The International Boxing Federation (IBF) sent out a letter to IBF/WBA super middleweight champion Carl Froch (33-2, 24 KOs) on December 31st, ordering him to start the negotiation process with his IBF mandatory challenger James DeGale (20-1, 14 KOs). If Froch fails to do this then the IBF will strip the 37-year-old Froch of his IBF title and then order #7 IBF Andre Dirrell to face DeGale for the vacant IBF strap.
Froch has been holding out for a fight against former WBC middleweight champion Julio Cesar Chavez Jr, because Froch believes that he’s a fighter popular enough for him to fight on pay-per-view in the United States. Chavez Jr has promotional issues with Top Rank, and it doesn’t look as if Froch will be able to get that fight with him anytime soon.
Froch’s promoter Eddie Hearn isn’t keen on matching him against Gennady Golovkin because he doubts that fight would be shown on pay-per-view by HBO. In truth, the Froch-Golovkin fight would likely be the bigger fight in the United States right now compared to a Froch-Chavez Jr fight. Golovkin’s stock on fire right now, and he’s become a good ticket seller.
“We sent him a letter on December 31, ordering him to start negotiating with mandatory challenger James DeGale,” said IBF chairman Lindsey E Tucker to Skysports.com. “They have 30 days to negotiate. If they don’t reach a decision, then we call for a purse bid.”
It’s doubtful that Froch will choose to defend his IBF title against DeGale because he’s not excited about that fight. It’s unclear who Froch will face if he vacates or is stripped of his IBF title, but it doesn’t look like it’s going to be against DeGale.
You can make an argument that Froch’s recent three big money fights against George Groves [twice] and Mikkel Kessler has kind of spoiled Froch, because he’s looking for only the biggest fights now in terms of money-making bouts. DeGale would probably be a good fight for Froch in the UK, but it’s not one that would do anything in the United States because the casual fans aren’t familiar with DeGale.