This is not the first time the famed Super-6 tournament has seen issues. After his first fight, Jermain Taylor withdrew from the competition after being brutally knocked out by Arthur Abraham. To replace him, Allan Green debuted by getting shut out by Andre Ward.
Carl Froch threatened to leave the tournament due to location issues with his upcoming fight against Arthur Abraham. Luckily, that has been worked out. Mikkell Kessler withdrew from the tournament due to a severe eye issue. Kessler was quickly replaced by veteran, the “Road Warrior” Glen Johnson. And now we see the last of Andre Dirrell. Dirrell won his last fight by DQ after being hit while down by Arthur Abraham. Not only may Dirrell pull out of the Super-6, he may never box again.
Citing a reoccurring head injury, a neurological specialist advised Dirrell to not box until he has gone three months without symptoms. His symptoms have led to him having trouble lying down and experience extreme dizziness and headaches. We only hope the best for Dirrell and his family.
This leaves big gap open. The Johnson-Green fight now means more and with a third, new competitor coming in. Johnson, Green, and the new competitor, who has not been chosen yet, all will have 0 points. Ward is already secured himself a spot with his win over Kessler and Green.
Abraham has 3 points for knocking out Jermain Taylor and Froch has 2 for his decision win over Dirrell. With a Froch loss, Green, Johnson or Ward’s opponent can secure themselves a spot in Stage 2 with a knockout win over their opponent. It is do or die for these three boxers.
This leaves the question, who will replace Dirrell? Sakio Bika has always been in the mix of super middleweights. Librado Andrade, who has lost twice to Lucian Bute (once very controversial) would be an excellent replacement. Unfortunately, Sergio Martinez and Paul Williams are both tied up for the rest of the year. Fortunately, it is against each other which promises to be a fight of the year candidate. Either of them would have made Andre Ward sweat more than any other replacement (besides Bute, who is tied up with HBO and has a date against Brinkley). Sebastian Zbik, an undefeated middleweight from Germany is Martinez’s mandatory challenger but would make a competitive opponent for Ward.
A great idea for the tournament would be to throw overnight star Dimitry Pirog into the mix. This Russian has power and the desire to fight the best. If the Super-6 could persuade Bob Arum to bring Kelly Pavlik into the mix, it would save the ailing tournament.
It would be great to see Martinez, Williams, Pavlik, or Bute in this tournament. Even better would be to see the winner of the Super-6 face off with any of these great fighters. Realistically, the Super-6 would do well with Andrade or Pirog. The world awaits as Showtime finds the ninth man to enter and finish this great, but troubled tournament.
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