Andre Ward decisions Sullivan Barrera, won’t fight Kovalev next

In an example of perfect match-making, Andre Ward (29-0, 15 KOs) was able to beat the much slower made to order Sullivan Barrera (17-1, 12 KOs) by a 12 round unanimous decision tonight on HBO in his hometown at the Oracle Arena in Oakland, California. It was the perfect opponent for Ward to look good against because Barrera didn’t have the hand speed to give Ward a real test like Adonis Stevenson or one of the other far superior light heavyweights.

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Ward vs. Barrera: The Return of the Prodigal Son

Sullivan Barrera - Sullivan Barrera

Andre Ward meets Sullivan Barrera this Saturday night live on HBO at the Oracle Arena in Oakland, California. If Ward’s successful it moves him one step closer to a meeting with Sergey Kovalev in the fall. Standing in his way is an unbeaten fighter with roots drawn from highly-touted Cuban amateur system. Does the unbeaten Barrera have what it takes to topple Ward? Will rust factor in for Ward having 8 months of more inactivity since his last bout?

Andre Ward signed a three-fight deal with HBO to prepare for a super fight with Sergey Kovalev. After he fought last June, Ward signed with a plan to fight on the Canelo vs. Cotto HBO PPV undercard. A swollen knee caused him to pull out which ended up slowing down the talks for this fight.

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Ward-Barrera undercard quotes for Saturday night

OAKLAND, CA (March 24, 2015) – On Thursday, March 24, fighters featured on the Andre Ward (28-0, 15 KOs) vs. Sullivan Barrera (17-0, 12 KOs) undercard participated in a media workout at King’s Gym in Oakland, California in advance of their March 26 fights at Oracle Arena in Oakland.

Participating in the workout were Roc Nation Sports’ boxing standouts including NABO Junior Welterweight Champion Maurice “Mighty Mo” Hooker (19-0-2, 14 KOs) of Oak Cliff, Texas; undefeated Daniel “Twitch” Franco (12-0-3, 7 KOs) of Rancho Cucamonga, California; unbeaten prospect from Salinas, California Rudy “The Revelation” Puja Jr. (7-0, 6 KOs); and undefeated Junior “The Young God” Younan (7-0, 6 KOs) of Brooklyn, New York. Also in attendance were Chinese Olympic Silver Medalist Zhang “Big Bang” Zhilei (7-0, 5 KOs) and local Hayward, California favorite Aaron Coley (12-1-1, 6 KOs).

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Andre Ward vs Sullivan Barrera: Final Quotes

On Wednesday, March 23, Roc Nation Sports hosted the final press conference for Two-Time World Champion and top-rated pound-for-pound fighter Andre Ward (28-0, 15 KOs) and number one rated IBF light heavyweight contender Sullivan Barrera (17-0, 12 KOs) at Lake Merritt Amphitheater in Oakland, California in advance of their March 26 fight at Oracle Arena in Oakland. Ward and Barrera will meet in 12-round IBF number one position and mandatory position eliminator bout televised live on HBO World Championship Boxing® beginning at 9:45 p.m. ET/PT. NABF Featherweight Champion Joseph “Jojo” Diaz Jr. (19-0, 11 KOs) and top-rated featherweight contender Jayson “La Maravilla” Velez (23-1-1, 16 KOs) were also in attendance on the press conference dais overlooking Lake Merritt ahead of their 10-round NABF Featherweight title fight which will open up the HBO telecast.

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Ward-Barrera quotes

Sullivan Barrera - Sullivan Barrera

OAKLAND, CA (March 23, 2015) – On Tuesday, March 22, Two-Time World Champion and top-rated pound-for-pound fighter Andre Ward (28-0, 15 KOs) and number one rated IBF light heavyweight contender Sullivan Barrera (17-0, 12 KOs) participated in a media workout at King’s Gym in Oakland, California in advance of their March 26 fight at Oracle Arena in Oakland. Ward and Barrera will meet in 12-round IBF number one position and mandatory position eliminator bout televised live on HBO World Championship Boxing® beginning at 9:45 p.m. ET/PT. NABF Featherweight Champion Joseph “Jojo” Diaz Jr. (19-0, 11 KOs) and top-rated featherweight contender Jayson “Star” Velez (23-1-1, 16 KOs) were also in attendance during the workout ahead of their 10-round NABF Featherweight title fight which will open up the HBO telecast.

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Andre Ward faces Sullivan Barrera on Saturday on HBO

HBO Boxing heads to the Bay Area for an action-packed doubleheader featuring a top pound-for-pound fighter and one of the sport’s most-heralded prospects when WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING: ANDRE WARD VS. SULLIVAN BARRERA AND JOSEPH DIAZ JR. VS. JAYSON VELEZ is seen SATURDAY, MARCH 26 at 9:45 p.m. (live ET/tape-delayed PT) from the Oracle Arena in Oakland, Cal., exclusively on HBO. The HBO Sports team will call the action, which will be available in HDTV, closed-captioned for the hearing-impaired and presented in Spanish on HBO Latino.

Other HBO playdates: March 27 (9:00 a.m.) and 29 (11:30 p.m.)

HBO2 playdates: March 27 (3:00 p.m.) and 28 (12:15 a.m.)

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Andre Ward vs. Sullivan Barrera – beware of the underdog

Sullivan Barrera - Sullivan Barrera

Sullivan Barrera (17-0) and Andre Ward (28-0) are scheduled to fight each other this Saturday at the Oracle Arena in Oakland, Ward’s hometown. Barrera, an ex-Cuban amateur who turned pro in 2009, is the mandatory challenger for Sergey Kovalev’s IBF title but he will fight Ward instead who is rated fourth after one fight at light heavyweight. The Cuban is advertised as an amateur standout but the last time he stood out was back in the year 2000 when he won the World Junior Championship.

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Sanchez believes Sullivan Barrera will beat Andre Ward

Sullivan Barrera - Sullivan Barrera

(Photo Credit: Craig Bennett/Main Events) Big Bear Lake, CA: As IBF number one light heavyweight contender Sullivan Barrera (17-0, 12 KOs) prepares for the biggest fight of his career against one of the sport’s top pound-for-pound fighters, Andre Ward (28-0, 15 KOs), at Oracle Arena in Oakland, California which will be televised live on HBO, the 34-year old from Guantanamo Bay, Cuba is calm, confident and ready for anything.

Barrera trains in Big Bear Lake, California with legendary trainer Abel Sanchez. Sanchez is best known for working with IBF, WBA and WBC Interim Middleweight World Champion Gennady “GGG” Golovkin. Sullivan has taken advantage of working with his prestigious coach and being surrounded by other elite boxers like Golovkin. He said, “Camp has been great. I feel great. I am ready to make history on March 26. The best advice I have received was from Gennady Golovkin who told me to work my speed and to fight intelligently. Abel Sanchez told me not lose my cool and to stay focused at all times.”

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