Goossen Tutor Promotions chief Dan Goossen tells BoxingScene.com that he's working to finalize a January 26 HBO date between his fighter Andre Ward and former middleweight champion Kelly Pavlik.
"We don't have a site done yet. I'm going to get Pavlik finalized and I believe that we will. But until it's done, well, you know the business."
Ward (26-0, 14 KO) and Pavlik (40-2, 34 KO) appear on a collision course, and my gut guess is that the only way it doesn't happen is if Pavlik backs out of the negotiations because he feels he's being shorted on money, which has happened before, and as Goossen says, boxing is boxing, and that's how things go sometimes.
But it looks like this is the fight we're going to get. Pavlik, 30, wants a big money deal, and this is the biggest fight he's going to get in the super middleweight division. He's 3-0 this year, with a series of gradual comeback wins over Aaron Jaco, Scott Sigmon, and Will Rosinsky. While those fights don't necessarily prepare him for someone like Andre Ward, they're the fights he needed to get himself back in action.
Certainly, it would have been nice to see him take one more bridge-type fight, maybe against Edwin Rodriguez (who called out Pavlik after his last win), but Kelly's a veteran fighter and wants to make the big fight right now. Even if he were to lose to Ward, as almost everyone will expect, a fight with someone like Rodriguez would still be there afterward.