When you look back on the Super Middleweight division over the past twenty years there has been some great champions. The likes of Mikkel Kessler, Carl Froch, Lucian Bute and many more, but two men stand above the rest as potentially the most talented champions that the division has seen. The two men who hold the longest reigns of the division in terms of years held. Joe Calzaghe and Andre Ward.

When you look at Joe Calzaghe’s time in the game you have to just say wow. To finish as a two weight champion with an unbeaten record of 46-0 with 32 stoppages is incredible, but when you delve into the record you see that Joe had some nights where he would be stunning and some where he would come in and go through the motions. There is no denying he had some nights where he didn’t live up to his absolute scintillating best but there were many nights where he absolutely did. One-night stands above the rest though, March 4th, 2006.

Calzaghe was defending his WBO Super Middleweight Title against fearsome puncher and IBF Super Middleweight king Jeff Lacy (21-0 17KO at the time).

A lot of media were predicting a harsh loss for the unbeaten Welshman against a man who had been nicknamed “Mini Mike Tyson” due to his massive punching power, many felt that Lacy would walk through Joe’s slapping shots to stop him in the middle part of the fight. This seemed like an insult to Calzaghe who held a record of 40-0 going into the fight, had held the belt for 9 years and had made 17 defenses of his world crown. However, for the bookies and media Lacy was the next big thing, he had won his IBF crown against Syd Vanderpool (35-3 23KO) and after only three defenses was looking to unify.

So, at close to 2am local time in the MEN arena in Manchester, England, Calzaghe and Lacy laced up and got in the ring. The fight itself was an eye watering one. Lacy was made to miss almost constantly with his big winging shots. Lacy was given no breathing room in a contest that became hard to watch as the beating on Lacy ensued.

Calzaghe threw hard combinations with both hands and the fight could have been stopped numerous times during the contest as Calzaghe simply bullied the unbeaten American and finally sent him crashing to the canvas for the first time in his career in the 12th round. Lacy survived the vicious performance due to his tremendous heart and great chin but his face was a mess by the end. Calzaghe was awarded the contest with scores of 119-107 x2 and 119-105 and unified the WBO and IBF championships whilst also silencing the doubters and made sure people viewed him at the very top of this sport.

When you look at Andre Wards career you see similarities too Joe Calzaghes, Ward too finished unbeaten and a two-weight world champion at both Super Middleweight and Light Heavyweight. Ward may have been more inactive then his Welsh counterpart but there is no doubt he was the number one at Super Middleweight and would dethrone the number one at Light Heavyweight in Sergey Kovalev. But, his finest hour in the squared circle would come in the Super Six Super Middleweight final in a unification fight against WBC Super Middleweight champion Carl Froch (28-1 20KO at the time).

Ward and Froch would meet on the 17th December 2011 in Atlantic City. After a round robin tournament had been created called the Super Six, which pitted six of the best Super Middleweights in the world against each other, two left standing across from each other. The WBA king Andre Ward and the WBC holder Carl Froch.