Gary Shaw, Dan Goossen already jockeying for Ward-Dirrell location

There's already some arguing going on for the Super Six World Boxing Classic Stage Three matchup between current WBA super middleweight titlist Andre Ward and his friend and upcoming opponent, fellow American Andre Dirrell.

Rick Reeno of BoxingScene.com reports that the Super Six promoters all met with Showtime, and that Dirrell's promoter Gary Shaw has refused to have Dirrell fight Ward in Oakland, which is Ward's hometown. Ward had his first stage fight against Mikkel Kessler at the Oracle Arena in Oakland, and his June 19 fight with Allan Green will also be there. This is not the first time that someone has disputed the fact that Ward has three straight home fights scheduled, but according to the story, the contracts allow a promoter to refuse a fight located in his opponent's home state or home country. For the most part, that won't be an issue, since to go to Europe and fight Mikkel Kessler, you should probably do it in Denmark, for example, as the most money for that is in Denmark. Same with Abraham in Germany or Froch in the UK. I doubt there'd be a big traveling audience for, say, a Carl Froch-Allan Green fight in Sweden.

But in the States, this was bound to come up. Assuming Ward beats Green in June as most expect, Dirrell and Ward will be meeting in a huge fight (and imagine how big it would seem had Dirrell been awarded the points victory over Froch in the first stage), or at least huge for both of them.

Shaw, predictably, wants the fight in Michigan. Dan Goossen suggested they "flip a coin," which is ludicrous and probably meant to poke at Shaw more than anything, and Shaw then brought up Madison Square Garden. Without a serious undercard, I don't think Ward-Dirrell at MSG does well at all, even considering they probably mean the WaMu Theater. The New York taxes could also be a deterrent.

So where else could you stick this fight? Without some major money thrown either way, Dirrell isn't fighting in Oakland and Ward will not fight in Michigan. Texas is kind of a halfway point, and is increasingly becoming a more relevant boxing location, but you'd again need a good undercard to do much of a house anywhere. Florida and New Jersey both host plenty of fights, Chicago is starting to get back in the game.

Honestly, the site should be as neutral as possible. It shouldn't be in Detroit, it shouldn't be in Oakland. For pure money, maybe they make the most in Oakland, but it's not like Kessler-Ward was some major gate hit either, and as lively as the crowd was, the Joe Louis Arena in Detroit was clearly papered pretty heavily for Abraham-Dirrell.

Both of these guys are good young fighters, but they're going to have to face the financial facts about this fight, too. Where does it make the most money? Where does it draw the most fans? Where can it create buzz?

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