Andre Ward likely to face Alexander Brand on Aug. 6 at Oracle Arena
Andre Ward will in fact have another tune-up before his blockbuster light heavyweight match against unified champion Sergey Kovalev in November.
Ward, the former super middleweight kingpin, will likely face 39-year-old Alexander Brand on Aug. 6 at Oracle Arena in Ward’s hometown of Oakland, California on HBO, a source confirmed to RingTV.com on Tuesday. The sides have agreed to terms and are expected to finalize the details in the coming days, the source said.
While Ward (29-0, 15 knockouts) won an easy decision against Sullivan Barrera in March, he looked rusty at times in his light heavyweight debut, making the need for another fight perhaps a necessity.
Ward and Kovalev have signed to meet Nov. 19 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on HBO PPV, though they first must win their upcoming fights first. Kovalev (29-0-1, 26 KOs) is scheduled to face Isaac Chilemba (24-3-2, 10 KOs) on July 11 in Russia on HBO.
Main Events and Roc Nation, who promote Kovalev and Ward respectively, agreed to extend the deadline for when they were supposed to have their interim fights from July 30 to Aug. 6, a source confirmed. Ward, 32, was supposed to face Brand (25-1, 19 KOs) on Nov. 21 on the undercard of Canelo Alvarez-Miguel Cotto but the fight was canceled because of problems with Ward’s knee in training camp.
Brand has fought mostly in his native Colombia and has never challenged for a world title; he lost a split decision to current super middleweight titleholder Badou Jack in 2012 before Jack was a champion, and he rose from a first-round knockdown in his last fight in December against previously unbeaten Medzhid Bektemirov to win a split decision.