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Edwin Rodriguez: I’m ready to get in there and punch Ward in the face



Andre Ward & Edwin Rodriguez get up close and personal at the final press conference before they colllide for Ward’s WBA & Ring Magazine Super Middleweight Title Saturday night in the fight dubbed “THE RETURN.”

Edwin “La Bomba” Rodriguez: “I respect Andre Ward. I think he’s a good fighter. He has accomplished a lot in the sport of boxing, winning the tournament in the Super Six. But, at the same time, I don’t respect him either. I’m ready to get in there and punch that guy in the face. Come November 16th, I will do just that.”

Andre “S.O.G.” Ward: “I’m locked in. I take this sport real serious. And he (Rodriguez) is going to find that out come Saturday night. Everybody talks about how hungry he is as a challenger, but he is running into a hungry champion. I am excited to get back. I’m sharp. I’m ready to be better than ever. ”

Ward vs. Rodriguez Saturday Night on HBO

One of boxing’s biggest names makes his 2013 debut in a stellar super middleweight title fight when WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING: ANDRE WARD VS. EDWIN RODRIGUEZ is seen SATURDAY, NOV. 16 at 10:00 p.m. (ET/PT) from Citizens Bank Arena in Ontario, Cal., exclusively on HBO. The HBO Sports team of Jim Lampley, Max Kellerman and Roy Jones Jr. will call all the action, which will be available in HDTV, closed-captioned for the hearing-impaired and presented in Spanish on HBO Latino.

Other HBO playdates: Nov. 17 (10:00 a.m.) and 18 (1:00 a.m.)

HBO2 playdates: Nov. 17 (5:30 p.m.) and 19 (midnight)

Andre Ward (26-0, 14 KOs), one of the sport’s premier fighters, returns for his first fight since Sept. 2012, after which he sustained a shoulder injury that required surgery and rehab. Making his HBO debut in that 168-pound title bout, the 29-year-old Oakland, Cal. native knocked out light heavyweight titleholder Chad Dawson. Ward’s glittering resume includes a 2004 gold medal from the Athens Olympic Games.

Ward’s foe is fast-rising super middleweight contender Edwin Rodriguez (24-0, 16 KOs), 28, of Worcester, Mass., who will be fighting for the first time in California and looks to build on the momentum he has generated in 2013. The matchup sets up an intriguing showdown.

HBO Films’ presentation “Mike Tyson: Undisputed Truth” debuts earlier in the evening (8:00-9:30 p.m. ET/PT), followed by the debut of episode two of the all-new reality series “24/7 Pacquiao/Rios” (9:30-10:00 p.m. ET/PT).

Follow HBO boxing news at hbo.com/boxing, on Facebook at facebook.com/hboboxing and on Twitter at twitter.com/hboboxing.

All HBO boxing events are presented in HDTV. HBO viewers must have access to the HBO HDTV channel to watch HBO programming in high definition.

The executive producer of WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING is Rick Bernstein; producer, Jon Crystal; director, Marc Payton.

® WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING is a registered service mark of Home Box Office, Inc.