Posts Tagged ‘Andre Ward’

Checkout the recap for Terence Crawford‘s (32-0, 23 KOs)  win over Julius Indongo (22-1, 11 KOs).

 

Crawford stated the 147 division is his next stop.

 

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New York, July 5, 2017Following his recent knockout of boxing legend BERNARD HOPKINS, Long Island fan favorite JOE SMITH JR. moved right into the mix in the light heavyweight division, boxing’s deepest and most exciting.Working full-time as a union laborer in the New York City area, Smith (23-1-0, 19 KO’s) will take a short break from wielding the sledgehammer as he finalizes training for his upcoming 10-round showdown with fellow highly ranked contender SULLIVAN BARRERA, (19-1-0, 14 KO’s), on Saturday, July 15 from The Fabulous Forum in Los Angeles and telecast live on HBO’s Boxing After Dark (9:50 p.m. ET/PT).Most recently a new #1 Pound-for-Pound in boxing from the light heavyweight division was heralded as ANDRE WARD defeated SERGEY KOVALEV for the second time on June 17, defending the WBA/IBF/WBO Light Heavyweight Titles. On June 3, longtime WBC Light Heavyweight Champion ADONIS STEVENSON stopped highly ranked contender ANDRZEJ FONFARA.In addition to those two champions the division is filled with world class fighters and highly regarded contenders including ARTUR BETERBIEV, DMITRY BIVOL, OLEKSANDR GVOZDYK and ELEIDER ALVAREZ .”It’s true the division is truly heating up and I’m honored to be a part of it,” said the 27-year-old Smith Jr.

 

“The winner of my upcoming fight moves right into the top of the mix in the division.”  With my last two knockouts I have the full confidence that the sky is the limit for me in this division, I want to achieve my dream of becoming a world champion.”

 

Smith Jr. is promoted by JOE DEGUARDIA’S STAR BOXING who has developed the heavy handed Long Island native over the last few years into a world ranked contender and holder of the WBC International Light Heavyweight Title.

 

“Timing is always very important when bringing along a fighter to a higher level,” said DeGuardia. “We started working together a few years ago and our plan was to continue developing Joe’s talents and present him with the right opportunities for success. This is a formula we’ve used many times in the past in building fighters the right way.”

 

“When the opportunity came to fight Andrzej Fonfara we believed as a team that Joe was ready and he was spectacular in the first round knockout victory. The same with fighting Bernard Hopkins, it was a great opportunity and Joe put on another star making performance.”

 

“With the Sullivan Barrera fight the stakes are even higher but we feel this is another great opportunity for Joe, back on HBO which has built many stars over the last forty years.”

 

Known as “The Common Man”, Irish-American Joe Smith Jr. burst onto the international boxing scene last June, knocking out the highly favored, former world title challenger Andrzej Fonfara in the first round of a nationally televised contest (NBC) from the Pole’s hometown of Chicago.

 

Six months later Smith challenged future Hall of Famer Bernard Hopkins at the Fabulous Forum and live on HBO. Dominating the legend on December 17 through the first seven rounds, the construction union laborer Smith drilled Hopkins to the canvas and out of the ring earning the knockout in the eighth round.  Sullivan Barrera is riding a two-bout knockout streak with victories over Paul Parker on April 15 and Vyacheslav Shabaranskyy on December 16, 2016.

 

His only loss was to light heavyweight champion Andre Ward by unanimous decision in March 2016, and Barrera is considered one of the top fighters in the stacked division.  Smith vs. Barrera is presented by Joe DeGuardia’s Star Boxing and Main Events. This fight is part of a sensational triple header featuring Miguel Berchelt vs. Takashi Miura, a 12-round fight for the WBC Super Featherweight World Championship and the WBA Super Featherweight World Championship with Jezreel “El Invisible” Corrales defending his title against Robinson “Robin Hood” Castellanos.  Berchelt-Miura is presented by Golden Boy Promotions in association with Zanfer Promotions and Teiken Promotions.

 

Tickets are priced at $25, $50, $75 and $125, not including applicable service charges and taxes, with a total ticket limit of 12 per person.  To charge by phone with a major credit card, call Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000 or the Forum Box Office (Monday through Friday 11:00 a.m. PST to 7:00 p.m. PST) at (310) 330-7300.  Tickets will also be available for purchase at www.fabulousforum.com or www.ticketmaster.com.

 

CONTACTS:

Bernie Bahrmasel, Star Boxing: (773) 592-2986 pr@starboxing.com

Antonio Palmieri, Star Boxing: 718-823-2000 / tonypalmieri@starboxing.com

Ellen Haley, Main Events: (973) 903-6715, ehaley@mainevents.com

Patrick Byrne, HBO: (212) 512-1361

Kevin Flaherty, HBO: (212) 512-5052

Check out my thoughts on the latest news following the debacle in Australia.

 

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Listen in for thoughts about the fight below.  Andre Ward and Guillermo Rigondeaux score dubious decisions at Mandalay Bay on Saturday night, over Sergey Kovalev and Moises Flores, respectively.

 

Hear why you shouldn’t be mad at either fighter in the video.

 

Check it out:

 

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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.” (more…)

For Immediate Release:

June 17, 2017

Contact Ellen Haley:

ehaley@mainevents.com
Main Events

Sergey Kovalev TKO’d by Low Blows 
Andre “S.O.G.” Ward vs. Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev 2: Official Results 
 
 
Ward and Kovalev Exchange Blows

Photo Credits: David Spagnolo/Main Events

 

Chapter two of Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev vs. Andre “S.O.G.” Ward drama ended in another controversial loss for Kovalev. The referee waived off Kovalev after he struggled to recover from several consecutive low blows from Ward that the official failed to call. Sergey remained on his feet throughout the exchange but nevertheless the referee called a halt to the action at 2:29 of the eighth round.

The first round began with both fighters feeling each other out. Kovalev landed several hard shots and Ward continued to hold and attempt to work the inside. Ward landed a low blow in the second and received a warning from the referee. Kovalev, however, quickly recovered with a slew of combinations. The next several rounds were so close scorecards varied widely. After several low blows that the referee failed to call against Ward the fight was stopped.

Kovalev Suffers Low Blow

Photo Credits: David Spagnolo/Main Events

A frustrated Kovalev was brief in his remarks saying only, “He hit with four low blows. The ref didn’t call them. I felt I could have continued. This is bullshit.”

Guillermo “El Chacal” Rigondeaux (18-0, 12 KOs) remains undefeated as he knocked Moises “Chucky” Flores (25-1, 17 KOs) flat on the canvas at 2:59 of round one. Many believed the blow was late but the punch was declared legal and Rigondeaux was declared the winner and retains his WBA Super World super bantamweight title.

“The Mexican was a brave kid,” said Rigondeaux. “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, who believed the punch was after the bell replied, “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.”

Dmitry Bivol and Cedric Agnew

Photo Credits: David Spagnolo/Main Events

WBA Interim Light Heavyweight Champion Dmitry Bivol from Russia remains undefeated as he made quick work of Cedric “L.O.W.” Agnew. Despite being only 26 years old Bivol demonstrated why he is quickly making a name for himself in the red-hot light heavyweight division. From the first bell, Bivol torpedoed Agnew with a nasty set of combinations in the corner and sent the veteran into a head first knockdown. Agnew quickly recovered and the round continued but so did Bivol’s come-forward attack. The next two rounds were offensive clinics for Bivol as he continued to dominate Agnew. At 1:27 of the fourth round the referee had seen enough and declared Bivol the winner by TKO.

“I’m very glad the fight went this way,” said Biovl. “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!”

Arias and Magomedov

Photo Credits: David Spagnolo/Main Events

The HBO Pay Per View telecast kicked off with an exciting middleweight on-sided contest between Russian Arif “The Predator” Magomedov (18-2, 11 KOs) and Luis “Cuba” Arias (18-0, 9 KOs). Magomedov could not handle the vicious attack from Arias and the contest was called to a halt at 1:16 of the fifth round.

Humbled by his second career loss Arif simply said, “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.”

Arias replied with, “Finally! Your just heard my name. Top 10 all around. Easy work.”

Hungary’s Zoltan Sera could not survive the first round against Junior “The Young God” Younan. The referee stopped the contest at 1:39 of round one. After the fight Younan said, “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 promoter, Roc Nation Sports, for getting me to the greatest stage in boxing!”

Vaughn Alexander Prepares Another Vicious Attack on Fabiano Pena

Photo Credits: David Spagnolo/Main Events

Middleweights Vaughn “The Animal” Alexander (10-0, 7 KOs) of St. Louis, Missouri and Fabiano Pena (16-8-1, 13 KOs) of Chiapas, Mexico were scheduled to face each other is an eight-round bout. However, the fight was stopped at the end of the fourth round due to a rib injury Alexander inflicted on Pena granting Vaughn another TKO victory.

After the contest Vaughn said, “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.”

The first bout of the free-view ended early with a second round TKO for Tramaine Williams (11-0, 4 KOs) of New Haven, Connecticut at 1:44 against Christopher Martin (30-9-3, 10 KOs) of San Diego, California.

When asked about the stoppage, Williams said, “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 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.”

The referee had to stop the third fight of the evening between John Bauza (7-0, 4 KOs) of North Bergen, New Jersey and Brando “Bam” Sanudo (5-5, 2 KOs) of San Felipe, Mexico at 1:14 of the second round. Bauza dropped Sanudo in the first round as well shortly before the bell and Sanudo was able to finish the round.

According to 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.”

Bahkram Murtazaliev Knocks Down Alex Sandro Duarte

Photo Credits: David Spagnolo/Main Events

Middleweight Bakhram Murtazaliev (9-0, 7 KOs) made quick work of Alex Sandro Duarte (6-1, 4 KOs) stopping him after at 1:33 of the first round. Murtazaliev dropped Duarte once before the stoppage and the Brazilian quickly recovered but shortly after the referee resumed the action the contest was over.

Murtazaliev had this to say after the fight, “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.”

This was the first career knockout suffered by Duarte who  took the fight on short notice after the original opponent Gerald Sherrell had to drop out last week. He added, “He was taller and stronger than me. I was fighting in a weight class that was above my normal weight class. I am disappointed.”

Steele and Gogokhia

Jonathan Steele and Eriko Gogokhia
Photo Credits: David Spagnolo/Main Events

In the first bout of the evening Georgian Enriko Gogokhia (5-0, 2 KOs) faced Dallas native Jonathan Steele (7-1, 5 KOs) in a six-round welterweight match-up. In an exciting back-and-forth battle, both fighters landed some tough shots. This exciting battle went the distance and the judges scored the bout 59-55, 59-55, 60-54 all in favor of Enriko Gogokhia who remains undefeated.

Final Presser – Kovalev abruptly Exits & Ward Responds
1ST RELEASE – Kovalev Fight Week Roundtable
1ST RELEASE – Andre Ward Fight Week Roundtable
Ward Grand Arrival
Kovalev Grand Arrival
Kovalev & Ward on Fighting Inside
Kovalev Media Day Workout
Andre Ward Media Day Workout
Andre Ward Media Day Q & A
Kovalev Media Day Q & A

Check out a couple highlights from the final press conference between Andre “S.O.G.” Ward (31-0, 15 KOs) defends the IBF World, WBO World, and WBA Super World light heavyweight titles against Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev (30-1-1, 26 KOs).

 

These guys don’t like each other.

 

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It’s fight week folks, as Andre “S.O.G.” Ward (31-0, 15 KOs) defends the IBF World, WBO World, and WBA Super World light heavyweight titles against Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev (30-1-1, 26 KOs).

 

The week began with another rematch as The Dubs, or The Golden State Warriors, reclaimed the NBA title from The Cleveland Cavaliers.

 

Listen in for thoughts about the big fight this weekend.

 

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Televised Undercard & Trainer Roundtables

Photos & Quotes Featuring

 

Guillermo Rigondeaux vs. Moises Flores

Dmitry Bivol vs. Cedric Agnew

Luis Arias vs. Arif Magomedov

Virgil Hunter & John David Jackson

 

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/Main Events

 

 

LAS VEGAS, NV (June 15, 2017) – On Wednesday, June 14, the televised undercard of Andre Ward vs. Sergey Kovalev 2: “The Rematch” sat down to participate in roundtables with the media during Fight Week Powered by Monster. Head trainers Virgil Hunter (Team Ward) and John David Jackson (Team Kovalev) followed the group of boxing talent with respective roundtables of their own. Ward-Kovalev 2: “The Rematch” will take 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.

 

Below is what the participants had to say:

 

 

Virgil Hunter, Trainer of Andre Ward

 

“[Andre’s] ring IQ speaks for itself but the worst mistake you can make is to underestimate the opponent’s IQ. We take it all the way to the top, whoever we’re fighting. The mindset is you’re the best in the world. You’re the best that ever did it. You don’t want to stop the bar on eight when you can go all the way to 10. The bar is set at 10 in giving Sergey the credit that he rightfully deserves. Look, I’ve said it before, but I’m a Sergey Kovalev fan. Just not this fight. But I’m a fan of his. I knew a long time ago that if we ever moved up to light heavyweight that we would meet. I understood that a long time ago.

 

“You can never tell what’s going on in a fighter’s mind. I tend to let Andre set the tone. If we have to change it up, then I’ll come in and we might change up a few things. But he’s been doing it so long and I trust him. I know exactly what I’m looking at when he’s fighting. He can set the tone. If the frustration becomes an asset for us, we’ll stay there and keep him frustrated.

 

“Me knowing Andre’s mindset and how he approaches things, I told him that we’ll train for a knockout. It doesn’t mean it’s going to come, but we’ll train for it. It’ll be quite evident in the fight. He’s going to get hit because you got to get hit to win and get knockouts. He’s been hit by Sergey and he described the punches just as I see the punches on TV, very sharp… not concussive but sharp. [A knockout] is a possibility. I’ve only trained Andre to purposefully knock out somebody twice – the first one was Chad [Dawson], the second one was this one. I never trained him to knock anybody out, but those two I did. Only twice have we changed strategy to stop somebody.

 

“What we want to do is make sure Sergey doesn’t get the flush punch. He might graze you, he might rush punch, he might punch you like ‘get off me’ as opposed to being planted and zeroed in and ‘boom’ give him that shot. Sergey never landed another punch after the knockdown. So, if Andre was hurt, how could he make Sergey miss? All you got to do is watch it after the knockdown.

 

“I’ll have to take Sergey at his word, but when I look at the fight, I just don’t see where he got tired. He continued to throw and he continued to press. I don’t see personally where he got tired and I think I can identify fatigue in a fighter pretty well. But I have to take him at his word.

 

“No, Andre never made any excuses about his fight. Look, it was a tough fight, a great fight. If you came to the fight and participated in the fight, you don’t have any excuses. I’m not making any excuses; I’m just saying we’re going to have a different fighter. That doesn’t guarantee victory or anything, just a different fighter.”

 

John David Jackson, Trainer of Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev

 

On the first fight against Ward:

 

“My opinion is the same now as it was that night: Sergey won the fight. If you look at the first half of the first fight Sergey dominated. If you look at the second half of the fight Ward got back in the game but Ward didn’t come back and dominate like the way everyone says he did. Especially with the knockdown, Sergey won the fight hands down but he unfortunately didn’t get the decision. For this fight, if he can fight the second half of this fight the way he fought the first half of the last fight, then of course we will win the fight. He has proved it publicly that he can outbox Ward at his own game. The question now is, can Ward come back and try to outbox Sergey at Sergey’s game? That is highly doubtful. Ward isn’t a big puncher and can he take Sergey’s body shot? We’ll see in the second fight what happens but if Sergey fights the second half of this fight the way he fought the first half of the last fight then he wins. I had the first half  5-1 or maybe 6-0 for Sergey but the second half I had it 3-3 or at best 4-2 for Ward. So, when you count in the knockdown, Sergey won the fight.”

 

On whether it’s the game plan to knock out Ward:

 

“No. Sergey needs to stick with his jabs and his combinations, put every round in the bank just like we did the first fight but in the second half he needs to sustain that attack. Don’t falter and he will win. If he goes for the knockout, he may not catch Ward. Ward is a very defensively sound-minded fighter. Sergey needs to be smart.”

 

On Sergey’s tiredness, late in the first fight:

 

“There is a different conditioning coach now so hopefully that helps him physically as well as mentally. They seem to work well together. If he did his job than Sergey will be fine. For the first fight Sergey was running 14 miles a day and I asked him why. I told him he was going to wear his legs out. He is still running but not nearly as much. He is saving himself for this time around. I told him that although he was fatigued he hid it pretty well. I couldn’t tell that he was fatigued. He got a different coach for the conditioning part and that should work for him. If it works for him physically, it will help him mentally. And that is a tremendous blow to help him win this fight. Now that he has brought a new guy in let’s see if that is what he needed to be more successful in his pursuit of Andre Ward.”

 

On prediction for the fight:

 

“I give Andre a lot of credit for being a very defensive-minded fighter. The fight might go the distance but that’s ok. We aren’t worried about that. If it goes the distance and Sergey does what he is supposed to do, he dominates; he should win hands down. Just think about this: if Sergey hadn’t slowed down and kept up the same pace he had, what would Ward have done differently? He would have gotten his ass whooped the same way because Sergey beat him in the first half of the fight the way he wanted to. Sergey slowed down and that allowed Ward to get back in the game. If he didn’t slow down, then what would Ward do? He would have still lost the second half of the fight the way he lost the first half. Sergey allowed him to get back in the game. He didn’t just do it; Sergey allowed him to get back in the game because he got tired.”

 

On the knockdown in the first fight:

 

“I wasn’t surprised he got up because Sergey didn’t hit him flush. It was kind of a grazing shot. It wasn’t full with his knuckles. If Sergey had hit him with a solid shot, Ward probably wouldn’t have gotten up. He got hit with a shot that wasn’t solid.”

 

On changes for this fight:

 

“We worked on the inside game. Both fighters held a lot and Sergey was to blame for that also. Now Ward thinks that he is going to hurt Sergey to the body and probably break him down. Well, guess what? If you watch Ward’s fights he grabs a lot. He is not a true inside fighter. He grabs a lot and he holds and hits with the free hand. As good as Sergey punches, do you think that he is going to stand there and take those kinds of punches to the body? No. Sergey’s mentality is different. He is a survivor-type fighter. He is defensively sound. Once he gets hit he is going to take off. He is not going to stand there and take those kinds of punches.”

 

Guillermo Rigondeaux (17-0, 11 KOs), WBA World Super Bantamweight Champion

 

“I can’t wait for Saturday night. The Mexican boxing community is going to be out there and every Mexican is ready for war, so we’re ready to put on a spectacular fight on Saturday. I believe my preparation has always been excellent and the Cuban school of boxing has always been something I’ve focused on. I believe, on Saturday, June 17, it will be shown. I train for one boxer at a time and when it comes, it comes. You just train hard all the time. No boxer intimidates me in any way. [Flores] is a good boxer and I’m impressed by his style, but I’m not intimidated by anyone. It’s a God-given gift to move [the way I do] in the ring and have the reflexes I have. It just kicks in. I go to work when I step into the ring.

 

“I’m 122 pounds, I’ve always been at 122 but I’ll still beat anyone at 126. Weight isn’t really much of a big issue for me. I just want the big names and the big fights. For really good quality boxing, it’s not really about size. It’s more about heart, conditioning, speed, experience, excellence – everything I’ve gone through. We live everyday based on the results and the good work we put in. All the people are intimidated to get in the ring with me.

 

“When you have two superstars like that – and two friends of mine – it’s hard to determine [who will win]. But they’re going to put on an excellent show on Saturday, June 17. Andre Ward will truly have to prove whether he’s the real champ and this is the real test.’

 

Moises Flores (25-0, 17 KOs), Interim WBA World Super Bantamweight Champion

 

“I feel great; I’m level-headed. I’m trying to take advantage of the opportunity and do what I need to do. [Rigondeaux] being favored is not really a big deal. I’ve been the underdog during my last five fights, so this is nothing new to me. I understand the game. I’m humble; I’m OK with it, I’m ready. I’m ready to fight.

 

“[My reach and height] is definitely an advantage. We’re definitely going to use that advantage – we just need to use it the right way. His age will play a part in [the fight], so we need to take advantage of it and my youth. But I’m sure he’s done his job in the ring and in the gym. But so have I. I think it will be one of the toughest fights of my career because of his boxing style. He operates from a distance, his legs are strong and he’s intelligent. He doesn’t have the same speed he once had, but he’s still fast. We just need to attack him and trap him. I think my boxing style can slow him down.

 

“These are the opportunities you train for. He’s a boxer in every sense of the word. But what can he – or any rival – do to me that life hasn’t already done to me. [Rigondeaux] is the posterchild of a real boxer and, for all that, I give him credit. People talk because they love to see action, blood, a horror movie. They want to see combat. Rigondeaux has talked a lot and we’re going to confront him in the ring. There will be action, there will be blood. I work for that.”

 

Dmitry Bivol (10-0, 8 KOs) – Interim WBA Light Heavyweight Champion

 

On changing opponents from Sullivan Barrera to Cedric Agnew, a Southpaw:

 

“Any fight with any level opponent can create problems for a fighter. This is boxing and anything can happen. I think that if I follow the plan that we have set everything is going to be good. I am definitely glad with the way things have gone now. It is my 11th fight and I am glad to be fighting on such a big event on HBO Pay-Per-View. It is a great honor. It is a great achievement for me. We have set certain goals with my manager, my trainer, my promoter and the rest of my team and so far, everything is going by the plan. I am very glad that everything is going the way it is.”

 

On the Russian light heavyweights:

 

“I have certain pressures in my career and in boxing most of those pressures come from what I have to accomplish for myself. The goals I have set are for myself. It really isn’t a competition or a comparison to other fighters from Russia or any other fighters in the division. As long as I am achieving what I have set out to do and as long as I am going beyond what I am supposed to be doing fight after fight, that is the achievement for me. That’s a win for me.”

 

On his opponent:

 

“I never really try to set the main goal of knocking somebody out. Obviously, I want to showcase a good, exciting fight. I will be looking for openings and if there are openings I will use as many of them as I can. Hopefully, I can try to finish the fight earlier but I am ready to go the full ten rounds if I have to.”

 

Cedric Agnew (29-2, 17 KOs) – Former WBO Light Heavyweight World Championship Challenger

On his opponent: (more…)