Joe Calzaghe has been retired for four years, but Andre Ward's team have called him out for a fight. (Photo by Scott Heavey/Getty Images)
In the wake of Andre Ward's dominant win over Chad Dawson, it's easy to wonder where Ward goes next, as the 28-year-old American has basically run roughshod over the super middleweight division, and he's already beaten the world's best light heavyweight.
Ward hasn't mentioned it, but members of his team want a fight with Joe Calzaghe, who retired four years ago as the undefeated super middleweight and light heavyweight king of the game. Calzaghe is considered by many the greatest 168-pound fighter of all-time, as he had a fantastic run in the young division, holding at least one world title for ten years (1997-2007) before finishing his career at light heavyweight with wins over Bernard Hopkins and Roy Jones Jr.
After last December's Ward win over Carl Froch (a former media rival of Calzaghe's), Calzaghe said that he felt in his prime, he could have beaten Ward. This doesn't sit well with trainer Virgil Hunter:
"Joe Calzaghe made the comment that he would have beaten Andre Ward after Andre defeated Carl Froch in the Super Six. We've given Joe the proper respect and acknowledged his legacy for his accomplishments, but if you are going to be minimizing Andre on where he is as a fighter - to make that comment when you are in retirement and sitting somewhere safely in England - if you are going to make that comment, then as a fighter you should come out of retirement and back that comment up."
Personally, I find this kind of dumb. Joe Calzaghe is entitled to his opinion, and the "as a fighter" thing doesn't work since Calzaghe is retired and he's 40 years old. I mean, if Roy Jones Jr, who isn't retired but damn well should be, were to say tomorrow, "I think I could have beaten Andre Ward," would the Ward team be clamoring to make that ridiculous fight?
It's not really that I would have some huge issue with seeing Ward vs Calzaghe if Joe did make the movie hero comeback (or movie villain, depending on where you live, I suppose) -- I've seen worse ideas actually happen enough that I'd be mostly numb to it. But it seems kind of desperate to make "bold" challenges to retirees for daring to say that in their day, they could have beaten Ward.
Still, it does beg the question: Prime-vs-prime (not now), who would you have picked in a Ward vs Calzaghe fight?
Prime versus prime, who would have won: Andre Ward or Joe Calzaghe?
Andre Ward (686 votes)
Joe Calzaghe (585 votes)
1271 total votes