Tag Archives: Sergey Kovalev

FNU Combat Sports Show With Special Guest Richard Barrientes, Pound For Pound Boxing Gym Coach

Tom, Tony and Rich interview an up-and-coming Vegas boxing coach who is starting to make some real waves with his amateur and pro pupils. Richard Barrientes is obviously doing a great job with his students, and we had to know what his secret was. He points to “consistency” and “fundamentals” as the foundation for a great fighter, and he also puts a lot of work in every day to put his Las Vegas Pound 4 Pound gym on the world stage in a huge way. This was a fantastic interview with a man who obviously cares deeply about the sport and wants to make a positive impact on society. His hard work paid off in giving him a group of kids who could become future world champions in their respective divisions. He is indeed, doing something right in Las Vegas, and he explains everything about his program in this interview.

Tom, Tony and Rich also discussed Mayweather vs. McGregor, Tim Hague’s recent death after a brutal defeat in boxing, Female Boxer Heather Hardy’s pro MMA debut for Bellator, and Matt Hughes’ tragic accident in the first part of the broadcast. We also chat about Tony Penecale’s Boxing 101 video with his trainees and Hank Cisco:

We wrap up the show with a recap of last week’s UFC Fight Night and all the boxing action, plus we look ahead to this weekend’s boxing matches and the stacked MMA lineups for Bellator and the UFC.

ANDRE WARD VS. SERGEY KOVALEV 2: “THE REMATCH” FIGHT NIGHT RESULTS, PHOTOS & QUOTES

 

 

 

WARD KOVALEV 2: “THE REMATCH”

SATURDAY, JUNE 17, 2017

AT MANDALAY BAY EVENTS CENTER, LAS VEGAS

PRESENTED LIVE BY HBO PAY-PER-VIEW®

 

 

Click HERE for Photos

Photo Credit: Roc Nation Sports/Tom Hogan – Hoganphotos

 

LAS VEGAS, NV (June 18, 2017) – Andre Ward vs. Sergey Kovalev 2: “The Rematch” took place on Saturday, June 17 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas. The championship event, presented by Corona Extra, was produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View®.

 

Below you can find all of the fight results and fighter quotes:

 

Sergey Kovalev (30-2-1, 26 KOs) vs. Andre Ward (32-0, 16 KOs)

RESULT: Andre Ward by TKO 2 at 2:29 of the Eighth Round

 

Andre Ward: “I’m ecstatic, I’m happy. I didn’t predict a knockout, but I said it could happen. I’ve been boxing a long time and, sometimes, a lot of writers and reporters they don’t take you at your word. If you look at my career and the way I’ve gone about things, I’m pretty matter of fact. I’m pretty straightforward. I don’t say anything unless I mean it. I have a lot of respect for Kovalev. He is a world champion. He’s been on top for a long time. He’s a great fighter; there’s not a lot of people that elite. I’m not going to throw him under the bus even though they did a lot of different things. But I knew the temperament that I was fighting. I don’t want to call him a frontrunner, but if he’s not having his way, he’s got to dig deep. I don’t know if he had the right answers tonight. Obviously, he didn’t because the fight got stopped.

 

“I was breathing, he was breathing, but I’m used to working tired. I’m comfortable being uncomfortable; that’s how we work, that’s how we train. When I saw him put his arms on the ropes in between the rounds – I watch all that stuff – that’s trouble for him. I just needed to keep being smart.

 

“I think it was plain to see that I broke him mentally and physically. I’m not a person that demands respect or none of that. You don’t have to respect me and I don’t demand anything, but at a certain point and time, you got to give a person their just do. I’m 13 years in and I’ve been doing it against the best.

 

“What’s next? Cruiserweight? Heavyweight? I dream big. Anything is possible when you have God.

 

“If there are questions marks after this, that has nothing to do with me. I’m going to enjoy my family, kiss my wife and we out.

 

Virgil Hunter: “I told them (the media) that I only trained Andre for the knockout twice. The first was Chad Dawson. And the second was for tonight. And they laughed at me. But I knew what was going to happen because he (Ward) was healthy. Now we quieted all those who were whining and thought we didn’t take it the first time.”

 

Sergey Kovalev: “He hit with four low blows. The ref didn’t call them. I felt I could have continued. This is bullshit.”

 

Moises Flores (25-1, 17 KOs) vs. Guillermo Rigondeaux (18-0, 12 KOs)

RESULT: Guillermo Rigondeaux by TKO at 2:59 of the First Round

 

Rigondeaux: “The Mexican was a brave kid. I commend him for getting in the ring with me. He has more guts than a lot of these other guys. We both threw combinations at the same time at the end of the first round. But mine was quicker and more accurate. It was only a matter of time. I fight to give the best performance to the public and all the fans. I am making everyone disappear at 122. I am always available. Tell me who is next. I want all of them, and will take them out one by one. I hope the whole world sees what it is like to get in the ring with me. I am tired of the press and everyone saying I am boring. You see what happens when someone brings the fight to me.”

 

Flores: “It’s not fair. It’s clear that the bell rang. He didn’t throw a punch the whole round. I was winning the round and he waited for after the bell to throw punch when I dropped my hands down.”

 

Cedric Agnew (29-3, 15 KOs) vs. Dmitry Bivol (11-0, 9 KO)

RESULT: Dmitry Bivol by TKO at 1:27 of the Fourth Round

 

Bivol: “I’m very glad the flight went this way. I found my ways that I practiced and I used them and you saw the results. I didn’t think he was going to work more as right-handed, as orthodox, but I was ready for everything so the fight ran smooth for me. I tried to open him up but for some reason. he didn’t want to go. He was close, he was very defensive and going back. But anyways, I won the fight!”

 

Agnew: N/A

 

Arif Magomedov (18-2, 11 KOs) vs. Luis Arias (18-0, 9 KOs)

RESULT: Luis Arias by TKO at 1:16 of the Fifth Round

 

Luis Arias: “Finally! Your just heard my name. Top 10 all around. Easy work.”

 

Arif Magomedov: “There’s really not a lot I can say about this. He caught me with a really good shot and I couldn’t do anything about it.”

 

Zoltan Sera (28-13, 19 KOs) vs. Junior Younan (12-0, 9 KOs)

RESULT: Junior Younan by TKO at 1:39 of the First Round

 

Junior Younan: “I wanted to come out and make a statement and I did just that! I knew I could get it done in one round. I did all I could. I worked my ass off! The love that I have gotten since I arrived in Las Vegas has been tremendous. Thank you! And thank you to my promotor, Roc Nation Sports, for getting me to the greatest stage in boxing!”

 

Zoltan Sera: N/A

 

Fabiano Pena (16-8-1, 13 KOs) vs. Vaughn Alexander (10-0, 7 KOs)

RESULT: Vaughn Alexander by TKO at the end of the Fourth Round

 

Vaughn Alexander: “It was a good a good fight for me, another good win. Another step to get me closer to where I want to be, amongst the top middleweights. You know soon maybe next year sometime I can be considered for a World title. I just went in there and worked on my defense, what me and my brother been working on in the gym, throwing more combinations and just taking my time.”

 

Fabiano Pena: N/A

 

Christopher Martin (30-9-3, 10 KOs) vs. Tramaine Williams (11-0, 4 KOs)

RESULT: Tramaine Williams by TKO at 1:44 of the Second Round

 

Tramaine Williams: “He was going to take a beating if they let it go for all eight rounds. He has a family he has to get back to. It’s a good thing the ref stopped the fight. If there were 10 more seconds in the first round I would have had him. It would have been over! I’m pretty happy with my performance but I am I am always going to work to be better. Thank you to everyone for tuning in. I hope to be back in the ring next month. In the meantime, I plan on staying in shape and ready to fight. Thank you to Roc Nation Sports for the opportunity to be on this great card.”

 

Christopher Martin: “Bullshit.”

 

Brando Sanudo (5-5, 2 KOs) vs. John Bauza (7-0, 4 KOs)

RESULT: John Bauza by TKO at 1:14 of the Second Round

 

John Bauza: “That knock down felt great! It was an easy win because I worked hard. I felt strong in the first round. Thanks to all my followers and supporters. I will keep up great work. Whatever my promoters tell me next, will be next.”

Brando Sanudo: N/A

Alex Sandro Duarte (6-1, 4 KOs) vs. Bakhram Murtazaliev (9-0, 7 KOs)

RESULT: Bakhram Murtazaliev by TKO at 1:31 of the First Round

 

Bakhram Murtazaliev: “I’m very happy. The fight went so quickly that I didn’t have time to even think about how I felt. I didn’t intend to knock him out, it just happened.”

 

Alex Sandro Duarte: “He was taller and stronger than me. I was fighting in a weight class that was above my normal weight class. I am disappointed.”

 

Jonathan Steele (7-1, 5 KOs) vs. Enriko Gogokhia (5-0, 2 KOs)

RESULT: Enriko Gogokhia by Unanimous Decision

 

Enriko Gogokhia: “I thought it was a good fight. I really wanted to knock him out but I also wanted to play with him and make him go a little harder. He was just the fighter I thought he would be and I was prepared for him. I am happy with my performance.”

 

Jonathan Steele: “Hopefully I will get back in there, I want revenge so hopefully I will be looking forward to a rematch. It was a great fight. I really enjoyed my first time in Vegas, it’s a beautiful thing. It was a very humbling experience. I will go harder in the gym and I’ll come back out here and continue on my path to become the world champion.”

 

 

Ward vs. Kovalev 2: “The Rematch, a 12-round mega-fight for the WBO/IBF/WBA Light Heavyweight World Championships, is presented by Roc Nation Sports, Main Events, Andre Ward Promotions, Krusher Promotions and Corona Extra, sponsored by Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, Jetlux, Life10 Electrolyte, Zappos, D’USSÉ Cognac, ProSupps and Powered by Monster. The championship event takes place Saturday, June 17 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas and will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT. Tickets for Ward-Kovalev 2: “The Rematch” are available on axs.com and at the Mandalay Bay Events Center Box Office.

FNU Combat Sports Show: Mayweather vs. McGregor set for August 26th, Ward vs. Kovalev II Preview, UFC Fight Night Hunt Vs. Lewis Recap

“Psychic” Tom Padgett earned his nickname last week in predicting Mark Hunt would be buoyed to a win over Derrick Lewis in front of his hometown New Zealand fans at the latest UFC Fight Night. We recap the fight card and preview this weekend’s UFC Fight Night card from Singapore. Tom, Tony and Rich also chat about Mayweather vs. McGregor getting signed. We additionally recap last week’s biggest boxing results and the upcoming weekend’s best fights, including a rematch of Andre Ward vs. Sergey Kovalev. Listen to the two part broadcast below.

 

 

ANDRE “S.O.G.” WARD & SERGEY “KRUSHER” KOVALEV FINAL PRESS CONFERENCE VIDEOS, PHOTOS & QUOTES

 

 

 

WARD-KOVALEV 2: “THE REMATCH”

SATURDAY, JUNE 17, 2017

AT MANDALAY BAY EVENTS CENTER, LAS VEGAS

PRESENTED LIVE BY HBO PAY-PER-VIEW®

 

 

Click HERE for Photos

Photo Credit: Roc Nation Sports/Tom Hogan – Hoganphotos

 

Click HERE for Photos

Photo Credit: Main Events/David Spagnolo

 

Click HERE for Video

Video Credit: Roc Nation Sports/Main Events

 

Ward-Kovalev 2 Final Press Conference (Click to Watch)

 

LAS VEGAS, NV (June 15, 2017) – On Thursday, June 15, Unified Light Heavyweight World Champion Andre “S.O.G.” Ward (31-0, 15 KOs) and former WBO, WBA and IBF Light Heavyweight World Champion Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev (30-1-1, 26 KOs), along with their teams, participated in the Fight Week Powered by Monster Final Press Conference for their highly-anticipated showdown. Ward-Kovalev 2: “The Rematch” will take place Saturday, June 17at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas. The championship event, presented by Corona Extra, will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT.

 

Below is what the participants on the dais had to say:

 

Andre “S.O.G.” Ward – Unified Light Heavyweight World Champion

 

“Thank you everybody, before I start I just want to send my prayers out to Daniel Franco and his family. It broke my heart when I heard, and on top of that, he is a stablemate of mine. He has fought on several of my undercards. It’s the worst situation that a fighter can find themselves in so I just want to let his family know that I’m praying for him. I would love to speak to him at some point in time and I’m dedicating this victory to him and his family because he is a brother in this sport. It’s a tough situation but we are praying and I know he’s going to pull through.

 

“I’m excited to be here. I’m the same guy that I was last time, the guy that I was five fights before, two years before. We don’t have a lot of highs and lows in this camp. You know we’ve been grinding from the beginning, we’ve got a blue collar mentality, we put our head down, we don’t take no mess. We fight to stay humble because we know where our strength comes from and if that strength is removed, we’ve got problems. It’s no different in this fight. I’m no higher than I was last time. Emotionally, I’m no lower. I didn’t train any harder. There was no major overhaul but we’re going to make adjustments. We know his side is going to make adjustments. At the end of the day, I’m not going to be distracted by the talk. I’m not going to be distracted by the ploys. I had a couple of missions in mind when I came to Las Vegas–to glorify God with my performance and the way I act outside the ring, to defend my belts that I won back in November, and to get home and kiss my wife and kids.

 

“I’m locked in on what I’ve got to. I hope everyone tunes in to HBO Pay-Per-View. And those who are reading this, if you are here, come to the fight. It’s going to be a tremendous fight. I’m expecting his best. You’re going to see a different Andre Ward. I’m just going to leave it at that. You’re going to see another guy in there Saturday night; and that is my favorite time – show and tell time. All the talking is good for the fans, it’s good to build it up, it’s all good but anybody that knows me, knows that I’m about the action. About getting it done. I’m thankful to be in this position. I’ve been in this position for over a decade and I’m blessed to be at the highest level for as long as I have.

 

“I’m excited to see some of these young fighters on the undercard. A lot of guys who I know; that I’ve watched develop. This is [their] time to shine. This is [their] moment. And my boy, Rigondeaux, I’m always happy to be on a card with him. That’s a master. Nothing but respect.”

 

Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev – Former Unified Light Heavyweight World Champion 

 

“First of all, I want to say thank you for Mandalay Bay and Richard Sturm. Also, Nevada commission, HBO Pay Per View and to my team for everything that I have right now. What do you want to hear from me? I already said enough and I will prove it June 17 in the ring. You get prepared. (Points at Ward) Thank you very much.”

 

Michael R. Yormark Roc Nation President & Chief of Branding and Strategy

 

“Back in November the two best pound-for-pound fighters in the world tested each other like they had never been tested before in their careers. On that night, Andre Ward faced a defining moment and countered with an epic comeback victory over Sergey Kovalev to become the new Unified Light Heavyweight World Champion. Over the last three months, everything that needs to be said about this fight has been said. We don’t need to build hype any longer. The table has been set for what we believe will be the fight of the year not the money grabbing spectacle that will take place later this summer. We have two fighters with different styles, who approach the sport differently and clearly handle themselves differently outside of the ring. There’s no hiding the truth that there is dislike throughout the camps. Or that Sergey has made one outlandish comment after the next. My daughter who attended the grand arrivals earlier this week asked me “Daddy, why is he pointing at you?” I reminded her that bullies always tend to pick on those a little bit smaller than them. But I told her that’s okay because I am confident that Andre will take care of business on Saturday night.

 

“From Team Ward’s perspective once the fight is over on Saturday night there will be no doubt. There will be no excuses. There will be no debated ending.Saturday, June 17 will be an opportunity for Andre Ward to solidify his status as the best pound for pound fighter in the world.

 

“On Saturday, June 17, there will only be one – one true champion, one pound for pound king, one real face of this sport. The epic rematch between Andre Ward and Sergey Kovalev will have its intended ending. With Andre Ward leaving Las Vegas and taking his belts back to the Bay Area, to join the Golden State Warriors’ second NBA Championship in the last three years.”

 

Kathy Duva – CEO of Main Events

 

“I want to talk about the fight. I would like to thank the media. I always do. Whether I say it up here or I tell you in person, without you we would not have a sport. We certainly wouldn’t have a big event this weekend. I do appreciate the fact that you spend your time, most, if not all of you, with little or no reward at all when you cover our events. But it seems strange to me that the question I have heard most often this week since I have arrived from the media is: ‘Why isn’t this a bigger event?’ This is a big event. This is the best fighting the best. Literally, number one and number two in the world fighting a rematch of a controversial fight, the most controversial fight of last year, both in their primes, just seven months away from their first encounter. They are two of the finest athletes in the world, two grandmasters in the ring testing their skills and their intellects in a fight that the media and the fans always say they want to see. This is what we have brought you. We have brought you what you want. Today you can decide when you carry our message out to the world whether you want to tell your readers, your listeners and your viewers that this is an amazing event, well worth their time and their money or if you want to spend more time talking about a lot of the manufactured drama outside of this ring. Or about that circus that is going to take place here in August. All of the elements are here: HBO, Mandalay Bay, our great cable and satellite partners, two of the great, elite fighters in our sport, in their prime, a great event where absolutely anything can happen and now it is up to you. I implore all of you, please go out and tell our story. Tell our story to our fans who, I promise you, will be kicking themselves on Sunday morning if they missed this. It is a great event.”

 

“Somebody reminded me last night, ‘When was the last time we saw Sergey Kovalev as the challenger?’ The answer to that question is when he was fighting in Wales against Nathan Cleverly. That Sergey was ‘The Krusher.’ That is the guy who got that nickname. That is the guy who I see is back here again today. I am very happy about that. I have a feeling he has had it with the talking. We have all had it with the talking, to be honest. But he is here. He is ready and he is going to get his belts back. I give to you the former light heavyweight world champ of the world and the future light heavyweight champ of the world Sergey Kovalev.”

 

“I have to also point out that, now that the gossip girls are done with talking about all of their outside the ring stuff, that stuff isn’t necessary here. I think it is kind of sad that Ward’s team doesn’t have enough faith in him that they have to go to these lengths to try to twist Sergey’s head. Sergey will be there, I promise,on Saturday and he will be angry and he will be spectacular. We are going to have fireworks. Please don’t miss it.”

 

Virgil Hunter – Trainer of Andre Ward

 

“One thing I can concur, as Kathy said, was why wasn’t there as much interest? If you go to the websites, you see them talking about fights three to four months from now and we understand. But the best fighters this year, and like [Kathy] said the No. 1 and No. 2 fighters in the world are fighting two days from now. Why is it like it is? I don’t know. I’m sure it may have something to do with Andre Ward and how he stands up for himself as a man, but we’ll leave that alone.

 

“On a sad note, I’m sad that John David Jackson took it to where it shouldn’t have gone. My grandmother taught me something a long time ago–she told me the truth has feet and a lie has wings. That’s why a lie can fly all over town and get there first. The truth moves slowly, but when it gets there, it will stand on its own. It’s very disappointing to know what I know and then it turns out to be the way it is. We’re going to leave that alone because I’m not here to mess with his livelihood. I said that from the very beginning, if you can’t help, don’t hinder.

 

“I thank everybody for coming. Looking forward to another very highly-competitive fight, a fight that means a lot to both men. When it means a lot to both men, you can’t help but have a fight. We took everything that Sergey said personally. If he wants to injure Andre, end his career, hurt him, we took that at his word and we just put our heads to the grind. I’m glad he’s [Kovalev] mad too, so hopefully, we can put a happy smile on everybody’s face after June 17.

 

“Those who gave him [Kovalev] this special pass, he just showed you what he thinks of you… to not give you the opportunity to snap a faceoff photo. It’s like a little kid playing ball on the streets, who has all of the bats and the bases, but when he strikes out he wants to take all of his stuff home. It’s really an insult that he has been built up, allowed to have all of these things to take place in his career from HBO and everybody else, but he walks out on what has always been traditional in boxing.”

 

James Prince – Manager of Andre Ward

 

“This has been a long journey for us. As you can see, we run people off. I don’t know what belts they’re talking about getting–I guess someone’s going to buy them a Gucci belt or something because he won’t be receiving these belts. Krusher has ran off, his manager has ran off, everyone has ran off. Left the scene. I don’t know if this is how they behave in Russia but we don’t act that way in the United States of America. That’s not American-like. But we understand they’re not going to show up for the post-press conference as well because it’s going to be the same story. We’re going to defeat them.

 

“Kathy, I haven’t heard your voice sound so nervous, but I understand you have it all on the line right now. That’s OK. You got it coming. But I understand also that you all want to be victims on this promotion. Kovalev and Brother Jackson accused us of lying and we don’t do that. We don’t practice that. It’s just the facts.

 

“[John David Jackson] couldn’t have said it more clearly than in the interview with Radio Rahim. What a beautiful interview, Brother Rahim. I mean, it came out of his mouth, ‘I made [them] an offer and if they would’ve accepted my offer, I may not be here.’ I’m not putting words in his mouth, that’s what the man said. I’ll let that rest.

 

“I don’t have a whole lot to say at this point – other than, there will be some beautiful undercard fighters on this show. [Saturday] is our night, this is a Roc Nation night, an Andre Ward night. We shall be victorious and shine. One more thing and deliver this message to Krusher… He ain’t no Krusher. We should rename him to Usher, get rid of the KR.”

 

Josh Dubin –Attorney and Co-Manager of Andre Ward

 

“I was having a conversation with my brother James Prince and what role we play in the lives of the fighters that we represent. We had a conversation about breaking the cycle. In this room are some old friends of mine, guys that I was blessed to be part of their lives and careers–Paulie Malignaggi, Bryant Jennings, Junior Younan “Sugarboy” and, of course, my brother Andre Ward. The guys we represent are from hard-scrabble backgrounds, they aren’t privileged guys. They literally have to fight to get what they get. To be able to just be along on the journey to help them break the cycle, whether it be of poverty, violence, the conditions they grow up in, is a source of tremendous pride for me, individually, and really why I do it.

 

“Even going back to Lennox Lewis, they let us in, and we have a very important job to play. For all the managers out there, know that behind-the-scenes we are there through the struggles, through the tears, through the injuries, through the paralyzing politics of the sport and it’s a grind sometimes. These guys deserve all the credit in the world for getting in the ring and literally risking their lives. I think that gets lost in the shuffle of trash talk and everything else. But this beautiful sport has helped so many people break the cycle. Mike Tyson said it perfectly once, ‘go from statistics to specialists.’

 

John David Jackson – Trainer of Sergey Kovalev

“It’s a pleasure to be here. It’s nice to see all the press that came out for this fight. This is a very good fight. The first time around, it was a good fight and had a very controversial ending. The second fight should be very interesting between these two combatants – these are two of the best fighters in the world today. It’s a pleasure to be a part of this event. I look forward to it.

“The past few weeks — past maybe month or so — there have been a lot of things that have been said. I call that gamesmanship and give Team Ward credit for that. They had to try to get inside people’s heads to maybe offset the training camp and the fighter’s ability to work through that and perform the best he can. I give [Team Ward] credit because there’s been a lot of lies and a lot of things have been said. What that has done for us is it’s allowed Team Kovalev to be closer. We’ve grown closer. He’s listening more and doing what he’s supposed to do for this fight. It has given us a great adhesiveness. The team is even stronger, so I want to thank them for the things that were said. There will be a lot of untruths that will be told, a little later on, at this press conference. But I have proof that all that are lies – trust me; it’s in my phone. There have been a lot of lies that have been told.

“Having said that, I think this will be a very good fight that boxing needs. Two of the best at their craft. One will come out the winner and that’s how it’s supposed to be. It’s an intriguing fight for the fans and it was made and deserves to be seen. I want everyone to come out and enjoy it and I hope it’s a tremendous fight. Hopefully, it’s a fight of the year because both of these guys are tremendous fighters. This is what boxing needs: two of the best going against one another. We are looking forward to it. Camp was great and now it is just time to go to work Saturday. I hope to see everybody there and hope we have a great fight.”

Egis Klimas – Manager of Sergey Kovalev

“I happy to be here in Vegas, not because of the nice hotels and the hot weather. I am just happy to get this thing over. It is very close. We have just two more days to go. Everything is going to be put in the place back where it belongs. We’ve been talking a lot and everybody is getting tired, especially looking at what is being done with the managers coming to the stage and saying what their fighter is going to do in the ring, who is going to get a knockout, how we are going to take care of business but at the end of the day we are sitting downstairs. We are not in the ring. The fighters are the ones who are fighting. They have to prove to each other.

“I wanted to thank everybody. I wanted to thank the press. I wanted to thank host hotel, Mandalay Bay, HBO Pay Per View, Nevada commission for having us here. Hopefully, it is going to be very good fight and we will see Saturday night. Thank you very much.”

 

Tony Walker – Vice President, HBO Pay-Per-View

 

“Let’s talk some boxing. On behalf of our Executive Vice President Peter Nelson and the rest of the HBO staff, we really appreciate the efforts of you supporting boxing and supporting this great event on Saturday. I would like to thank the press for the attention you’ve given this show and especially thank your editors for recognizing the significance of a top-flight, boxing event. Must thank the promoters; it’s never easy to put together a top-flight boxing match, an event with a main event like we have and an entertaining undercard for the fans. Thanks to Michael, Kathy and their staffs for doing such a great job.

 

“We are extremely proud to present this as a pay-per-view show because this is boxing at its highest level. These are two veteran fighters at the top of their game who have had great international acclaim and success. When you get around these fighters, you see the confidence they exude. They have a lot to fight foron Saturday night. They have put their careers on the line. I’ve also heard there’s a bit of a rivalry between these two on a personal level. It all adds up to a great night of sports television, something we think is worth boxing fans putting their money and time towards. If you find anyone who doesn’t think this is a great show, I would direct them to watch a replay of the first fight or watch the 24/7 documentary we did about this show. I must say that the first two minutes of 24/7is gripping television.

 

“Lastly, I want to thank our distributors–the cable, satellite, teleco companies–that have done a good job of telling people about this event on Saturday. We promise you, in conjunction with them, a great broadcast, very clear picture and an entertaining night of TV.”

 

Richard Sturm – President of Entertainment & Sports for MGM Resorts International

 

“Welcome to the media, fighters and our colleagues at Roc Nation, Main Events, the HBO team and fight fans worldwide. We are excited to have you join us at Mandalay Bay for today’s press conference and are thrilled to kick off the summer boxing campaign with this international championship rematch. As many of you have witnessed firsthand, over the years, Mandalay Bay Events Center has been the home to many exciting boxing events and this weekend will be no different.

 

“These two great champions–Andre Ward and Sergey Kovalev–fought a little more than six months ago at the T-Mobile Arena. As we all know, that battle was a close, thrilling fight. This second one will prove to be another sensational fight. We look forward to seeing you this Saturday night for a great event.”

 

Bob Bennett – Executive Director, Nevada State Athletic Commission

 

“I’m obviously a regulator and I’m in the middle here. That’s exactly where I’m supposed to be. I would like you to know that, on behalf the Nevada State Athletic Commission, we consider it an honor to regulate this championship fight once again. And we do so with passion, commitment and accountability. That’s what we’re all about.

 

“We’d like to thank Michael Yormark from Roc Nation and Kathy Duva from Main Events for hosting this championship fight in the fight capital of the world. Of course, we’d like to recognize Richard Sturm from MGM and the Mandalay Bay for hosting another world-class event. Last, but not least, I always try to make it a point to recognize the fighters.

 

“These two fighters are truly warriors who dare to succeed under some of the stressful conditions that they’re under. They dare to put their reputations on the line under some of those most stressful conditions and that was very evident in the first fight. As Richard said, it was a very competitive fight and we look forward to regulating this second fight. With that said, thank you very much and God bless.”

 

 

Ward vs. Kovalev 2: “The Rematch, a 12-round mega-fight for the WBO/IBF/WBA Light Heavyweight World Championships, is presented by Roc Nation Sports, Main Events, Andre Ward Promotions, Krusher Promotions and Corona Extra, sponsored by Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, Jetlux, Life10 Electrolyte, Zappos, D’USSÉ Cognac, ProSupps and Powered by Monster. The championship event takes place Saturday, June 17 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas and will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT. Tickets for Ward-Kovalev 2: “The Rematch” are available on axs.com and at the Mandalay Bay Events Center Box Office.

 

###

 

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ANDRE WARD VS. SERGEY KOVALEV 2: “THE REMATCH” MEDIA PICKS

 

 

 

SATURDAY, JUNE 17, 2017

AT MANDALAY BAY EVENTS CENTER, LAS VEGAS

PRESENTED LIVE BY HBO PAY-PER-VIEW®

 

LAS VEGAS, NV (June XX, 2017) – On the heels of the most anticipated fight of the summer, here is what some of the media are predicting for Andre Ward vs. Sergey Kovalev 2: “The Rematch” on Saturday, June 17 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas. The championship event, presented by Corona Extra, will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT.

 

Tim Dahlberg, Associated Press

I had Kovalev winning the first fight, so maybe I’m the wrong one to ask. But I think a boxer always has an easier time making adjustments than a puncher and that should favor Ward in the rematch. Ward has a good measure on Kovalev’s power and he’s really good at switching things up in the ring, as he did in the late rounds of the first fight. I think it goes the distance again, with Ward taking a unanimous decision.

 

Ward: Unanimous Decision

Bernard Fernandez, SweetScience.com

There is an expanding school of thought that Ward, the craftsman/technician, will be even better the second time around, having had 12 rounds and months of tape time to work out an even more intricate fight plan. I’m not sure I buy into that. Kovalev is no one-trick pony; he has skills to go along with superior power. If it’s a KO, he probably gets it, and it’s not out of the question that he can win on points as well. Let’s call it “Krusher” by 10th round stoppage.

 

Kovalev: 10th Round Stoppage

 

Keith Idec, BoxingScene.com

Kovalev by split decision. There isn’t much separating these elite light heavyweights. Expect another very competitive fight that includes several more very difficult rounds to score. Kovalev will win a debatable decision this time and create demand for a rubber match.

 

Kovalev: Split Decision

 

 

Michael Rosenthal, Editor Ring

Ward was successful in the second half of his first fight with Kovalev because he made necessary adjustments. I believe he’ll carry that knowledge and momentum into the rematch, which he’ll win by a unanimous decision in another competitive fight. No controversy this time.

 

Ward: Unanimous Decision

 

 

Matt Christie, Boxing News Online

Just like the first contest, this one is exceptionally hard to call and the events of that closer than close opener do little to make the job of choosing a winner any easier. Kovalev was a menace throughout, but perhaps the defining factor could be Ward’s ability to adjust. He did it in the first bout whereas Kovalev struggled to when it became clear the tide was turning. The pick is for Ward to win again on points, but without the controversy.

 

Ward: Unanimous Decision

 

Brian Campbell, CBSSports.com

Ward has already tasted Kovalev’s power and figured out ways to adjust and disarm “The Krusher.” That puts the pressure on the former champion. While you can expect Kovalev to be more aggressive, Ward just seems to have an answer for every style thrown at him.

 

Ward: Unanimous Decision

Willard Ogan, NBC Sports Bay Area

The fight will start slow with Ward working inside. Body shots will do Kovalev in.

 

Ward: 10th Round TKO

Michael Woods, NYFights.com

Ward adapted pretty quick to the Russian’s attack. We should see “Round 13” look like the second two-thirds of fight one. Unless Sergey is fresher on fight night because he’s not over trained. But he is 34, and he is what he is. Ward is the better adaptor, and a defensive master.

 

Ward: Unanimous Decision

Daiske Sugiura, Yahoo! Japan

Kovalev might be spending too much energy on hating Ward, which could backfire, and Ward is calm and collected, focused on what he needs to do. That being said, I watched the first fight twice, scored it for Kovalev both times. Quite simply, Kovalev is a better and stronger fighter at this weight class, it won’t change, and the judges will get it right this time.

 

Kovalev: Unanimous Decision

 

 

Ward vs. Kovalev 2: “The Rematch, a 12-round mega-fight for the WBO/IBF/WBA Light Heavyweight World Championships, is presented by Roc Nation Sports, Main Events, Andre Ward Promotions, Krusher Promotions and Corona Extra, sponsored by Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, Jetlux, Life10 Electrolyte, Zappos, D’USSÉ Cognac, ProSupps and Powered by Monster. The championship event takes place Saturday, June 17 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas and will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT. Tickets for Ward-Kovalev 2: “The Rematch” are available on axs.com and at the Mandalay Bay Events Center Box Office.

 

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ANDRE “S.O.G.” WARD & SERGEY “KRUSHER” KOVALEV GRAND ARRIVALS VIDEOS, PHOTOS & QUOTES

 

 

 

WARD-KOVALEV 2: “THE REMATCH” SET FOR SATURDAY, JUNE 17, 2017

AT MANDALAY BAY EVENTS CENTER, LAS VEGAS

PRESENTED LIVE BY HBO PAY-PER-VIEW®

 

 

Click HERE for Photos

Photo Credit: Roc Nation Sports/Tom Hogan – Hoganphotos

 

Click HERE for Video

Video Credit: Roc Nation Sports/Main Events

 

LAS VEGAS, NV (June 13, 2017) – Unified Light Heavyweight World Champion Andre “S.O.G.” Ward (31-0, 15 KOs) and former titleholder Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev (30-1-1, 26 KOs) opened Fight Week Powered by Monster with their Grand Arrivals at Mizuya Lounge at Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino on Tuesday, June 13, ahead of their ultimate rematch on Saturday, June 17 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas. The championship event, presented by Corona Extra, will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT.

 

Below is what the fighters had to say:

 

Andre “S.O.G.” Ward – Unified Light Heavyweight World Champion

 

“I am looking forward to making a statement in this fight and answering any questions that may be out there and removing any doubt that may be out there, so I’m excited. You got to look at the other side of the coin, there’s a lot of people that thought I won the fight and he got what he asked for. Now after this, we don’t want to hear any excuses. We don’t want to hear about anything. We’re going to shut the door on this and, like I said, take all doubt and all questions off the table.

 

“In this sport, I have very little room for error. I always have the pressure on my side – no matter if I’m the challenger or the champion. But that’s OK because me and my team, we’ve learned how to deal with the pressure. We know how to deal with it. I come here looking forward to bringing back everything that I brought, including those belts. I’m excited. I can’t wait, we’re a couple days away. All of this talking is getting ready to be over. We’re getting ready for my favorite part, which is the fight. June 17. It’s about business, so I did what I had to do the first time. I’m looking to turn it up this time.

 

“The pressure is always on, man. It comes with my territory and it’s been like this since I’ve been a baby – 16 years old, 17 years old. You get to a point where you don’t run from the pressure, you embrace it. That’s what all the greats do. All I got to do is be myself and that will be enough. Everything else will take care of itself. At the highest level, you’re going to face adversity. It’s not if, it’s when. But the question is how do you respond? We responded like we were supposed to. I’m just looking forward to giving the fans another great fight in a few days here at the Mandalay Bay Events Center on June 17.

 

“A lot of people talk about the jab and the right hand. But if you look at the second part of the fight, he [Kovalev] wasn’t landing right hands and jabs. He had a good moment and he’s a really great fighter – I’m not taking anything away from him. That’s why I want to face the best, to be the best. Some people thought I won, some people thought I lost. So let’s do it again and that’s the beauty of rematches in this sport. It’s nothing to get defensive about. You just lace it up, do it again and we’ll see what happens.

 

“I got out of that business a long time agotrying to prove people wrong – because it’s not an even playing field. I’ve shut guys out – 120-108; 120-107 on the scorecard – and I’ve literally heard grumblings about something. If it’s not this, it’s that. You get to a place where you mature as a man, you mature as an athlete, and you make the decision that ‘I’m going to live my life in the middle.’ I appreciate the praises, but I can’t get too high with those. And the criticisms – I can’t get too low with those. People are entitled to their opinions. Let me just keep doing me and that’s really the best place to be as an athlete.

 

“Tactically, I obviously want to have a better start and I’m going to have a better start. That’s really what got me in my hole – the start. I’m sure he’s made some adjustments and he’s going to come harder, but I’m ready. I’ve done everything I’m supposed to do. When you prepare the way you’re supposed to – and all the boxes are checked – it’s time to go to work. And I’m going to go to work, having fun and enjoying what I do, and put on a show in the process on June 17.”

 

Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev – Former Unified Light Heavyweight World Champion 

 

“You know it’s good that he’s believing himself right now, that he’s got the key for me, but he didn’t get the key. He won two rounds against me as empty Kovalev, I remember I was like a heavy bag. Just like a fighter who came in the boxing gym like one month ago. And he’s like right now, ‘oh yeah I beat the Kovalev, but he won with empty Kovalev’.

“For this fight, I definitely had to get in shape, have different emotions and different motivations. I don’t just want to get my belts back and thank boxing fans for the support. I want to thank my haters – they motivate me to keep going. I want to get my belts and I’m here for this.

“Yeah, my fists will say it. I’ve already said enough. I want to say to Team Ward – they’ve said a lot of trash to my side, my team. He will pay for everything; I promise you.

 

“I appreciate him giving me the opportunity to get my belts back and on June 17 it’s going to be a different fight.

“I was empty one month before the November fight. Ward fought an empty Kovalev. This time I will not be empty – Ward will be fighting Krusher. I had pushed myself so hard in the beginning of training camp that one month out I was empty. I felt so much presser for the fight – my first fight on HBO Pay-Per-View – that I just trained too hard.”

TEAM ANDRE WARD MEDIA CONFERENCE CALL RECAP

WARD-KOVALEV 2: “THE REMATCH”

SATURDAY, JUNE 17, 2017

AT MANDALAY BAY EVENTS CENTER, LAS VEGAS

PRESENTED LIVE BY HBO PAY-PER-VIEW®

LAS VEGAS, NV (June 8, 2017) – Yesterday, Unified Light Heavyweight World Champion Andre “S.O.G.” Ward (31-0, 15 KOs) participated in an international media conference call ahead of his highly-anticipated rematch against former titleholder Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev (30-1-1, 26 KOs). Ward-Kovalev 2: “The Rematch” takes place Saturday, June 17 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas. The championship event, presented by Corona Extra, will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT.

 

Here are some of the highlighted comments from Team Ward:

 

Andre “S.O.G.” Ward – Unified Light Heavyweight World Champion

 

“It’s a blessing, what the Bay Area fans have always done for me and for what they do for their athletes, whether they’re homegrown or transplants from other cities. They just appreciate the people that go out there and represent them well. And they always return the favor.

 

“I enjoyed my victory just like I would any other victory. People have to understand that anytime there’s a close decision, you’re going to have opinions either way. I’ve never refuted the fact that it was a close decision but all those out there that say that it’s some home cooking, they’ve got to remember that I’m not, you know, from Las Vegas, Nevada. You can’t just highlight that side of it. You got to highlight the people that also felt that I deserved the victory and (that it) was a tremendous comeback. It doesn’t take a close decision to get criticism. I’ve shut guys out for 12 rounds and got criticism. So you become immune to it after a certain period of time.

 

“Like I said before, [Kovalev’s] a good fighter. It’s not what it’s cracked up to be and but I give him his respect. He’s a champion and once you become a champion and have defended your belt, you’re a champion for life.

 

“I thought I won the fight by at least two rounds. But at the end of the day, there’s close rounds that you can call a swing round. I don’t know how this individual is judging the round or how they feel about it but if you look at the scorecards, I think the judges did a tremendous job because they were on one accord.

 

“I’m honored to represent my country which I’ve done since I’ve been fortunate enough to do [as] a little boy at the Junior Olympic level all the way up to the Olympics. I’ve had a lot of international competition as a professional and it’s an honor and a privilege to live here in the United States and to represent my country. And I’ve always tried to do that, no matter who I’m fighting.

 

“I think the first fight was a great fight. I think there was a lot of drama in the first fight, more drama than I wanted. I think it was a tremendous fight and I believe, round two is going to be a tremendous fight.

 

“I’ve faced a lot of adversity inside the ring. You know, some of it the public has seen. A lot of it, maybe, the public hasn’t seen in the many gyms or the many sparring sessions and everything you’ve got to do to get to a certain level in the sport. I knew what I had in me. I’ve been on the canvas before. I’ve been hurt in fights. I’ve been cut. Things have happened and, you know, my response has always been the same where if I’m physically able, I want to come get that back. I also have a tremendous coach who is my godfather. You saw him shift and go into a different gear to tell me what I needed to hear. He didn’t panic but he had a sense of urgency and he told me what I needed to hear. He just reminded me of all of the greats that had their moment. And he just reminded me that this is [my] moment. And sometimes in fights, especially in moments like this, it’s not so much technical… it’s a feeling.

 

“On the physical side, it was Virgil having the foresight early on when I was a young boy. He saw that I had a lot of ability and skills. He always told me that I don’t look at the things [I] do well, I look at where you can be beat. He said when I was 11, 12 (or) 13 years old, ‘The only style that can give you trouble right now is a buzz saw.’

 

“The jab is a lost art today. Skilled inside fighting is really a lost art and a lot of guys don’t want to be there. They want you at range. They want you in a certain place and if they can’t have you there then you see a totally different fighter.

 

“So outside of my family, I didn’t really have a lot of ex-fighters that I could pick up the phone and call. So I just try to be available, have my phone available, and make the time where I need to make the time (for some of the younger fighters). They’ll let you know what they need to talk about and what they want to talk about. If I have the answer, I’m going to definitely give them everything that I can give them. If I don’t, I’ll try to help them find it because at the end of the day, whether it’s Claressa [Shields] or Shakur [Stevenson], I’m for the fighter. I’m pro fighter. We talk about [training] stuff but it’s also more about life—being stable and making the right decisions now so that down the road, you’re happy that you did what you had to do. It’s an honor and a privilege to be someone that any of those fighters would want to pick up the phone and call. I don’t look at it like a burden. It’s an honor and a privilege.”

 

Virgil Hunter – Trainer of Andre Ward

 

“We’ve had a good camp. We’ve had a very smooth camp, the way you would like them to be. Sometimes it can’t always turn out that way but we are fortunate enough this time to have everything clicking. It’s good to see Andre in the gym after four fights and see him getting back and closer and closer to who he truly is—not just as a warrior and a battler and an individual who has a lot of dog in him but also that very skilled pugilist. I’m looking forward toJune 17 and let Andre do the talking that night with his left and his right hand.

 

“[Andre is] a professional and he’s been through this for the 24 years of his life. You have to understand when he went to the Olympics he wasn’t with me at all for three months. So he’s a professional. He knows what to do. He’s my least worry of leaving town for a week. It’s part of the sport. It’s part of the game. And when you have a professional like Andre, you know, you don’t worry about those things.

 

“Well the opponent definitely won’t see the same fighter in this fight for a number of reasons. No need to disclose but we always go in with several plans or any plan that needs to be implemented at any given time. Of course, I’m not going to ask him to do anything that I know he can’t do or hasn’t worked on or hasn’t practiced but we’re fortunate enough to be able to adjust and also adapt. I believe that what we worked on for Plan A is going to be more than enough.

 

“An amateur is when you’re at the top level and you fight at a top level. You go into national tournaments and tend to see some opponents more than once and more than twice. So in a sense, [Andre] has had rematches. As far as this rematch is concern all I can say is ‘oh boy.’ That’s all I can say.

 

“There wasn’t any fear or trepidation going into the first match. You can’t have that. Of course, you’re aware of what the opponent brings. We’re aware that you have a bigger opponent or a stronger opponent, an opponent that can punch. We’re aware of all that but we’ve been through that before. I mean when he fought in the Olympics at light heavyweight people don’t know or they never acknowledge the fact that he was only 170 pounds. So, he was giving up weight, height and size there. So, he’s used to it. He’s accustomed to it. And because of his physical strength and his stamina and his IQ he’s able to overcome all of these so-called advantages that the other fighter might have. So, once again we respect our opponent and we respect Kovalev on what he has done and what he’s capable of doing. And it’s a healthy respect but it’s not a respect that’s going to stop him from getting smashed June 17.

 

“My job is to be in that realistic moment. I know [Andre] would embrace and understand what I was saying because it’s been between he and I, things we’ve talked about over the years many, many times. Sometimes you just have to put the strategy out the window and appeal to who you know that fighter is. And I know who he is.”

 

Josh Dubin – Advisor and Attorney of Andre Ward

 

“On behalf of James Prince and myself, I just want to thank everybody for participating in the call. We are extremely grateful for the support of HBO, all of our sponsors that have stepped up and of course, Roc Nation. At the risk of making Virgil a little bit more uncomfortable, I do feel like from top to bottom we just have the best team out there and certainly, the best trainer in the world. I feel blessed to be part of such a historic event. I know that on June 17 you’re going to see magic in that ring and one of the best, if not the best ever, step into the ring to do his thing yet again.”

 

Michael R. Yormark – Roc Nation President & Chief of Branding and Strategy

 

“Obviously, Ward-Kovalev 2: “The Rematch” has the potential to be the fight of the year. As you have heard and as you’ve written these fighters don’t like each other. These fighters don’t have respect for one another and this obviously creates a lot of buzz, a lot of curiosity and a lot of anticipation for next week’s fight.

 

“As you’ve heard Andre state time and time again after this fight there will be no excuses. And without a doubt the winner of this fight will absolutely be the pound-for-pound king in the sport of boxing.”

 

 

Ward vs. Kovalev 2: “The Rematch, a 12-round mega-fight for the WBO/IBF/WBA Light Heavyweight World Championships, is presented by Roc Nation Sports, Main Events, Andre Ward Promotions, Krusher Promotions and Corona Extra, sponsored by Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, Jetlux, Life10 Electrolyte, Zappos, D’USSÉ Cognac, ProSupps and Powered by Monster. The championship event takes place Saturday, June 17 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas and will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT. Tickets for Ward-Kovalev 2: “The Rematch” are available on axs.com and at the Mandalay Bay Events Center Box Office.

 

Follow the conversation using #WardKovalev. Follow us:

 

www.andresogward.com @AndreWard @AndreSogWard /AndreSogWard
www.kovalboxer.com @KrusherKovalev @SergeyKrusherKovalev /thekrusher /kovalboxer
www.throneboxing.com @RocNation @RocNationSports /RocNation /RocNation
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GUILLERMO RIGONDEAUX & LUIS ARIAS MEDIA WORKOUT QUOTES AND PHOTOS

 

 

WARD-KOVALEV 2: “THE REMATCH” SET FOR SATURDAY, JUNE 17, 2017 AT MANDALAY BAY EVENTS CENTER, LAS VEGAS PRESENTED LIVE BY HBO PAY-PER-VIEW®

 

 

Click HERE for Photos

Photo Credit: Juan Carlos Fong

 

MIAMI, FL (May 19, 2017) – Yesterday, reigning WBA World Super Bantamweight Champion Guillermo “El Chacal” Rigondeaux (17-0, 11 KOs) and USBA Middleweight Champion Luis “Cuba” Arias (17-0, 8 KOs) participated in a media workout at the historic Tropical Park boxing gym in Miami. Both fighters are preparing for championship defenses on the HBO Pay-Per-View telecast of Andre Ward vs. Sergey Kovalev 2: “The Rematch” on Saturday, June 17 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas. Rigondeaux will face interim WBA title holderMoises “Chucky” Flores (25-0, 17 KOs), while Arias takes on rising prospect Arif “The Predator” Magomedov (18-1, 11 KOs). The championship event, presented by Corona Extra, will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT.

 

The fighters put on a showcase that included shadow boxing, heavy bag, mitt work and stretching. They were joined by Roc Nation Latin artist Victoria La Mala, who will be the national anthem performer for June 17.

 

Below is what the fighters and La Mala had to say during the media workout:

 

GUILLERMO RIGONDEAUX, WBA World Super Bantamweight Champion:

 

“Training has been going excellent in Miami, we have been preparing for a great battle with Moises Flores. I respect Chucky, he’s a great fighter and these are the types of big fights that are great for boxing. Nothing better than two undefeated fighters putting their records on the line.

 

“Flores is going to come prepared for the fight of his life and so am I. We never underestimate anyone and two undefeated warriors will be getting in the ring for an exciting fight on June 17.

 

“I have been constantly avoided by all the fighters in my division. I am the best in the world at 122 pounds and one of the top pound-for-pound fighters. I can’t wait to show the world that I am still the best. I thank Flores for having the courage to get in the ring with me unlike many top contenders that have avoided the challenge. Tune in June 17 to watch two fighters bring all that they have to the ring. It’s going to be an exciting co-main event on this year’s biggest boxing card.

 

“I’m happy for the opportunity to be part of such a big Pay-Per-View event, one of the biggest anticipated fights of the year – Ward vs. Kovalev 2. I’m very grateful to fight on such a big platform, and I want to let boxing fans know to expect nothing but an exciting fight. My opponents feel my power and run after the first round. Chucky Flores is a brave undefeated boxer that is coming with all he has, and we’re ready to show why each of us is the best come June 17.

 

“I’ve had everyone in my division run away from any mentions of me in the ring with them. My team is first focused on the Flores fight, and we’re ready to come and fight the best names in my division so that we can give the fans what they pay big Pay-Per-View money for, big exciting fights.

 

“I’m grateful to be a part of such a close community here in Miami, FL especially my boxing family at Tropical Park Boxing Gym. Miami is my home and I have all the support with me down here. I’m thankful for all the support that my fans brought during my training camp here in Miami. We have been able to bring boxing back here in Miami and make a great impact on the community, especially all the families that come to the park.”

 

LUIS ARIAS, USBA Middleweight Champion:

 

June 17, I start cementing my name and legacy in this game! I’m ready to steal the show and prove that I stand amongst the best in the division.

 

“I’ve stepped up all levels of training. I train six days a week with two hours of boxing, one hour of strength and conditioning, and run 3.5 – 5 miles on average. I’m also working with one of the top nutritionists, Chris Alergi. He helps me with what to eat and how to monitor my weight. Can’t wait to show all of my progress on June 17.

 

“My message to Magomedov is simple…I hope he comes ready. He better be doing ‘em sit-ups. I’m coming!

 

“When I step in the ring, it’s not just about getting a win anymore. It’s about winning and looking good.  I’ve built up my record. Now, I’m looking to put on an A-class performance. That’s what is going to make me stand out.

 

“My goal for the second half of 2017 is to put myself in top ‘contender’ position for what is probably the most stacked division in professional boxing. GGG, Canelo, Lemieux…bring them on!”

 

VICTORIA LA MALA:

 

“It’s an honor to be singing the national anthem at such an anticipated boxing event. Being from a Mexican family, I grew up watching boxing and am a huge fan of Julio Cesar Chavez Sr. I can’t wait to cheer on my Roc family–Andre, Rigo and Luis–on June 17.”

 

 

Ward vs. Kovalev 2: “The Rematch, a 12-round mega-fight for the WBO/IBF/WBA Light Heavyweight World Championships, is presented by Roc Nation Sports, Main Events, Andre Ward Promotions, Krusher Promotions and Corona Extra, sponsored by Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, Jetlux, Life10 Water, Zappos and Powered by Monster. The championship event takes place Saturday, June 17 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas and will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT. Tickets for Ward-Kovalev 2: “The Rematch” are available on axs.com and at the Mandalay Bay Events Center box office.

 

LUIS ARIAS VS. ARIF MAGOMEDOV USBA MIDDLEWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP ADDED TO ANDRE WARD VS. SERGEY KOVALEV PAY-PER-VIEW UNDERCARD

 

 

WARD-KOVALEV 2: “THE REMATCH” SET FOR SATURDAY, JUNE 17, 2017 AT MANDALAY BAY EVENTS CENTER, LAS VEGAS

PRESENTED LIVE BY HBO PAY-PER-VIEW®

 

NEW YORK, NY (April 27, 2017) –  USBA Middleweight Champion Luis “Cuba” Arias (17-0, 8 KOs) and prime contender Arif “The Predator” Magomedov (18-1, 11 KOs) will lead off the HBO Pay-Per-View lineup for Andre Ward vs. Sergey Kovalev 2: “The Rematch” on Saturday, June 17 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas. The championship event, presented by Corona Extra, will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT.

 

Arias will be defending his title and undefeated record against one of the division’s top prospects. Magomedov has previously held the WBO’s Inter-Continental, Youth and NABO middleweight titles with only a single career loss coming against Andrew Hernandez for the vacant WBC USNBC middleweight title. Both fighters are eager to make an impression during their Las Vegas debut.

 

“Finally my opportunity has come. The road to the big stage has been long but it’s here and I’m ready. It’s time to prove to the world that I am a threat to anyone in this division. I have been saying it for some time, my record shows it, but now I’ll get the chance to prove it,” said Arias. “I’m coming to make a statement on June 17! My opponent has been beat before and will be beat again. Thanks to Roc Nation Sports and my handlers for making this happen. A new star will be born.”

 

“My goal is to be a world champion. I have been waiting for a fight like this. Arias is a tough opponent but I will be ready for him,” said Magomedov. “I am so excited to work with my new trainer, Marco Contreras and to fight on HBO Pay-Per-View. Be ready for ‘The Predator’ on June 17.”

 

“If the heat between the Ward-Kovalev rivalry hasn’t been felt yet, then the cross promotional matchup of Roc Nation Sports’ Luis Arias and Main Events’ Arif Magomedov will certainly add fuel to the fire,” said Roc Nation President & Chief of Branding and Strategy Michael R. Yormark. “We are excited to have USBA Middleweight Champion Luis Arias make his Las Vegas debut and open the HBO Pay-Per-View telecast with a title defense on June 17 against Arif Magomedov.”

 

“Arif has been ready for this fight since the first Kovalev-Ward card in November. We are so pleased to finally give him this match-up,” said Main Events CEO Kathy Duva. “This is a huge opportunity for both Arif and Luis to test themselves on such a big stage. A win or a good showing by either fighter could catapult them in the rankings and put them on the map in this stacked middleweight division.”

 

USBA Middleweight Champion Luis “Cuba” Arias (17-0, 8 KOs), 26, takes great pride in his Cuban heritage. The Milwaukee-native chose his nickname in homage to his father’s homeland and its people, honoring them each time he steps into the ring. A former USA junior amateur standout, Arias made his professional debut on November 10, 2012 at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California, where he defeated Josh Thorpe via a four-round unanimous decision. Since joining Roc Nation Sports in February of 2015, Arias has advanced his undefeated record, paving way for his first title shot on August 20, 2016. In a homecoming at the Milwaukee Center, Arias captured the vacant USBA Middleweight title with a stoppage of Detroit’s Darryl Cunningham at the 1:11mark of the fourth round. Arias successfully defended his title on March 31, 2017 at the Carnegie Music Hall in Pittsburgh, winning a 10-round unanimous decision over Virginia’s Scott Sigmon. All three judges scored the fight 99-91 for Arias who put on a potent body punching display to settle a long-standing grudge with Sigmon.

 

Arif “The Predator” Magomedov (18-1, 11 KOs), 24, is a middleweight from Kizlyar, Russia. He made his professional debut in January of 2013 when he earned a decision win over Ruslan Sirazhev in Russia. Magomedov would go on to finish 2013 with a bang, posting a record of 8-0 with 6 KOs and none of those six opponents made it past the third round. He made his US debut in April of 2015 when he unanimously outpointed tough journeyman Derrick Findley. In May of 2015, he earned one of the biggest wins of his career when he scored a first-round knockout over the always tough and durable Darnell Boone. In July of 2015, Magomedov cruised to a unanimous decision win over previously undefeated and rising prospect Derrick Webster. In his most recent bout, Magomedov scored a second-round TKO over Chris Herrmann in Moscow, Russia. Arif is co-promoted by Main Events and Shamo Boxing and managed by Egis Klimas.

 

Ward vs. Kovalev 2: “The Rematch, a 12-round mega-fight for the WBO/IBF/WBA Light Heavyweight World Championships, is presented by Roc Nation Sports, Main Events, Andre Ward Promotions, Krusher Promotions and Corona Extra, sponsored by Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, and Powered by Monster. The championship event takes place Saturday, June 17 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas and will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT. Tickets for Ward-Kovalev 2: “The Rematch” are available on axs.com and at the Mandalay Bay Events Center box office.

GUILLERMO RIGONDEAUX VS. MOISES FLORES WBA SUPER BANTAMWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP ADDED TO ANDRE WARD VS. SERGEY KOVALEV PAY-PER-VIEW UNDERCARD

 

 

 

WARD-KOVALEV 2: “THE REMATCH” SET FOR SATURDAY, JUNE 17, 2017

AT MANDALAY BAY EVENTS CENTER, LAS VEGAS

PRESENTED LIVE BY HBO PAY-PER-VIEW®

 

NEW YORK, NY (April 19, 2017) – Reigning WBA World Super Bantamweight Champion Guillermo “El Chacal” Rigondeaux (17-0, 11 KOs) will face WBA interim titleholder Moises “Chucky” Flores (25-0, 17 KOs) in a long-awaited mandatory 12-round WBA title defense that will tarnish one fighter’s perfect record. Rigondeaux vs. Flores has officially been added to the Pay-Per-View undercard of Ward-Kovalev 2: “The Rematch” at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas on Saturday, June 17. The championship event, presented by Corona Extra, will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT.

 

“I would like to thank Roc Nation Sports, Caribe Promotions and HBO for the opportunity to fight on the biggest Pay-Per-View card of the year. It will be a night of great boxing that fans will not want to miss out on. It’s going to be a chance to show HBO what they want to see. Some say I’m not exciting but it’s not my fault that once my opponents feel my power, they start running and stop throwing punches. Regardless of that, I’m going to give them what they want. I will be standing in the middle of the ring toe-to-toe and putting on a show for the fans. This is where I’ll show the world what my fans got to see in my last fight in the UK against [James] Dickens,” said Rigondeaux. “I want to thank Moises Flores for having the courage to step in the ring with me and accepting the mandatory challenge unlike many great fighters in my division. Moises is an exciting Mexican fighter who will bring a fight. I will be ready to exhibit why I am one of the best pound-for-pound boxers and the world’s best at 122 pounds. I’m ready to give fans the best fight out there, and the best is to come the evening of June 17.”

 

“I’m very excited to have my world title fight with Guillermo Rigondeaux rescheduled for Saturday, June 17 on HBO Pay-Per-View,” said Flores. “I’d like to thank my team at Probox Management and TGB Promotions along with HBO for providing this opportunity. I never stopped my preparations from the original date and look forward to making the Mexican fans proud when I defeat the great Rigondeaux.”

 

“Roc Nation Sports is thrilled to add Guillermo Rigondeaux’s championship defense against Moises Flores to the Pay-Per-View undercard of Ward-Kovalev 2: ‘The Rematch’,” said Roc Nation President & Chief of Branding and Strategy Michael R. Yormark. “We know these two champions are ready and eager to put on a big performance on boxing’s biggest stage and undoubtedly, ahead of the most anticipated fight of the year.”

 

“TGB Promotions is proud of this world title opportunity for Moises ‘Chucky’ Flores as he takes on one of the premier fighters in the sport, Guillermo Rigondeaux,” said Tom Brown, President of TGB Promotions. “Chucky is well prepared and looking forward to making the Mexican fans proud of their new World Champion on June 17.”

 

Guillermo “El Chacal” Rigondeaux (17-0, 11 KOs), was one of the most celebrated amateur boxers in Cuba before defecting and making his professional debut on May 22, 2009 in Miami, Florida. High expectations had no ill effect on Rigondeaux as he tore through his next five opponents. On November 13, 2010, in just his seventh pro fight, Rigondeaux faced Ricardo Cordoba for the vacant interim WBA World Super Bantamweight title and left the ring with the belt after scoring a split decision victory. Rigondeaux turned his attention to supremacy in the 122-pound division and accomplished what many considered the unthinkable by knocking out WBA World Super Bantamweight Champion Rico Ramos on January 20, 2012, becoming a world champion in fewer than 10 professional bouts. On April 13, 2013 at Radio City Music Hall in New York City, Rigondeaux scored his biggest victory to date by defeatingWBO and Ring Magazine World Champion and 2012 Fighter of the Year Nonito Donaire. Rigondeaux came away with the victory by unanimous decision after out landing and out punching Donaire throughout the fight to unify titles. In November of 2015, Roc Nation Sports announced that it had signed Rigondeaux to an exclusive promotional agreement and featured him on the HBO Pay-Per-View undercard of the Miguel Cotto vs. Canelo Alvarez mega-fight at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, where he defeated veteran Drian Francisco via a 10-round unanimous decision. Prior to beating Francisco, Rigondeaux was stripped of his title belts due to inactivity, but remained the WBA champion in recess. In May of 2016, Roc Nation Sports announced that Rigondeaux was reinstated of his WBA belt ahead of a 12-round WBA World Super Bantamweight championship showdown against number 13 rated WBA super bantamweight contender Jazza Dickens on July 16 at the Cardiff Ice Arena in Wales. In his first ever appearance in the United Kingdom, Rigondeaux gave fans a thrilling knockout against Dickens. The southpaw landed a big left hook, shattering Dickens’s jaw, halting the fight in the second round with a referee’s decision. Rigondeaux will be raring to go on June 17 in his title defense against interim champion Moises Flores.

 

Moises “Chucky” Flores (25-0, 17 KOs) learned the fight game growing up in Guadalajara, Mexico, and spent the early years of his professional career building up his résumé in his home country. Now established as a title contender at 122 pounds, Flores looks to climb to the top of the division with his considerable talent. Flores is exceptionally tall for his weight class, measuring in at 5 feet 9 inches. As such, he tends to have a reach advantage over most of his opponents, although Flores isn’t one to merely fire punches from a distance and box from the outside. He likes to mix it up, and his record reflects that, with most of his opponents going down by knockout. Flores made his pro debut in August 2008 with a second round knockout of Oswaldo Salgado in Guadalajara, Mexico. He fought exclusively in Mexico over the first six years of his career and made quick work of most of his opponents. Flores made his U.S. debut in September 2014, winning a six round unanimous decision over Pablo Batres in Mesquite, Texas. He then gained a seventh round technical knockout of Mexican veteran Mario Macias in Tulsa, Oklahoma, in November 2014. That victory set up a 122-pound title shot against interim WBA World Super Bantamweight Champion Oscar Escandon in Carson, California, in April 2015. In an electrifying, all-action brawl, Flores earned a split decision to win the title. In his last two fights, Flores was able to defend the interim WBA World Super Bantamweight title against Luis Emanuel Cusolito, while also adding the IBO World Super Bantamweight title against Paulus Ambunda. Flores looks forward to claiming the full rights to the WBA World Super Bantamweight title on June 17 when he faces current champion Guillermo Rigondeaux in a 12-round championship showdown.

 

###

 

Ward-Kovalev 2: “The Rematch, a 12-round mega-fight for the WBO/IBF/WBA Light Heavyweight World Championships, is presented by Roc Nation Sports, Main Events, Andre Ward Promotions, Krusher Promotions and Corona Extra, sponsored by Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, and Powered by Monster. The championship event takes place Saturday, June 17 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas and will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT. Tickets for Ward-Kovalev 2: “The Rematch” are available on axs.com and at the Mandalay Bay Events Center box office.

 

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