The Krusher keeps crushing, and he's also pretty angry with WBC champion Adonis Stevenson.
WBO light heavyweight champion Sergey "Krusher" Kovalev ran his record to 24-0-1 with 22 knockouts after stopping Cedric Agnew (26-1) in the seventh round on Saturday night in Atlantic City.
Agnew came to fight, but like most of Kovalev's opponents, he couldn't withstand the Russian's onslaught. It seemed obvious Agnew wanted to drag the champion into the later rounds. In the end, he only made it to the seventh before a hard left jab to the body folded Agnew like a lawn chair.
Agnew's high guard prolonged the fight, and he even created a few counter opportunities for himself. Overall, he wasn't busy enough to put Kovalev in any real peril. These numbers from HBO Boxing prove that:
Final punch totals through seven rounds: Kovalev - 107 for 402 | Agnew - 31 for 109 #KovalevAgnew— HBOboxing (@HBOboxing) March 30, 2014
Thus, the champion ultimately walked him down and finished him.
Before landing the decisive blow in the seventh round, Kovalev dropped Agnew with a leaping straight left in the second round. Sports Illustrated's Chris Mannix said this after that punch sent Agnew reeling:
There's that Kovalev power. Straight left hand. This guy has crushing pop with both hands. Agnew saved by the bell.— Chris Mannix (@ChrisMannixSI) March 30, 2014
Another questionable knockdown happened in the sixth, but in the end, it didn't matter. Here are highlights of the bout, per HBO Boxing on YouTube:
After the bout, Kovalev battled through some issues with his English to say the following during his post-fight interview, per ESPN Boxing:
Kovalev: "It's a terrible fight tonight because I got the two cuts, one from his head and the left from his shoulder."— ESPN Boxing (@ESPNBoxing) March 30, 2014
Kovalev: "I'm trying boxing today because he has good defense. I found the key for his defense -- left to the body."— ESPN Boxing (@ESPNBoxing) March 30, 2014
Kovalev: "I don't want to speak about Adonis Stevenson. Adonis Stevenson is a piece of s---. Sorry for my English."— ESPN Boxing (@ESPNBoxing) March 30, 2014
A potential superfight between Kovalev and Stevenson seemed to be in the works, but the latter bolted HBO for a deal with Showtime. Because of the network differences, this development severely cripples the chances that we'll see the two knockout artists meet.
Instead, Stevenson seems to be posturing for a shot at IBF champion Bernard Hopkins—provided the ageless wonder gets by WBA champion Beibut Shumenov on April 19, and Stevenson beats Andrzej Fonfara on May 24.
If things shake out that way, Kovalev may be the champion who is left out in the cold.
Perhaps a future bout against super middleweight kingpin Andre Ward is a more realistic matchup. Kathy Duva, the head of Main Event Promotions, believes that a Kovalev-Ward clash is inevitable, per Bill Emes of BoxingScene.com.
That fight would certainly draw a crowd, but because Ward fights at 168 pounds and Kovalev is unlikely to move down, the fight would have to occur at light heavyweight.
A move up for Ward isn't out of the question, but who knows how long it will be before that happens.
In the meantime, Kovalev has earned another exciting victory. The table is set for his next fight, but what fighter will be joining him is the question.
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