Kelly Pavlik Has “Very, Very Good Discussion” With Top Rank, Aims For Two Tune-Up Bouts Then Winner Of Froch-Ward Or Bute-Johnson

By James Slater: Former middleweight king Kelly Pavlik is hungry again, and focused on regaining past glories. In a new article, Pavlik spoke about his successful meetings with Top Rank and manager Cameron Dunkin, and “The Ghost” also outlined his comeback plan.

The hugely popular Youngstown warrior says he would like to have two tune-up fights, before facing either the winner of the November 5th Lucian Bute-Glen Johnson fight or the winner of the December 17th Carl Froch-Andre Ward meeting. Needless to say, if Pavlik can get his momentum back with two straight wins, preferably impressive KO wins, either fight would be a big, big attraction.

Beaten only by modern day greats Bernard Hopkins and, more recently, Sergio Gabriel Martinez, Pavlik is young enough at age 29 to be able to come again. Now that all his personal demons have seemingly been exorcised, and now that Pavlik has patched things up with his team and with promoter Bob Arum (who, as we know, was not best pleased when Pavlik dropped out of his planned August fight with Daryl Cunningham, due to a money issue), there is a clear path ahead for a successful ring return.

Pavlik, 37-2(32) is certainly feeling optimistic right now.

“If it’s a possibility, I would like to take on the winner of those [fights],” Pavlik said to Ring when speaking of the Ward-Froch, Johnson-Bute fights. “Right now, I think that we have to make certain fights, you know as set up fights and then fight whoever has the titles. Carl Froch is a big name, and Lucian Bute’s still not out of the question.

“There are a lot of big names out there. But I think that I’d want to get about two more fights in before I take any of those bigger steps. I think that everything is going to go well. I think that everything is going to be fine.”

The original plan back in August, was for Pavlik to face Cunningham and then, if victorious, challenge IBF 168-pound champ Bute. But Pavlik was unhappy with the cash on the table and withdrew. Now back and seeing sense, the former middleweight ruler (who has never been stopped) is eager to get going and eventually face the big guys at super-middle. But will Bute want to face Pavlik now? Isn’t the IBF champ looking at facing the winner of the “Super Six” tournament himself?

As for Froch, in the recent past he said he had no real interest in a fight with Pavlik. Will “The Cobra” be available for Pavlik if he wins his fight with Ward?

Despite his past mistakes, Pavlik, I think, deserves a big chance at 168. His style is exciting, Pavlik is a humble guy and he has always wanted to fight the best. Hopefully, Pavlik will stay focused, take whatever money is offered to him as he works his way back to peak fitness with his planned tune-ups, and then get a massive fight with a Froch a Ward or a Bute.

And if by that time he is firing on all cylinders, you wouldn’t bet against Pavlik beating either guy!

Article posted on 22.10.2011

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