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Kessler vs. DeGale: Mikkel to possibly face James in April

kessler2By Oliver Norager: Former super middleweight champion Mikkel Kessler (46-3, 35 KO’s) is possibly facing Olympian gold-medalist champion James DeGale (20-1, 14 KO’s) on April 25 at London’s 02 Arena. The fight is for the IBF world title. According to Danish paper, Ekstrabladet, Kessler has gotten a offer from DeGale’s promoter, Eddie Hearn. The Dane’s promoter, Kalle Sauerland said: “I can confirm that his promoter came with a offer, but i can’t say anything more at this point”

This is a big step up in class for the 28-year old DeGale, his best fight so far in his career was George Groves back in 2011, where he lost a majority decision at the same venue where the Kessler fight is going to take place. Lately, DeGale have improved and destoyed decent fighters like Brandon Gonzales and Marco Antonio Periban. DeGale have found some new-found power, so he is able to get his opponents out early. He also seems to put his combinations better together now. DeGale seems to fall apart when things are rough and tough inside the ring. Periban didn’t really do something in their fight, but both George Groves and Piotr Wilczweski pressured the Brit hard in fights, where DeGale didn’t have things going for him and it’s not going to be any different against the quality Dane.

Mikkel Kessler hasn’t fought since losing to IBF/WBA-super middleweight champion Carl Froch in a close fight in May of 2013. In that fight Kessler seemed to sleep the first 3 rounds of the fight. In the 4 round and to the final bell, Kessler was the better fighter. He didn’t throw enough punches, but when he did, he hurt Froch. The Brit was just throwing punches for the sake of it and didn’t really landed anything special. If Kessler had fought back in the first 3 rounds he would have won the fight, but he can only blame himself for not doing that.

This fight between Kessler and DeGale is really a toss-up fight, because DeGale have improved lately and Kessler hasn’t fought in 2 years come fight night. If this fight was 2-3 years back, Kessler would clearly have won the fight, possibly by knockout, but with all the factors mixed together this will make for a great fight.

Kessler with all his ring experience and excellent boxing skills, with some good power should take this fight, because DeGale doesn’t semms to handle pressure very well and he hasn’t faced anyone close to Kessler’s talent. The Dane on the other hand has mixed it with the best of the best. He lost a close fight to a prime Joe Calzaghe in 2007. He got robbed against André Ward in Oakland where the American headbutted Kessler left and right and left him with bad cuts around both eyes. In his next fight Kessler whopped Carl Froch in the Super Six-tournament, in a fight where Kessler out-boxed and out-battered Froch.

The winner of the fight could have some big fight down the line. DeGale could fight Froch in big-British world title fight or possibly a George Groves rematch. Kessler could have his trilogy-fight against Froch at Wembley Stadium. I think that would bring big numbers, especially with Kessler just beating DeGale and knowing with type of fight that Kessler and Froch brings. He could also get his rematch against Andre Ward, but Ward stays in Oakland. He doesn’t travel, so I don’t think Kessler can get a rematch with him.

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