In This Corner

In This Corner

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Ward Wins a Controversial Decision over Kovalev

In my last post leading up to the fight I predicted a decision for Ward. That's what the final result was, but I honestly think they got it wrong just as I did with my prediction. 

As the fight started Kovalev was in total control. He easily won the first two rounds as he dropped Ward in the second. I thought he easily won the first four rounds controlling the fight with his jab. The 5th round was a close round as Andre Ward worked better on the inside, but Kovalev still controlled the distance fairly well. The 5th round was the only round I gave Ward in the first 6. 

This is where the fight got real close and rounds became hard to call, however Kovalev had a 5-1 round advantage at this point with a knockdown in the 2nd. I'll say this...Andre Ward did not win the last six rounds of this fight. There were some close rounds 7-12, but there's now way those were all Ward rounds for a second half shut out. The harder and more effective shots had been all Kovalev through the first half, and that didn't stop in the second half. Even the rounds I scored for Ward, Kovalev was still hitting him with hard effective shots. 

The jab was effective for Kovalev, but late in the fight Ward used better angles than he had before, as he could see that Kovalev would follow him instead of cutting off the ring. Ward was able to out score him at this point. Kovalev was still able to close the distance and did so fairly well, but he really needed to cut the ring off better instead. This is where Andre Ward was able to score on him coming in, and no doubt where the judges scored all the rounds for Ward. 

I think the 114-113 Kovalev is as close as you could've had the fight. That's assuming that Ward won all the close rounds. Which I think anyone who watched the fight knows he didn't. When Kovalev wanted to close the distance and hit Ward he could do it at will. There were times he got caught coming in, but he scored himself every time and with harder more effective blows. 

Andre Ward was given credit for showing true grit and turning the fight around and making it close. He did not beat Sergey Kovalev in that fight. The American fighter got the decision on American soil in a close fight. I think anyone objectively watching this fight would agree that Sergey Kovalev won this fight. Decisions like this are not good for the sport. Andre lost that fight and should give Kovalev the immediate rematch. 

The Fighters

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Kovalev vs. Ward - The Battle of Pound-4-Pound Greats

Pound for Pound

The perception for this fight is that it's power vs. speed, but that's not necessarily true. Both Andre Ward and Sergey Kovalev are both skillful in the art of boxing. Kovalev hits extremely hard, however he works well behind the jab and sets his offense up very well. Ward moves well in the ring and counters off his great defense. Fighters hang themselves against Ward when they're too aggressive. 

Both fighters bring undefeated (30-0) records into the ring. Kovalev has more experience at the weight class, but Andre Ward is the more experienced fighter overall. They have both faced elite top level competition. It's my opinion however that they'll be facing the best fighter on their resumes when they fight each other. Going into the fight most fight fans say this could be fight of the year. 

Sergey Kovalev 

Andre Ward

My Prediction for the Fight

I could see Andre Ward dropping the first couple of rounds. He will feel Sergey Kovalev out during the first couple of rounds to see what he has. Ward will find that Kovalev can box well behind the Jab, and he'll find out that the champion hits very hard. There is a chance that Kovalev could catch Ward, but knowing Ward's skill set that wouldn't be easy or likely. However, we do all know that Ward can be caught, and Kovalev has finishing power if he does get sloppy. 

Andre Ward knows how to neutralize the power of Sergey Kovalev. He knows how to move and take the sting off the shots. Whereas he can be caught, it's probably isn't going to happen. We know that Ward is not going to stand toe-2-toe with the naturally stronger fighter. Kovalev has game changing power and Ward knows it, and he will not get careless at any point through the fight. He will stay on point and take all the necessary adjustments against the power hitting Kovalev. 

Andre Ward by Unanimous Decision.