Bivol Hopes To Unify, As Pascal Looks At History
On Saturday night, Dmitry Bivol and Jean Pascal battle it out in Atlantic City for Bivol’s WBA light heavyweight title.
All but one of Bivol’s three title defenses have ended before the scorecards, and the champion told FIGHT SPORTS, that he’s looking for an “exciting” finish against Pascal.
“I will do my best to perform and win in exciting fashion,” said of his showdown in Atlantic City. “He’s an experienced fighter, we will see how much he will bring to the table.”
For Jean Pascal, Saturday night brings his first world title shot since a 2016 loss to Sergey Kovalev.
“I’m very happy, I’m glad to have this opportunity. I’ve been training very hard for this fight,” claimed the former Commonwealth Games gold medalist.
This was not either fighter’s initial fight, as Bivol was on-track to face Sergey Kovalev in a light heavyweight unification fight but would be scrapped after Kovalev’s shocking knockout loss to Eleider Alvarez in August.
“In a sense, I’m disappointed, but then again this is boxing, anything can happen.” the WBA titleholder said of not getting his chance to unify. “There must be another road for me, and I’m happy things are working out the way they are.”
“I would be glad to unify, that’s my goal for next year… I’m interested in fighting anybody, I’m interested in becoming undisputed champion. It all depends upon negotiations, if the other fighters look interested, then I’m interested.”
For Pascal, he was set to fight earlier this month in Nova Scotia but would cancel due to the passing of his father, Sainvoyis Pascal. Pascal told FIGHT SPORTS that one phone call would test if he was ready to return.
“A few days later (after his father passed), I got a call to have a title shot against Dmitry Bivol, but I didn’t know what to do, it was quite the opportunity… but I wasn’t in the mood to do that.
“Talking to my family members about everything, my dad would love that I focused on what I have to do to win a world title.”
The Montreal native, who grew up wanting to wear the red, white, and blue of the Montreal Canadiens, is hoping to make history on Saturday night, as the final Canadian boxer to fight on HBO. Pascal proclaims himself a “living legend” in his native land, due to his ability to “make history.”
“My goal is not only to win fights, but to make history.”
Dmitry Bivol and Jean Pascal face off for the WBA light heavyweight title on November 24th from the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey on HBO.