Ward gets off canvas to beat Kovalev in thrillerBy Kelly Sanders Nov 24, 2016
Sergey Kovalev vs. Andre Ward live on Saturday, November 19 HBO pay-per-view beginning at 9:00pm ET/6:00pm PT. Indeed, it's been a long time since there was a championship fight that pitted such evenly matched fighters. It might be the Fight of Next Year, too, if popular demand sets in. Kovalev is supposed to have the edge in physical strength and punching power.
Plenty of fans and media believe Kovalev couldn't have lost a fight in which he knocked down Ward in the second round and dominated the first half of the 12-round bout. Kovalev allowed Ward to dictate the pace of the fight and the distance it was fought at after the first couple of rounds. Kovalev staggered Ward in the first round with one and Ward snapped Kovalev's head a few times.
After Floyd Mayweather retired about a year ago, many boxing journalists felt that Kovalev and Ward were somewhere within the top five boxers in the world in any division.
But nobody who saw it could be shocked. He would touch me with the jab, and then grab.
Just minutes before the big main event between Ward and Kovalev, Ward closed on the sports books as a -200 favorite at the MGM Grand, with Kovalev at +160, according to Bryan Graham of the Guardian.
Since he's Andre Ward, he made sure it stayed in Vegas. Things only went downhill from there for Ward as he was sunk to the canvas by a hard counter right hand from Kovalev in the second round.
The CompuBox stats did not provide resolution, Kovalev threw 10 more punches more than Ward, per round. After all, his defense has been his meal ticket through 31 wins now.
It was a great fight, with two really good boxers that, even if belonging to two different classes ( in term of ability)- because of the fact that Ward was not at his best - were quite evenly matched. "I haven't seen wrestling like that since Conor McGregor in NY".
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"The ref wasn't doing his job", Duva said. Duva says the only way a rematch isn't immediate is if both sides agree it won't. I have to think that Sergey won at least a couple of those rounds.
The loss is the first in the career of Sergey Kovalev, who now sits at 30-1-1 all-time. "That's why I'm going for Kovalev to win by late stoppage". "This is my most important and satisfying win". You have to wonder; how will he react to being hit by the type of power that Kovalev has? "Of course. I would do a rematch".
"I lost maybe 3 rounds, or 4 maximum". I'll give Ward great credit for getting up after that second-round knockdown; you're three points behind after two rounds but to show character and the fortitude he's got to get through that fight was unbelievable. I love both countries, which is why I have two houses, Russian Federation and America. "It's too bad when politics come into the decision". Ward previously ruled seven pounds south as super middleweight champion before ascending with the intention of making a successful assault on the 175-pound division. The result of the light-heavyweight fight has caused tempers to flare online, however.
Both fighters were unbeaten with nearly identical records. "I just kept thinking about what it would feel like to not go home with these belts tonight".
The judges' cards will be under the microscope for a while.
"America gave me opportunity", Kovalev said.
Kovalev was less than impressed by the all-American judges panel, however. Kovalev apparently has a rematch clause.
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