Andre Ward returns to ring vs. Edwin Rodriguez

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Super middleweight champ Andre Ward dropped challenger and light heavyweight champ Chad Dawson three times before finally stopping him in the 10th round Saturday in Oakland, Calif. AP

LOS ANGELES — Andre Ward will return to the ring after a 14-month absence to fight Edwin Rodriguez on Nov. 16 in California.

Ward announced the bout with his fellow unbeaten 168-pound (76-kilogram) fighter on Friday.

Ward (26-0, 13 KOs) hasn’t fought since stopping Chad Dawson on Sept. 8, 2012. The 2004 Olympic gold medalist cancelled a bout with Kelly Pavlik in January to undergo surgery on his right shoulder.

Ward already has beaten most of the world’s top super middleweights, but the Dominican-born Rodriguez (24-0, 16 KOs) emerged as a contender with two victories this year in Monaco, including an impressive first-round stoppage of Denis Grachev in July.

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