Kovalev Is “Driven” To Undisputed Title
After two losses to the now retired Andre Ward, Sergey Kovalev has taken back control of the light heavyweight division, earning TKO victories over both Vyacheslav Shabranskyy and Igor Mikhalkin.
Kovalev makes his return to Atlantic City, where he won the IBF and WBA light heavyweight titles against Bernard Hopkins in 2014, to face undefeated challenger, Eleider Alvarez on August 4th.
In regards to his return to Atlantic City, Kovalev told FIGHT SPORTS, “I’m really happy to be back in Atlantic City.”
“I don’t care where I fight, but it is great to fight in places like Atlantic City and Madison Square Garden. It’s very motivating to prove you’re the best.”
Kovalev is not taking Alvarez lightly, as the “Krusher” thinks that Alvarez is a “big test” for him.
“He’s very hungry for this fight,” said Kovalev. “He’s undefeated, and its not an easy fight for me. I must be ready for what he will bring.”
On whether he will keep his stoppage streak going, Kovalev told FIGHT SPORTS that, “I cannot say whether I can knock him out or get a victory by points.”
“Its a good fight for the fans. I never said I don’t want to fight this guy because he’s very strong. I am ready for everyone, As a champion, as a boxer, I’m ready for anybody.”
“I should prove I deserve to be champion. He is a good test for me. I saw a couple rounds in a couple of fights. I don’t spend a long time on this. I see enough to get the style he has. But he will be fighting different because right now, he is getting in shape to fight me. I have a plan, what to do in my head. I have completed my strategy, I will be ready for everything he can bring and inside the ring, after the first or second round, I will make adaptations because I’ll understand what I need to do.”
Fellow light heavyweight Dmitry Bivol, who is also fighting in Atlantic City on August 4th, is willing to test Kovalev’s statement of being “ready for anybody.” Bivol has been calling Kovalev out for a title opportunity and Kovalev is open to the challenge, and thinks “we will fight each other, maybe next year.”
Looking past Bivol, Kovalev has been formulating a plan in his head about becoming undisputed champion. Kovalev lamented that “we don’t have the opportunity to make a Super Series” like the one done at cruiserweight won by Oleksandr Usyk.
“(Usyk) motivated me. We don’t have a tournament series in this division, but in my head I have a schedule of my tournament, my championship. I am driven to in this (undisputed) championship.”
“It’s already started unofficially, between us. Because everybody wants to make unification fights I hope. Everyone who is a champion in the light heavyweight division wants to get all the belts together. We want to see who is first between us.”