Kovalev-Barrera Highlights International Clashes In CA

The rise back to the top starts at cruiserweight for Sergey Kovalev. The former Light-Heavyweight Champion will face off against Sullivan Barrera inside the Fantasy Springs Report Casino in California on April 25.

The fight joins a card featuring a plethora of international stars.

“I’m delighted to announce this epic card of international proportions,” said Oscar De La Hoya, Chairman and CEO of Golden Boy. “For this huge event, we’ll have fighters from four different continents battling it out for world titles from all four sanctioning bodies. Fans of professional boxing will be treated to a banquet of big fights headlined by Sergey Kovalev vs. Sullivan Barrera, along with the returns of world champions such as Patrick Teixeira, Rene and Felix Alvarado, and Chayaphon Moonsri. Don’t miss this festival of world champions on April 25 at Fantasy Springs Resort Casino and live on DAZN.”

After claiming the WBO Light-Heavyweight Title form Eleider Alvarez for the third time in his career, Kovalev (34-4-1) lost the title to Canelo Alvarez back in November. It was a brutal KO-loss in the 11th that did Kovalev in. Ending a two-fight win streak, the loss forced Kovalev to end up at 4-2 in his last six fights.

Now, as a cruiserweight, Kovalev will look to dominate the boxing world once again.

“I am happy to get back in the ring and to be on my way back to world championship bouts,” said Kovalev. “Barrera is a Cuban fighter and, even though I never faced any Cuban fighters as a professional, back in amateur days it was always Russian boxers competing with Cuban boxers, so I’m looking forward to remembering my amateur boxing. I’m very glad to be back and to bring my boxing to my fans on April 25.”

After a 285-27 amateur record, Sullivan Barrera (22-3) became a pro in 2009. Beating Anthony Adorno via TKO, it started a streak of five straight knockout-wins. In his eighth fight the AIBA gold medalist won the WBA Fedelatin light heavyweight title and interim WBO Latino light heavyweight title. The first loss of his career was against Andre Ward back in 2016, and since then he has gone 5-2. Barrera is currently 2-2 in his last four fights. After losing to Dmitry Bivol for the WBA Light-Heavyweight Title, he rebounded with a win over Sean Monaghan. Kovalev’s last fight was a unanimous decision loss to Jesse Hart back in June.

“This will be the most important fight of my career because I have always pursued a fight with Sergey Kovalev,” said Barrera. “I know that he has to win this fight in order to continue with his career, but the case is the same with me. It is very important to win this fight, which for me would be like becoming a world champion. That’s what it means for me to finally face Kovalev. I also want to thank Golden Boy for believing in me and my team, and for giving us the opportunity that we have always wanted, which is to fight Kovalev.”

The co-main event will be Patrick Teixeira defending the WBO Super Junior-Middleweight Championship against Brian Castano. Teixeira (31-1) won the title in his last fight against Carlos Adames in November. He is on a five-fight win streak, his lone loss coming against Curtis Stevens in May. Castano (16-0-1) won his last bout against Wale Omotoso back in November. He has not lost a fight, the only blemish of his career a split decision draw against Erislandy Lara back in March.

“I am very happy and excited to defend my world title for the very first time,” said Teixeira. “I worked very hard to become a world champion, and I won’t let anyone take that away from me. I know that Castaño, as my mandatory challenger, is tough and experienced, but my team and I are more than ready to go to war and deliver a great performance for all the fans at Fantasy Springs.”

Other fights and fighters on the card include:

  • Rene Alvarado (32-8) defending the WBA Super-Featherweight Title against Roger Gutierrez (24-3-1)
  • Chayaphon Moonsri (54-0) defending his WBC Minimumweight World Title against Marco J. Rementizo (12-3)
  • Felix Alvarado (35-2) defending his IBF Light-Flyweight World Championship against Deejay Kriel (16-1-1)
  • Alberto Machado will be taking on Cristian Baez (18-1)
  • Diego De La Hoya (22-1) facing off against Manuel Avila
  • Shane Mosley Jr. will make his Golden Boy debut against Abraham Cordero

Tickets for the event go on sale Friday, March 13. Prices range from $35 to $65 and the event will be on DAZN.

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