Andre Ward Stops Sergey Kovalev in Eighth to Retain Light Heavyweight Titles

Doug Mendoza
June 19, 2017

The California-native landed a massive right hand that stunned the Russian, and followed it up with a barrage to the body that forced Kovalev to his knees and referee Tony Weeks to stop the contest. Ward hurts Kovalev with a left hand and Ward is throwing a number of combos to the body has Kovalev wobbled up.

"I saw him reacting to body shots that were borderline, so I knew I had him", Ward said.

Bivol isn't ready to call out Kovalev, WBC champion Adonis Stevenson and Ward, who has the WBA, IBF and WBO titles.

Andre ward after the second victory over Sergey Kovalev confirmed the top ranking of the best boxers in the world regardless of weight class.

“When I see his face I want to bash him, ” Kovalev said.

After the fight, Ward gave Kovalev his credit and admitted he was the most hard opponent of his career. "I give God glory for this victory".

Despite long periods of inactivity between 2012 and 2014, Ward is still regarded as one of the best pound-for-pound fighters in the sport and the numbers back it up. "I did what I had to do that's not my fault, I did my job", Ward said. "I had a couple of missions in mind when I came to Las Vegas-to glorify God with my performance and the way I act outside the ring, to defend my belts that I won back in November, and to get home and kiss my wife and kids", he said. He said later he could actually feel Kovalev weakening. "He's a great fighter", Ward said.

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He continued: "With all the excuse making and all the things he's been saying since the last fight, those are some deeper issues".

Replays of the finishing combination seemed to show that at least a couple of the punches Ward landed went below the belt as he punished Kovalev to earn the TKO.

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.

"Facing great fighters, you've got to raise your game to the next level and I'm thankful we did that tonight". He got $6.5 million to do so, and a hug in the ring afterward from Kevin Durant, one of several Golden State Warriors who came to the fight to see the fighter from Oakland who has taped inspirational messages for the team.

At the first Ward-Kovalev weigh-in, on November 18, 2016, the fighters had to be separated. "I knew I had him hurt".

"You got to look at the other side of the coin, there's a lot of people that thought I won the fight and he got what he asked for [a rematch]". Ward, meanwhile, didn't rule out a third bout with his rival, but intimated that he is thinking about moving up to cruiserweight and possibly heavyweight. Ward is still the champion. But styles make fights. This time I will not be empty - Ward will be fighting Krusher.

Earlier, super-bantamweight champion Guillermo Rigondeaux escaped a lengthy review by the Nevada Athletic Commission to post a first-round knockout of Mexico's Moises Flores. "I was winning the round, and he waited for after the bell to throw a punch when I dropped my hands down".

Other reports by GizPress

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