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Andre Ward's Next Fight: Cleared to Train, But No Set Plans

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Andre Ward is cleared to train, but who can he fight next? (Photo by Tom Shaw/Getty Images)
Andre Ward is cleared to train, but who can he fight next? (Photo by Tom Shaw/Getty Images)
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Super middleweight world champion Andre Ward has been cleared to return to training after suffering a hand injury in his December 17 win over Carl Froch, and says he's anxious to return to the ring after taking a quick break away from boxing, reports Dan Rafael of ESPN.

There is no set plan for what Ward (25-0, 13 KO) plans to do in his next fight. A bout with Lucian Bute, which is what everyone would like to see happen, appears to be off the table for the time being, more due to Ward than Bute not desiring the fight for now.

Anthony Dirrell is the WBC mandatory, and that could happen. The Direll team has expressed a desire to move into those type of fights (not Team Dirrell, but Anthony's team), so that's a possibility.

Despite the super middleweight division's reputation as being "loaded" and the fact that there are plenty of good fighters there, there's a problem when it comes to Ward making attractive fights right now:

  1. Bute isn't happening.
  2. He's already beaten Froch, Kessler, Bika, and Abraham.
  3. Nobody wants to see Andre Ward vs Glen Johnson, Brian Magee, etc.
  4. A lot of the younger guys (Oosthuizen, Chilemba, etc.) are not ready for him.
  5. Andre Dirrell's not going to fight him.

Anthony Dirrell really might be the best option.