By Keith Idec
Speculation regarding Andre Ward’s comeback apparently is just that.
BoxingScene.com has learned through court documents it has obtained that Ward and former promoter Roc Nation Sports are plaintiffs in a lawsuit against Lloyds Of London. They seek $6.3 million because they allege the prominent insurance company has failed to honor the terms of his policy after he suffered a career-ending injury to his right knee.
Ward and Roc Nation Sports contend Lloyds of London has wrongfully denied his claim to collect on a policy that was taken out to insure them in the event of an injury that prevents him from boxing again.
Ward, 34, said he suffered what turned out to be a prohibitive knee injury while training in October 2016, the month before he edged Sergey Kovalev by unanimous decision in their first light heavyweight title fight.
The lawsuit was filed December 14 in a Northern California federal court. Ward urged judge Joseph J. Spero on Thursday to not dismiss his lawsuit on the grounds that his knee injury is reason the two-division champion eventually retired in September 2017.
The undefeated Ward was just 33 when he announced his retirement. Three months earlier, Ward had stopped Russia’s Kovalev in the eighth round of their light heavyweight championship rematch at Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas.
Ward (32-0, 16 KOs), who’ll turn 35 on February 23, could not be reached for comment in reference to the lawsuit.
Ward works as a commentator for ESPN, but media and fans continue to suggest he’ll come out of retirement for various fights, including a far-fetched showdown with heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua. The Hayward, California, native himself has hypothetically discussed with multiple media outlets the possibility of boxing undefeated, unified cruiserweight champion Oleksandr Usyk and former cruiserweight champ Tony Bellew, who retired once Usyk knocked him out in the eighth round November 10 in Manchester, England.
BoxingScene.com has been informed by multiple sources, though, that Ward hasn’t had any serious conversations regarding a comeback with those that work for Bob Arum’s Top Rank Inc. Ward was promoted toward the end of his career by Jay-Z’s Roc Nation Sports, but ESPN, Ward’s broadcasting employer, has an exclusive content deal with Top Rank.
Ward previously fought exclusively for HBO, which has stopped broadcasting boxing since Ward retired. Ward also had worked as a broadcaster for HBO.
Despite the rumors, the cerebral Ward also has mentioned many times the greater importance of his long-term health and wanting to spend as much time as possible with his wife, Tiffiney, and their four children.
The 2004 Olympic gold medalist retired atop most mythical pound-for-pound lists. The former WBA/WBC super middleweight and ex-IBF/WBA/WBO light heavyweight champ hasn’t lost a fight since he was an amateur in February 1998.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.