Andre Ward stops Sergey Kovalev to win light heavy rematch

The best fighter

The best fighter

The California-native landed a massive right hand that stunned the Russian, and followed it up with a barrage to the body that forced Kovalev to his knees and referee Tony Weeks to stop the contest.

Sergey Kovalev has called for a third fight with Andre Ward after suffering a second controversial defeat to his American rival in Las Vegas on Saturday. "You've got to raise your game to the next level and thankfully that's what we did tonight". 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.

"Championship fights really start in the second half", Ward said. As if the talk, titles and questionable result from the last fight weren't enough to make the fight dramatic, the victor of this bout would likely get to call themselves the pound for pound best as the boxers occupy the no.1 and no. 2 spots in Ring magazine's rankings. Why stop the fight?

Barrera went on to win a rubber match in 2004 to settle one of boxing's greatest rivalries and a trilogy which did much to ensure both went down as all-time Mexican greats.

The 33-year-old Ward needed this victory to validate his first win as many felt the Russian won that fight and that Ward had been given a gift decision by the three judges.

Ward cites Roy Jones as his inspiration for believing he can look further up the weight division and put himself in the ring with the biggest athletes the sport has to offer.

Kovalev (30-2, 26 KOs), known for his formidable punching, came out charging in the opening rounds, but was left frustrated by the counter-punching of ward and frequent grabbing.

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As the sixth and seventh round got underway, Kovalev seemed to slow down just a bit, which was part of the problem he suffered in the first fight as well as his output and volume of punches landed diminished with each passing minute. He either needs to live up to his nickname and his reputation and finish Ward, or he needs to prove that he can keep up a steady pace and outbox Ward, like he did in the early part of their first fight, over the course of 12 rounds.

Agnew, who had only previously lost to Sergey Kovalev and Samuel Clarkson, went into survival mode and somehow made it through the next two sessions only for the referee to spare him more punishment midway through the fourth.

Ward, who won an Olympic gold in 2004 and hasn't lost a fight since he was 12, took a few rounds to find his mark but once he did the two engaged in close rounds that were hard to score. The Kovalev throws a low blow. In his previous fight against Ward in November 2016, Kovalev received $2 million while Ward got $5 million.

Ward wasn't interested in responding to Duva's and Kovalev's comments after the fight.

Ward stopped Kovalev in the eighth. "I don't feel like it affects me one way or another honestly".

"I think that would be a very interesting fight".

Only Kovalev had fought at Mandalay Bay before during his career.

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