London Calling: Froch Vs. Kessler
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London Calling: Froch Vs. Kessler
By Jason Petock, Doghouse Boxing (April 27, 2013)

Carl Froch
(Carl Froch)
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With all of the reckless abandon and free spirited debauchery typically expected in a knuckle-up type street brawl, Nottingham patriarch Carl “The Cobra” Froch (31-2/22 KOs) and Copenhagen icon Mikkel “Viking Warrior” Kessler (46-3/35 KOs) waged a dance of epic brutality against one another in front of an emotional and capacity crowd at the Millenium Dome in London, United Kingdom over the course of twelve punishing and action packed rounds. Their second meeting was just as much of a dramatic contest if not more so than their first clash back in 2010, and the repeat was for the IBF Super Middleweight and WBA Super World Super Middleweight titles respectively. Friends outside of the squared circle, inside the ropes both men gave no quarter as the punches flew with consistency and the deadliest of intentions from either side.

Warring toe-to-toe in a ring designed for movement and fluidity, Froch and Kessler opted instead to engage in a vicious conflict of wills. Picking up where they left off from their initial get-together without missing a beat, the two proud and rugged fighters chose to dig in their heels and truly fight rather than focus on mere technicality. Their battle was a fierce one with Froch showcasing his trademark style of fighting with his hands down all the while luring in a determined Kessler for counter shots, who pressed the bout as well with ripping counterpunching of his own. Each boxer traded blows in timed succession as expected, patiently waiting their own turn to inflict substantial damage on the other. Physically evenly matched, the two boxers engaged in a slugfest that would have felled the average opponent in retrospect.

From the sound of the opening bell tensions were high and the sold out arena was on full alert with electricity that pulsed through the air and sent ripples amongst the crowd. With iron chins and granite wills, Froch and Kessler drifted inside of a pugilistic ebb and flow all evening, as Froch edged out Denmark’s pride with thunderous right hands that found their mark. Kessler to his credit returned rapid-fire throughout the conflict and cut Froch over his left eye with lashing lefts of his own. Somewhat reminiscent of the heated and historically relevant sensational battles between Gatti and Ward and Corrales versus Castillo, this duo’s latest affair proved to be a thrilling barnburner in its own right that left boxing fans satisfied once again and brought a much needed blast of fresh air into a sport that has at times in the past run out of breath with its fans.

The possibility of a third skirmish could be in the cards for Froch and Kessler should “The Cobra” be willing to strike once more against his counterpart “Viking Warrior”. Yet it appears that Froch has his sights set more so on pound-for-pound Super Middleweight kingpin Andre “S.O.G.” Ward (26-0/14 KOs) who defeated him back in 2011. Getting recent payback over Kessler by beating him and absolving one of the two of his only professional losses in the ring, Froch is seeking to settle the score with Ward in the future. Carl pulled no punches in saying of Ward and his skill set, “No disrespect, he’s a purist, but he’s not an entertaining fighter. I could beat him if I get it right”. Said Andre of the possibility of facing the fighter who he’s already beaten once that, “A rematch makes sense. I don’t know if it would be in the United Kingdom or if it would be in the United States.” Andre ironically worked the Froch vs. Kessler bout as a ringside commentator but didn’t rule out a second fight with Carl as long as he can be amply rewarded.

Whether it be Froch versus Kessler III or Ward versus Froch II, either potential match-up would be exhilarating and entertaining for fans worldwide. The choices are there on the table as all the behind the scenes legality and money issues just need to be hashed out in the board room to finalize whichever deal gets eventually made. Against Ward, Froch will need to perfect his boxing game that much more and hope that he wouldn’t lose a second meeting with Ward. In Kessler he would once again go head-to-head with an old friend and familiar adversary and the outcome could be predictable or not given the durability and consistency of Mikkel as an opponent and known combatant. Whoever he chooses, pundits across the globe can rest assured that they will be thoroughly entertained whenever they tune-in to or attend a Carl Froch fight. London’s calling Andre Ward, will you answer the bell?

Jason Petock responds to all his emails. Please send all questions and comments to Jason at: boxingwarrior@hotmail.com

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