Sport

Andre Ward vs Sergey Kovalev II

Andre Ward vs Sergey Kovalev II

All three judges scored it 114-113 after a furious rally late by Ward.

Wow, right on Max!

After some debate, and viewing several replays, Drakulich ruled the final blow was on the bell and called the fight a KO for the WBA super-bantamweight champion.

Even the one judge who had Kovalev ahead by three points entering Round 8 would have likely had Sergey ahead by a mere point heading into Round 9, assuming Ward would have been granted a 10-8 round.

He was right on both counts. But while Kovalev was supposed to be the puncher it was a big right hand by Ward that landed midway through the eighth.

He said he has been working with a Russian Olympic biathlon coach.

And Ward emphasized that he was dealing with as much remorse as Kovalev was. It's what Andre Ward had meant to do when the contract was signed for the light heavyweight title rematch with Sergey Kovalev, who many thought won their first fight last November.

"It felt like I was up (on the scorecards), but a championship fight starts after the sixth round", Ward said. I knew I had him. "He was trying to cover up his body". I'm just going to leave it at that. "He was hurt and he wasn't reacting so the referee stopped it". But the shots forced Kovalev to bend over, and he looked spent, so Weeks jumped in and waved off the fight at 2 minutes, 29 seconds.

Promoter Kathy Duva, angrily facing a "press conference" that was populated with Ward fans, said it was "inconceivable" that Kovalev could lose on "all those low blows in a row", and promised to appeal the decision to the Nevada state athletic commission. I think that would be a very interesting fight. "I knew I had him hurt".




"Why stop the fight?" he said. "I am exhausted of the press and everyone saying I am boring". He punched me with low blows. Borderline & they don't hurt, I know! It spilled over into an acrimonious buildup to the rematch, but Ward let it go after Saturday's fight.

This was an event dripping in bad blood. As if the talk, titles and questionable result from the last fight weren't enough to make the fight dramatic, the victor of this bout would likely get to call themselves the pound for pound best as the boxers occupy the no.1 and no. 2 spots in Ring magazine's rankings. The Ward-Kovalev promotion was struggling for traction anyway.

While Ward will make $6.5 million in the fight, Kovalev has agreed to fight for a percentage of the tickets and pay-per-view money instead of a purse. He promised he would have more stamina this time, but he seemed just as gassed at the same juncture, maybe because Ward was holding religiously, exchanging in the clinches, and raising the tempo to devastating effect. In the eighth, he landed a left on Kovalev's waistline that doubled him over.

The sessions were tense, hard to score and at times ugly.

The highlight has seen American landing a straight right hand.

The reality is that it didn't need one. This was never considered a highly significant fight in the big scheme of things, but the referee's painfully long discussions with ringside officials post-fight will be remembered in the coming week.

Ward did mention after the fight that he would be open to one day attempting a fight at heavyweight - referencing Roy Jones Jr in the past completing such stellar accomplishments in terms of stepping up from lower weight categories to boxing's glamor division.

"If there are questions marks after this, that has nothing to do with me", he said. "Am I number one now?"


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