Exclusive: Stevenson Scared of Sergey Kovalev Says His Promoter
WBO, IBF and WBA (Super) Light-Heavyweight champion Sergey Kovalev returns to action next month against Issac Chilemba. We caught up with his promoter and Main Events CEO Kathy Duva to talk all things ‘Krusher’, possible fights with Andre Ward, Adonis Stevenson, Artur Beterbiev and more.
First off, touching on the preparations of Sergey Kovalev ahead of his next fight in his home country of Russia this summer against Chilemba Kathy Duva said:
“Since Sergey is training in Russia, I have not had the chance to see him personally. But I hear that all is going quite well.”
Kathy went on to categorically confirm that if Sergey Kovalev wins his next fight and American boxing maestro Andre Ward does his, then the two will definitely meet in November:
“Plans for the Kovalev-Ward fight have been in place for November 19th since October. As long as both Sergey and Ward win their fights in July, they are scheduled to fight in November.”
When we turned attention to the much clamored for unification fight with WBC Light-Heavyweight champion Adonis Stevenson, Kathy gave us some inside information on what has been going on behind the scenes that the general boxing public might not be aware of:
“Sergey has never changed his position that he wishes to unify all the titles. So as long as Stevenson holds the WBC Light Heavyweight title, Sergey wants to fight him. However, at this point, despite all the noise he makes around the times that he is scheduled to fight others, Stevenson has never really seriously considered fighting Sergey. If Stevenson changes his mind, then we can talk about making that fight sometime next year.”
(The two men came face to face late last year – hat tip Adonis Stevenson YouTube account):
“But at that point, assuming that Sergey is successful in November, the 50-50 deal that we have offered to Stevenson during the past two years is off the table. The truth is that I have had no problem coming to terms with Stevenson’s promoter on more than one occasion. It is always Stevenson who ultimately kills the deal. I don’t really know why people think that would have been different had we gone through with the purse bid. Stevenson is simply afraid.”
Stevenson will next fight on July 29th against Thomas Williams Jr and speaking on the likelihood of when a Kovalev fight could realistically happen, Duva candidly stated:
“For this reason (fear), I suspect that it is more likely that the unification fight will happen after Stevenson loses the title and someone else holds it.”
Recently another Russian light-heavyweight big hitter Artur Beterbiev recorded his 10th win as a pro and looked impressive once again.
With the history in the amateurs between him and Kovalev, we wanted to know what Duva thought of a future fight in the pro ranks with her man – to which Kathy replied:
“We offered that fight to Beterbiev last year. He turned it down. Obviously, Sergey will have no problem with fighting him when and if the time comes.”
Kovalev (29-0-1-26KO) next fights on July 11th against Issac Chilemba with the fight taking place in Ekaterinburg, Russia.
(Image source and credit: Proboxing-fans.com)
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