Klimas Dubious That Ward-Kovalev Could Be Made

BY Michael Woods ON July 29, 2014
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Andre-Ward

I’m getting the sense that maybe Andre Ward is bored.

His crew has been making noise recently, indicating that he’s in shape, ready to rock. Most of his fighting of late has been of the court-room/arbitration variety, as he attempts to wriggle free from his promotional deal with Dan Goossen. That wriggling inclination has made it so the 30-year-old Ward has been appearing in the ring quite infrequently, when paired with the shoulder injury which sidetracked him from a Kelly Pavlik fight early last year. He last gloved up on November 2013, easily handling Edwin Rodriguez. Who knows, maybe now he senses that his quest to switch promotional deals is keeping him off peoples’ radars to the point that he risks being almost forgotten in this what-have-ya-done-for me lately society…

Thus, perhaps that’s why his crew is pushing for Gennady Golovkin to tiptoe up to 168 and test out Ward.

I get the sense that isn’t in Team Golovkins’ plans for now or the near future. No, they’d prefer to test Miguel Cotto, or Julio Cesar Chavez Jr., or Sam Soliman, who holds a middleweight crown, or maybe Peter Quillin if the Cold War thaw gets to the point where he could fight on HBO. A Golovkin-Ward scrap isn’t tantalizing to Team Golovkin, if you listen to promoter Tom Loeffler, who on Saturday night at MSG, post-fight, said that Ward’s money ask makes a fight against Triple G a no go. Ward would want A side money, and so would Gennady…though Gennady would accept sizeable B side money against someone who is a proven draw, a Cotto or a Chavez. Ward isn’t an arena draw, and isn’t a PPV guy…so, in Loefflers’ view, it makes the slicing of the pie too difficult to let alone contemplate, let alone hash out.

Now, more than some folk think Team Golovkin also isn’t keen on possibly losing his prized “0” to such a canny pugilist, like a Ward (27-0 with 14 KOs; fought once in 2012, once in 2013, not at all in 2014), someone who maybe could prove too technically skilled for a Golovkin. His technique, combined with the edge that emerges in making Golovkin go up eight pounds…yep, I think you see why even fight fans who’d like to see if Golovkin could solve such a puzzle understand the risk-reward to a Golovkin-Ward bout doesn’t make all that much sense for the grinning assassin.

To me, I think a Ward-Sergey Kovalev fight makes more sense. For starters, what is left to do for Ward at 168? Rinse and repeat and recycle against Carl Froch? No interest there…Lure Chavez to the table so Junior could get schooled against the punch and clinch wizardry of Ward? Think Junior would go for that? And we go back to, what’s the pot for that fight, how much would HBO put up for that, and how would it be distributed? I think Ward’s work is done at 168, and light heavy should be his next move. And that means Kovalev, first and foremost, as Ward has already made clear he wasn’t overly thrilled with a matchup against Bernard Hopkins, unless the money pile was so immense he couldn’t turn it down. Wouldn’t you like to see the grinder Kovalev, always intent on separating his foe from his senses, see if he could render Ward ready for a ten count? And wouldn’t it maybe be more likely that HBO could figure out acceptable terms, if they’re doing a deal with two studs of their stable, Kovalev and Ward?

I floated the idea of a Kovalev-Ward scrap to Egis Klimas, manager to Kovalev, who gloves up Saturday in Atlantic City, against Blake Caparello. Does he think Kovalev-Ward could be made? “Andre Ward already announced his plans,” Klimas said. “Staying at 168, saying there is no reason to move up. He’s looking always for some kind of excuses, saying if I beat Kovalev, who is next for me, there is nobody in that weight class….Then he said he would go, but said Kovalev is not a pay per view fighter. It’s just excuses after excuses. You’re not going to hear excuses from my side. Whatever comes, we take it.”

Klimas recalled that for his first 18 fights, Klimas paid for all Sergey’s fights himself. He had no promotional backing. And he said if he called Kovalev, and said there is a fight planned for next Saturday, he’d hop on it. No questions asked. No queries about weight, and stance, and experience of foe. No questions asked. Just, “What weight should I be?” and “Where is the fight?” All the other guys, who is mama, who is papa, was he an amateur champion?”

Point taken; Kovalev wants to test himself, against the best...to see if he is the best. Not cherry pick, and play manager/pugilist...But take on all comers, the best and the brighest, target the Goliaths and look to fell them. Props to him...let's hope some more of that attitude gets to be contagious, and we see a spell of best fighting the best fights get made for the second half of 2014.

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Comment on this article

The Shadow says:

Nice article! Bang the drums.

I do believe what he says, especially regarding Kovalev's willingness to fight whenever, wherever, but I have a hard time taking promoters at face value when they have an agenda to push.

I don't know, it's almost like an outlet publishing Serena Williams quotes from her Proactiv commercial.

"I had pimples," Williams said in a commercial appearance. "Now they're gone!"

Haha!

Now the pie is too small for award and Golovkin. I'd like to know if they are just guessing or if they've actually sent any inquiries Goossen's way.

I'd take it with a grain of salt.

All in all, since 3K's guy is so adamant about Kovalev not giving a damn what weight, where and how he fights, why not offer a catch weight bout to Ward?

170? 171? He just fought Rodriguez at 170.

Make a public offer, make Ward duck you or step up to the plate. I don't think Kovalev loses any value after losing that fight either.

oubobcat says:

I'd love to see Kovalev-Ward. Its a great matchup of styles and between two of the top pound for pound fighters in the sport.

My gut feeling says that Kovalev and his people are absolutely willing to test themselves against anyone anywhere. Kovalev believes in his abilities and his team also believes in those abilities. They want that signature fight badly to happen whether its against Stevenson, Hopkins, Ward, etc.

I think the ball on this one is entirely in Ward's court. And personally, I don't think Ward has any immediate interest in Kovalev. Assuming he does fight again, he will come out saying that he needs somewhat of a tune up fight before stepping his game up. So at least for the rest of this year and probably first half of next year, A Kovalev fight is not happening unfortunately.

I strongly feel that if they do ever face each other regardless of the weight that Kovalev will knock Ward out. Ward has speed but Kovalev has ferocious power and underrated skills. Ward may have success early but mark my words that Kovalev would eventually get to him.

The Shadow says:

I'd love to see Kovalev-Ward. Its a great matchup of styles and between two of the top pound for pound fighters in the sport.

My gut feeling says that Kovalev and his people are absolutely willing to test themselves against anyone anywhere. Kovalev believes in his abilities and his team also believes in those abilities. They want that signature fight badly to happen whether its against Stevenson, Hopkins, Ward, etc.

I think the ball on this one is entirely in Ward's court. And personally, I don't think Ward has any immediate interest in Kovalev. Assuming he does fight again, he will come out saying that he needs somewhat of a tune up fight before stepping his game up. So at least for the rest of this year and probably first half of next year, A Kovalev fight is not happening unfortunately.

I strongly feel that if they do ever face each other regardless of the weight that Kovalev will knock Ward out. Ward has speed but Kovalev has ferocious power and underrated skills. Ward may have success early but mark my words that Kovalev would eventually get to him.


Duva don't want that work.

The Shadow says:

I'd like to take you up on that bet my brother.

I say Ward beats him, 11-1, someone thing like that. I haven't seen Ward really lose a round since Bika -- and the judge called that a shut out!

the Roast says:

Nice article! Bang the drums.

I do believe what he says, especially regarding Kovalev's willingness to fight whenever, wherever, but I have a hard time taking promoters at face value when they have an agenda to push.

I don't know, it's almost like an outlet publishing Serena Williams quotes from her Proactiv commercial.

"I had pimples," Williams said in a commercial appearance. "Now they're gone!"

Haha!

Now the pie is too small for award and Golovkin. I'd like to know if they are just guessing or if they've actually sent any inquiries Goossen's way.

I'd take it with a grain of salt.

All in all, since 3K's guy is so adamant about Kovalev not giving a damn what weight, where and how he fights, why not offer a catch weight bout to Ward?

170? 171? He just fought Rodriguez at 170.

Make a public offer, make Ward duck you or step up to the plate. I don't think Kovalev loses any value after losing that fight either.


Don't be hating on my Girl Serena, I've never even seen her on a Proactive commercial. I always see the one with Adam Levine and I always want to choke slam him while watching it. If Serena trained as a fighter she would beat 3G. I don't know if she could make 160 but if she could he would get TKOed in 5.

oubobcat says:

I'd like to take you up on that bet my brother.

I say Ward beats him, 11-1, someone thing like that. I haven't seen Ward really lose a round since Bika -- and the judge called that a shut out!


I'd love to see the fight and personally do think Duva and Kovalev would accept the challenge without any second thoughts. Duva believes Kovalev is the real deal and Kovalev himself believes in his abilities. They make the fight if presented to them, no question in my mind. I don't think Ward wants anything to do with Kovalev but I could be wrong.

Ward has won the majority of rounds he has fought since the Bika fight. But then again, there has been a lot of inactivity from him since that fight as well. I do think Froch squeaked out a couple rounds but that's been about it.

Kovalev is different than anyone Ward has ever faced. I think his gets to Ward and that power and constant pressure break Ward down. Its a very interesting fight and one that I really hope we one day see.

deepwater2 says:

I don't think Ward wants to move up but if he does there are 4 guys he can choose from. Hopkins ,Stevenson, Kovalev, Pascal. The money is there for any of those fights.

If he stays at 168 there is only Froch, who Hearn says there is no money in it. Hey how about Dirrell? He backed out of a fight with Ward already. After he beats up on Biosse why not bang the drums for a Ward fight?

gibola says:

Gotta love the double-standards in boxing. 'Come on up to 168, Gennedy, it's only 8lbs.' Followed by 'There's no way I'm going up 7lbs to fight Kovalev.' Not knocking Ward, but he's not giving up any advantages. He fought the Super6 in his home country, forced Dawson down to 168 (though to be fair he took his last fight when the guy failed to make weight). He should've been over at Wembley demanding a Froch rematch, the reason he didn't was because though he knows 50% of the Froch pot is more than he can make anywhere else, he wouldn't dream of fighting in England. As I say, Ward is giving up nothing. His career, his prime is passing him by. GGG's big fights are at 154lb or wherever Cotto/PBF/Canelo end up. Ward's big fights are Froch or a move to 175. HBO should grow some balls and realise the power it has. It should tell Kovalev and Ward to fight each other or they won't be on HBO anymore. It's win-win. So what if they walk, there's no-one else for them to fight anyway (under contract with HBO) and it's two less problems to worry about. Kovalev's last fight and his coming one are ESPN fights, not HBO quality. HBO - If you can't make'em fight each other - let 'em go.

Radam G says:

Gotta love the double-standards in boxing. 'Come on up to 168, Gennedy, it's only 8lbs.' Followed by 'There's no way I'm going up 7lbs to fight Kovalev.' Not knocking Ward, but he's not giving up any advantages. He fought the Super6 in his home country, forced Dawson down to 168 (though to be fair he took his last fight when the guy failed to make weight). He should've been over at Wembley demanding a Froch rematch, the reason he didn't was because though he knows 50% of the Froch pot is more than he can make anywhere else, he wouldn't dream of fighting in England. As I say, Ward is giving up nothing. His career, his prime is passing him by. GGG's big fights are at 154lb or wherever Cotto/PBF/Canelo end up. Ward's big fights are Froch or a move to 175. HBO should grow some balls and realise the power it has. It should tell Kovalev and Ward to fight each other or they won't be on HBO anymore. It's win-win. So what if they walk, there's no-one else for them to fight anyway (under contract with HBO) and it's two less problems to worry about. Kovalev's last fight and his coming one are ESPN fights, not HBO quality. HBO - If you can't make'em fight each other - let 'em go.


HBO does not have that type of power. That would be called bribery and solicitation, which is against the U.S. law. Boxing is an entrepreneurial sport. Contracts are required to make thing legal. And it is all right to get the edge in anything that you can.

More power to SOG Ward. He does it his way -- easy not hard. Holla!

TotoyBato says:

To make money SOG can fight the Cobra or Groves in England, the ("Old Man") Executioner Mr. Hopkins, Junior Chavez on Cinco de Mayo. SOG may be unsure about his skills to test himself against heavy hitters north of his weight class Stevenson & Kovalev or even cut a little bit more to meet GGG at a catchweight.

gibola says:

Hi there - surely HBO has the power to say if you don't want tough fights (or we simply can't make attractive fights for you) then we won't be renewing your contract and you won't be on HBO beyond whatever commitment we've made to you. That would leave both guys with interesting choices. Showtime can't broadcast every fighter so HBO does have a fair bit of clout in that they are the only other show in town. What the hell point is there in having guys under contract to HBO if they can't get them to fight on their channel?

amayseng says:

Don't be hating on my Girl Serena, I've never even seen her on a Proactive commercial. I always see the one with Adam Levine and I always want to choke slam him while watching it. If Serena trained as a fighter she would beat 3G. I don't know if she could make 160 but if she could he would get TKOed in 5.


Serena on that Juice.

amayseng says:

I have Ward beating Stevenson like a drum, Bhop would be a tough tough fight, possibly a draw, I would favor him against Kovalev if he was active but he is not, I can see Kovalev giving him fits and fits. Kovalev has great timing and distance, that spacing can keep Ward from hitting and gripping and stalling down K's offense. There are a many of great fights for Ward if he would one fight and secondly actually move up or down for the fights.

Against GGG at 168 I don't know who I would pick honestly. I wouldn't I would just enjoy it.


Ward is only hurting himself. he is now 30 and fought just a few times in a few years. Bad idea. How many times do you recall Floyd talking about fighting few and far between and how it kept him from being sharp and at his best?

Ward is losing fans and allowing his skills to diminish. Sadly because I am a huge fan of the man and the fighter.

The Shadow says:

Don't be hating on my Girl Serena, I've never even seen her on a Proactive commercial. I always see the one with Adam Levine and I always want to choke slam him while watching it. If Serena trained as a fighter she would beat 3G. I don't know if she could make 160 but if she could he would get TKOed in 5.


Oh, no doubt!

Five?? Why so late?

Paulie would edge her, though.

the Roast says:

Serena on that Juice.


I have heard those whispers in the tennis world... It would explain a lot.

The Shadow says:

I have heard those whispers in the tennis world... It would explain a lot.


Seriously? You have?

brownsugar says:

Seriously? You have?


I have heard those rumors too.

But they were not exactly rumors....
They can be more appropriately described as the blatant acusations .....born from the envy of her competitors during a period when Serena dominated the sport.

At one time it was almost the universal alibi of those defeated competitors who collectively fell like dominoes during Serena's dominating years.

I have a biograghical video which spans a decade or more that was pieced together from many years worth of home videos taken when they were being shaped and molded by their father.
Its a fascinating story.

Their father put Venus and Serena through an endless Floyd Mayweatheresque training routine.
Their father was relentless and unforgiving as he drilled his progeny with all manner of exercises and drills he invented to cover every aspect of the game. His ingenuity for creating exercises conducive to playing top level tennis was astounding.

I was mesmerized as I watched....
The producers didn't even bother to cut out the footage where Serena and her sister complain about being forced work out in the blazing sun at high noon.
I half expected the pair to run away from home.

Pops Williams makes (Motown Dad)Joe Jackson seem like a Sunday School Teacher by comparison.

All you have to do is take one look at Serena's big boned father to determine where she got those "Earl Campbell NFL" thighs from.

My kids mom was built the same way in her younger years. In high school they literally called her the hulk (whenever she got mad). When her mom gave her permission fight back (the bullies)she score some sensational one punch KO's.

No amount of "juice" can create that.

The DVD is pretty old and can be found for $5 or less but its very enlightening.

the Roast says:

I have seen that documentary Sug. It is called "Venus and Serena" I think. I may start a tennis topic in the random section to talk more about this for any tennis fans we may have out there.

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