 3 rounds.

    Scottish Steve G on November 16th, 2013 at 7:14 AM
  6. I can confirm that the it was a surprisingly S.O.G. crowd. Rodriguez was booed all night and deserved it.

    Zak on November 17th, 2013 at 2:45 PM
  7. i think bhop vs ward would be an interesting fight.

    dondon on November 17th, 2013 at 8:49 PM

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