Sports Mole's live text commentary of the super-middleweight showdown between Andre Ward and Chad Dawson.
Good evening fight fans, insomniacs and 24-hour party people as the new season of boxing gets underway across the pond with a huge world title fight.
Light-heavyweight king 'Bad' Chad Dawson is dropping down a division to challenge unbeaten Andre Ward for his WBC and WBA super-middleweight titles.
Ward will be familiar to domestic fight fans for his most recent bout, a unanimous decision victory over Carl Froch to to win the Super Six tournament.
Dawson is also coming off the biggest win of his career, a convincing display against ring legend Bernard Hopkins.
Here at Sports Mole we bring you live text commentary from the Oracle Area, California as Ward and Dawson collide over 12 rounds.
4.42amRight fight fans, time for us all to call it a night. The boxing season is up and running after a weekend of action from both sides of the Atlantic. Remember to visit us here at Sports Mole for all your boxing needs. Thanks guys, until next time!
4.40amAnd as for Dawson, he will go back to his light-heavyweight home and look to keep his world title. Still plenty of mileage left in his career.
4.37amWard has cleared out the super-middleweight division, thanks to the brilliantly brutal Super Six tournament. If the money is right on HBO you can definitely see him moving up to light heavy to add the tag of world champion at multiple weights to his resume.
4.36amWho would you like to see fight Andre Ward next fight fans. A re-match with Carl Froch or Mikkel Kessler in 2013?
4.35amWell Andre Ward has put down quite a marker in the early weeks of the new boxing season. Good luck following that!
4.34amClassy stuff from Chad, gracious in defeat. Nice to see.
4.33amDawson: "Ward is an excellent champion. He deserves to be where he is right now."
4.32amHere comes Chad for an interview with HBO: I wanted to fight the best. I fought the best. I'll go back to 175 and continue my reign there."
4.31amWeight issues and Dawson looking drained will no doubt be called into question in the post-fight reaction. Dawson is normally a classy operator and I can't see him using those excuses.
4.30amHave to feel for Chad Dawson there, simply in too deep, even for a champion with his credentials.
4.29amIn all honestly after the clinical, composed nature of that performance, I can't see too many guys knocking down doors to challenge Andre Ward.
4.28amWard: "Against the better competition, I rise to the occasion. I don't know what's next after that. A move to light-heavyweight at some point is not out of the question."
4.27amWard: "I love to win, finishing guys is the last piece of the puzzle."
4.26amLarry Merchant is in position for the HBO interview, let's here from the still super-middleweight king.
4.25amWard reputation should grow exponentially after that performance. Dominant barely does it justice.
4.24amGood call by the referee there in the 10th. He gave Dawson every chance to continue, but Chad acknowledged his fight was over.
4.23amWard has proved hos pound-for-pound credentials once again. Dawson is a genuine world champion in his own right but he was blown away throughout.
4.22amThat was a systematic beatdown, summed up by a n accumulation of punches to finish the job in the tenth.
FIGHT OVERThe referee looks into Dawson's eyes and asks him if he wants to stop it. He says yes and the fight is over!
KNOCKDOWNWard is first to the punch once again with a short right cross. He follows up with a combination and Dawson is down again.
Round 10Dawson launches a flurry but Ward is untroubled.
Round 10Dawson has three rounds to turn this fight round. Ward is bobbing on his toes and looks fresh and confident.
Round 9Scully is going for the full Any Given Sunday speech in the Dawson corner.
Round 9Dawson ends the ninth wrapped up in Ward's guard.
Round 9Dawson responds with a solid left hand, can't fault his bravery in the second half of this fight.
Round 9Ward stuns Dawson with a rocket of a right.
Round 9John Scully is trying to talk Dawson into a big finish, but his man might not be up to the task.
Round 8Ward is up against the ropes but still unleashes a flurry of shots inside to end the eighth round. Superb, tactical precision from the champion. Dawson's cut above the eye is bleeding once more.
Round 8Dawson ties up and gets cagey. Ward senses a chance and throws a couple of hooks with bad intentions. Can't find a home for a power shot this time.
Round 8Dawson comes forward again but eats a short uppercut. His guard is essentially non-existent. Not like 'Bad' Chad at all.
Round 7Ward looks good for a points victory, if he can turn it on and force a finish that would be a huge statement.
Round 7Round seven comes to an end with Ward landing a strong right hand. That was an untidy session.
Round 7To Dawson's credit he is trying to mount a comeback and push the pace, but can't land with any regularity.
Round 7The fight is playing right into Ward's hands as the pair get untidy on the inside.
Round 7Ward lands a double jab, he's beating Dawson to the punch at every possible opportunity.
Round 7Ward is at it again with some roughhouse tactics on the inside.
Round 6We reach the halfway mark in the fight and Andre Ward is in complete control.
Round 6Ward swarms inside and unleashes a big left hand. Swing and a miss
Round 6Dawson backs Ward up and lands a left hand of his own.
Round 6Dawson takes a right to the temple as Ward mixes up his attack.
Round 6Ward is full of confidence and slaps a left hook behind Dawson's ear to start the sixth.
Round 5Ward surges forward and lands a left hook as the bell goes for round 5. Dawson looked a little steadier in that stanza.
Round 5Dawson begins the long road back with a couple of straight left hands.
Round 5The chants of S.O.G go up for Ward. His Son of God moniker has caught on in his hometown of Oakland.
Round 5Dawson comes out and ties up his opponent, maybe still trying to clear the cobwebs here.
Round 4A replay of the second knockdown shows where the damage was done. Dawson took a massive shot straight to the chin there.
Round 4Dawson makes the bell, but he was knocked down for the second time and looks in serious trouble. Are his legs still there to make a fight of this?
Round 4Dawson eats a right hand, he is being picked apart by some clinical shot selection from Ward.
Round 4Ward looks in complete control, Dawson has a minute to survive in the round.
Round 4Dawson gets up, but he's rocked again by a huge left hook. Dawson is in deep water here in the fourth.
KNOCKDOWNA left hook from Ward, he trips over Dawson's feet and hits the canvas too. The referee scores it as a knockdown against Dawson.
Round 3After a strong start Dawson lost concentration and paid a heavy price.
Round 3Dawson is rocked, he covers up and hangs on until the bell goes for the end of round three.
KNOCKDOWNA beautiful short left hook from Ward and Dawson hits the canvas.
Round 3Ward gets aggresive to start round three. Dawson slips a pair of right hands with relative ease.
Round 2Dawson heads back into the cornet with a cut, think that was caused by a clash of heads.
Round 2A quiet round two comes to an end with Dawson in the ascendancy. One things for sure, Andre Ward will not be able to bully his opponent tonight. This one looks interesting.
Round 2Ward goes long with a right hand as he struggles to work out that southpaw stance in the early rounds.
Round 2Dawson unleashes a beautiful counter. Encouraging start for 'Bad' Chad, he looks sharp and confident.
Round 2Ward ties up Dawson to close the distance as Round Two gets underway.
Round 1That first round was everything the fight world thought it would be, tactical and tense. Slight edge for Dawson, he looked the more aggresive behind that southpaw jab.
Round 1Ward gets close to Dawson for the first time in the last 20 seconds of the round, cornering his opponent and aiming at the body.
Round 1Dawson connects with a right-counter as both men stay at range in the opening round.
Round 1Dawson's reach advantage is notable in the early going as he throws out a tentative jab.
StaredownThe referee gives the pair their final instructions. Touch gloves and its fight time!
3.40amWard doesn't sound like the hometown guy as his credentials are read out. 2004 Olympic Gold Medalist, Super Six Winner, unbeaten world champion, he's had quite a career at age 28. The challenge now is to gain crossover appeal with impressive victories against established champions like Dawson!
Introductions!Would give you very short odds this is the last time Cannon does this ring announcing gig. Buffer's job is safe for life.
Ward Ring WalkAnd here comes the super-middleweight champion Andre Ward. Hilariously Nick Cannon is still receiving a chorus of boos from the Oakland crowd. Bring back Michael Buffer!
Dawson Ring WalkAh, a pleasant surprise. Ring walks are underway, here comes Chad Dawson.
3.34amIt's hard to be root for Dawson in this one after he has given up every conceivable advantage to make this fight happen.
3.32amWard has built an unbeaten career on a combination on blurring speed and strength on the inside. His commanding victory over Carl Froch last December was an exhibition of his skills.
3.29amExperts and bookmakers alike are giving Ward a slight edge for this one. Match Ward's exceptional technical skills to Dawson's quiet, softly-spoken demeanor and that is no surprise.
3.27amDoubt that will bring the main event forward any further, we'll head back to playing the waiting game. Conservative estimate for ring walks at 4am guys. Stay with us at Sports Mole, backing this one to be worth the wait.
3.24amA more experienced fighter than Molina would've taken a knee on the ropes. Have to give credit to the champion though, swarmed quickly to capitalise and make it an easy nights work.
3.22amWas expecting a few rounds of back-and-forth action in that one. Didn't get a chance to warm up there.
3.20amMolina was caught with two huge left hands and could not escape the ropes. I called a slugfest but didn't expect a first-round stoppage.
3.19amWow DeMarco has wasted no time here, its over in a under a minute. WOW
3.18amRight here we go, DeMarco vs. Molina is underway!
3.17amIn a sidenote, Nick Cannon may be the first announcer I've seen at a fight that had his own in-ring introduction. Too a chorus of boos I might add, which I definitely enjoyed. Who is Nick Cannon, I hear you scream? Exactly
3.16amHere we go, some undercard action to tide us over. DeMarco vs. Molina for the WBC lightweight title. This promises to be much livelier than your average undercard fodder from the States.
3.14amEarlier tonight a domestic favourite got the new season off to an encouraging start. Tony 'Bomber' Bellew stopped Colombian veteran Edison Miranda in nine rounds at Alexandra Palace.
3.12amAs always with a late-night fight from across the pond, we have to battle through the undercard to make the main event. Chief support from Oakland is a lightweight scrap between Antonio DeMarco and John Molina, which could prove to be a serious slugfest.
3.10amDespite having the odds stacked against him, Dawson should be applauded for making a bout that deserves the attention of all genuine fight fans. And 'Bad' Chad is adamant he is not in this one to make up the numbers.
3.07amWard is unbeaten in 25 fights, while Dawson has not campaigned at 12 stone since 2006.
3.05amDawson has not only stepped down from light heavyweight to make this fight with Ward happen, 'Bad' Chad is also walking into hostile territory tonight, travelling to Ward's hometown of Oakland, California.
3.03amHello fight fans, thanks for joining Sports Mole as we gear up for Andre Ward's super-middleweight clash with Chad Dawson.