The Andre Ward vs. Sergey Kovalev bout scheduled on Nov.19th is intriguing as boxing fans view it as a battle between a polished boxer and a knockout artist. And it is no surprise that although the odds on this may be a 50/50 split, many heavily favors Kovalev “Krusher” over his American counterpart for his fan-friendly style.
Andre Ward (30-0) is coming up from the middleweight division to light heavyweight, where Sergey Kovalev (30-0-1) has been a champion for years. He’s a natural boxer at this level, while Ward has only had two tests against so-so oppositions in Sullivan Barrera and Alexander Brand.
However, whatever experience at the heavier division Ward may lack is compensated for by his boxing IQ, fine skills, and impervious defense. Will Sergey Kovalev ‘s power break through Andre Ward ‘s defensive prowess?
According to a report by Fight Saga Hall of Famer coach Freddie Roach believes Sergey Kovalev will likely come out victorious.
“I think he’s the best light heavyweight in the world. I don’t think there is anyone out there that can beat him right now [at 175-pounds] – including Andre Ward.” Freddie Roach said. But…
“I think that Kovalev has to stop him to win the fight or else he will get outboxed because Ward is a great boxer.”
“A puncher and a boxer, but the puncher has proven that he can box a little bit when he fought Bernard Hopkins.”
Bernard Hopkins lost to Kovalev in 2014, but he was able to withstand his heavy offense despite being 49 years old at that time.
On the Andre Ward vs. Sergey Kovalev match up, he believes Andre Ward might beat Krusher, but he “needs to go back to his roots”, rekindling his years during the Super Six Tournament in 2009-11.
“It all depends on how Andre Ward prepares mentally and physically for this fight – and goes back to the Super Six tournament mentality – where I saw him outmuscle, I saw him outbox, I saw him smother, I saw him take away a guy’s strength and use it against him.” Bernard Hopkins said in a report from Boxing Scene.
Andre Ward didn’t seem to show some ring rust in his last two fights, in spite of his long absence from the ring due to some legal issues against his promoter that saw him sidelined for around 2 years since Nov. 2013.
He doesn’t rely on is a power much, but easily frustrates his opponents by outsmarting them, and using his craftiness. He is an excellent tactician, and Floyd Mayweather Sr. thinks that should be enough.
“I’m picking Ward. Ward can beat these guys a lot easier than he’s doing, if he would stay in the ring, he would beat these guys even easier if he could stay in the ring and take care of business. It ain’t gonna make a difference anyway because he’s gonna still whoop him. Ward can fight, Ward is good.”
Photo courtesy: Andre Ward/Facebook