Andre Dirrell’s Matrix
by Juan 'West Coast' Alvarado - For the man known as Andre ‘The Matrix’ Dirrell, a matrix of sorts will be put in front of him in the form of IBF middleweight titlist Arthur Abraham. On March 27th of this year, the man known as the King will present Dirrell with a puzzle of his own in the first bout of the second stage of the Showtime Super Six World Boxing Classic.
Article posted on 18.03.2010
The test put in front of Dirrell is one that no other fighter to date has been able to solve. Thirty one men have tried and thirty one have been sent home with pencil, paper and a non-passing grade in hand. Dirrell will be the 32nd man to take the challenge and for a fighter essentially in a must win situation in this tournament, he is in a non-enviable position.
Abraham brings to the table a very difficult style to fight against. His defensive posture referred to by many as a peek-a-boo style defense has been nearly impossible to penetrate. The last time anyone got through with any success was Edison Miranda who on September 23rd, 2006 went to Germany and engaged Abraham in a brutal war.. Abraham went on to win a unanimous decision from Miranda in a fight in which from the fifth round forward he fought with a broken jaw. OUCH!!! Not only is Abraham a very good defensive fighter, he can take a punch and has shown the heart and courage to stand and fight when he has to. This traits makes him a very difficult to beat opponent and for Dirrell it will be no different.
The flip side of this coin is that Dirrell will present to Abraham a very difficult test also. Add to that the fact that now the fight will take place in Detroit at the Joe Louis Arena. Dirrell now has a true home town edge and he is going to need his fans to really show up and support him given that he was born in Flint, Michigan.
Besides fighting at home, Dirrell brings to the table a combination of blinding speed and boxing skills the likes of which Abraham has never seen. In his initial fight in the Showtime Super Six Tournament, Dirrell dropped a decision to Carl Froch in Froch’s hometown of Nottingham, England. However, as much as some of the expert’s claim that Dirrell didn’t do enough to win the fight and by some accounts stunk up the joint, the Froch victory was a razor-thin one with Dirrell getting the decision from one of the judges. If this fight had taken place in the USA, I believe the outcome would have been in Dirrell’s favor.
This brings us now to March 27th. I am probably going to be in the minority here, but I believe that everything sets up favorable for Dirrell. He’s essentially fighting at home. He has the speed and skill suited for Abraham’s style. Finally, he is in a dire must win situation. This combination of factors I believe will propel Dirrell to hand Abraham the first loss of his career. Abraham has never fought an opponent with this much speed, skill and talent. Add to that the fact that Abraham has been a slow starter throughout his career thus giving Dirrell already the edge in the early rounds of the fight.
In the end I think Dirrell will put it all together and avoid elimination in the tournament. For Abraham, he will just have to regroup and wait for stage 3. The beauty of all this is that fighters could end up fighting each other more than once in this format and who knows, maybe Abraham will have another crack at Dirrell down the road.
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