Carl Froch has signed to face Yusaf Mack on November 17 in Nottingham. (Photo by Scott Heavey/Getty Images)
Without question, it's not exactly the fight that most boxing fans wanted to see, but it just might be the sort of mid-tier breather that Carl Froch deserves. RingTV.com is reporting that Froch will face Yusaf Mack on November 17, meant as a tune-up for a spring 2013 rematch with Lucian Bute in Montreal.
Froch dominated Bute in his last fight on May 26, stopping the then-unbeaten Romanian-Canadian in five rounds in Nottingham, in about as impressive and dominant a high-level performance as we've seen in 2012. This fight will also take place in Nottingham, but the rematch with Bute is set for Montreal due to a contractual agreement prior to their first bout.
Mack had already been rumored as an opponent this past week, but it was also reported that negotiations stalled and that Mack had gotten "cold feet."
All in all, it certainly could be worse. Over the last few months, names like Mikkel Kessler, Kelly Pavlik, and Thomas Oosthuizen were attached to Froch's fall fight, but all fell out for one reason or another. Oosthuizen, who was probably closest to signing to face Froch, said he felt lowballed by the offer, and was happy to continue his career in the States for the time being anyway. In his position, there's plenty of time to get to a Froch-level fight.
But for Mack, a 32-year-old veteran, there's really nothing to lose. If he happens to pull the massive upset, he sends shockwaves through the sport. If he falls short -- which he's expected to do, and frankly what he's been signed up to do, or at least so the other side hopes -- then he falls short. For him, this is win-win.
Mack (31-4-2, 17 KO) has won two straight against marginal (to be kind) competition, following a TKO loss to Tavoris Cloud.