The Pugilist

Carl Froch and Adrien Broner do what they want

The Pugilist

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Carl Froch and Adrien Broner in their non-boxing elements

Armed with little more than a four-pack of Red Bull and near-endless supply of chicken pasta, The Pugilist attempted the boxing fan's "perfect game" on Saturday night.

Starting at the very beginning of the British card, he would endeavour to sit through every last round until the very end of the American action in the wee hours of Sunday morning.

Alas, the lights went out somewhere during the fifth round of Antonio DeMarco and Adrien Broner's concluding contest, but there's always next time. Perhaps six Red Bulls is the answer.

Though The Pugilist failed to complete his 100% live experience and had to rely on the replay to see Broner finish off DeMarco, the Saturday was a success, as the fears of pointlessness and predictability were overstated and plenty of questions were answered on the night:

-          Yes, the Andre Ward defeat has brought out an all-new mean streak in Carl Froch, which is mercilessly tearing through unbeaten champions and imported jabronies alike.

-          Yes, Froch does indeed plan to fight Ward — and Lucian Bute and Mikkel Kessler — again in what was labelled post-fight as "2013: year of the rematches".

-          No, Yusaf Mack never was anything more than a convenient prop in Nottingham.

-          Yes, Tony Bellew is a very smart and tough British boxer who at least deserves another try at world title glory.

-          No, Bellew should still not be knocking on Chad Dawson's door any time soon.

-          Yes, Adrien Broner is one of the pound-for-pound best already, aged only 23.

-          Yes, Adrien Broner can pull off pink ring attire.

-          Yes, Adrien Broner's hair is extremely well kept.

It was, of course, the weekend of Froch and Broner. Everybody else — even the remarkable week for Johnathon Banks capped by his upset of Seth Mitchell — were just making up the numbers.

Despite plenty of criticism for his intended 2013 navigation, Froch in his most insignificant fight in years against Mack commanded more interest than any other British boxer not brandishing a tripod.

The three rematches — with Lucian Bute, Mikkel Kessler and Andre Ward — all raise brand new questions. Is there even any point to fighting Bute again? Is Kessler even interested in a return bout? Would he even trouble Ward when he failed to do so the first time?

But if the Mack non-fight proved anything, it's this: as long as Froch continues to thrill when the bell rings, he can do what he likes.

It's a motto Broner has been living by on the other side of the Atlantic. From his professional wrestler-like wardrobe and swagger to his post-fight 'marriage proposal' in July, the American's antics are undoubtedly succeeding in grabbing attention. Being a topnotch competitor in the ring serves to reinforce his creative license.

Broner was stripped of the WBO super featherweight title he won in 2011 for failing to make weight for his second defence this summer against Vicente Escobedo.

'The Problem' shrugged his shoulders, smashed Escobedo in five non-title rounds anyway and made himself the new top lightweight in his first fight at the heavier division.

While I doubt the opinion — that of BoxRec but not yet officially of linear titlists The Ring — will not sit well with Miguel Vazquez, Richard Abril or Britain's own Ricky Burns, it's just par for the course for the boxer dubbed 'the next Floyd Mayweather'.

Both Froch and Broner's untouchable ways look set to be challenged in 2013 by fellow world title-holders in their respective weight classes. The Pugilist will definitely be watching. As will tons of others.

Whether their fights are well-matched or not, which they sometimes are and sometimes aren't, they are certified 'made men' in boxing.

They have little in common with each other and got where they are in completely different ways, but Carl Froch and Adrien Broner each have both hands firmly on their own career steering wheels, and both rides are worth staying awake for.


It gets even bigger for British fight fans this Saturday, as Ricky Hatton makes his return to the ring after three and a half years in Manchester with a loaded domestic undercard. Stay tuned over the coming days for preview content amidst all the build-up.

You can check out the weekend's results from Nottingham, Atlantic City and Los Angeles on the Eurosport-Yahoo! website.

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