Hayward native Andre Ward (22-0, 13 KOs) is closing in on a deal that would pit him against super middleweight contender Sakio Bika (28-4-2, 19 KOs) on November 27 at the Oracle Arena in Oakland. Ward was originally scheduled to fight fellow American Andre Dirrell in Showtime's Super Six World Boxing Class, but Dirrell has withdrawn due to neurological injuries sustained during his disqualification victory over Arthur Abraham.
The fight will have Ward defending the super middleweight crown he won from Mikkel Kessler, but the fight will not be a part of the Super Six, which is close to being completely derailed at this point. Ward is currently ranked #2 in The Ring Magazine's Super MIddleweight rankings. ESPN.com's Dan Rafael ranks Ward #1 among Super Middleweights, and 11th in his pound-for-pound rankings.