Andre Dirrell in action this Friday in Shelton, WA
Super middleweight Andre Dirrell (21-1, 14 KOs) has left his promoter 50 Cent and is now ready to resume his career in the ring with adviser Al Haymon guiding his career. The 30-year-old Dirrell, who hasn’t seen action since last year in February, will be fighting on August 1st on ESPN2’s Friday Night Fights at Little Creek Casino Resort in Shelton, Washington.
The opponent is not known at this time, but they’re looking for someone that can step in on short notice to take the fight with the speedy Dirrell. Renan St. Juste was the guy that Dirrell supposed to be fighting on the card, but he went down with a foot injury and won’t be able to take the fight.
Speaking about his long absence from the ring, Dirrell said “Some days, I would look up and then I’d be at a standstill but all the while all I could do was pretty much train. The motivation was there for the most part, but it would be a lot of times where I didn’t even feel like going to the gym because all hope seemed like it was lost. The only thing that kept me going was working out, that kept me sane being in the gym.”
Dirrell’s career has gone stagnant for the most part since he left the Super Six tournament in 2010 following an 11th round disqualification victory over Arthur Abraham. Since that fight, Dirrell has fought just twice, beating Daryl Cunningham in December 2011, and Michael Gbenga in February 2013. The fact that Dirrell has fought just twice in 4 years in troubling, making some fans wonder whether his mind is really into boxing.
With Dirrell now no longer with 50 Cent, it’s going to be interesting to see if he starts fighting on a regular basis now. Having Haymon guiding his career means there shouldn’t be any reason why Dirrell isn’t fighting 2-3 times per year from this point forward. He says he wants to be ranked in the top 15 in order to fight for a world title.
We’ll have to see if this actually happens in the next year or two. There’s no question that Haymon will be give Dirrell plenty of opportunities to fight, but it’s going to be on Dirrell to make the most of the opportunities.
Dirrell has amazing hand speed and excellent skills. With his hand speed and defensive skills, there’s no reason why he shouldn’t have already captured a world title in the past 4 years. He had out-boxed Carl Froch in the Super Six Tournament in 2009 and was arguably robbed of a decision in the fight, which took place in Froch’s hometown of Nottingham. In a rematch, Dirrell likely would have given Froch fits if he had made minor adjustments with in his offense.