WBC World light-heavyweight champion Adonis Stevenson (26-1, 21 KO’s) will be inexorably linked with Sergey Kovalev (28-0-1, 25 KO’s) for as long as they both hold rule their share of the 175 lb. division.
Kovalev holds the WBA Super, WBO and IBF belts after a unanimous decision victory over Bernard Hopkins last November. He has many times repeated his desire to share the ring with Stevenson and in victory bring the famous green belt under his dominion.
Stevenson and Kovalev stand alone on the mountain top and their coming together would produce an unequivocal Alpha after a fight likely to be entertaining for as long as it lasts, given the sizeable whack each man possesses.
Each fight they take before they meet is treading water. This fight has been regularly talked about for well over a year already but despite the delay, Stevenson recently told World Boxing News that it remains in his plans after some past frustrations.
He says Kovalev’s team have had ample opportunity to make efforts towards a deal to make the fight, but have so far seem unwilling despite some grandstanding in the media.
“The thing is Kovalev was my mandatory challenger and his team never presented themselves at the purse bid. They chickened out and decided to sign with HBO instead of taking the fight with me.”
“I was really interested in that fight and I still am.”
With Stevenson signed to the Showtime network and Kovalev to HBO, there are already some tangled vines to chop through before any of the typical details like purse splits and venues. It would certainly be a protracted process, but if both the fighters’ and their representatives make a concerted efforts it is by no means an impossible feat.
In the absence of said efforts Stevenson instead contented himself by ridiculing Kovalev’s last opponent, Nadjib Mohammedi, who went in tho the fight with a record of 37-3 with 23 knockouts.
“I saw two rounds of that fight, it was a joke. This guy said his eye hurt and quit. To me, that ‘boxer’ was a pizza delivery guy and he did not belong on that level!”
Whether Mohammedi is of decidedly poorer quality than Stevenson’s next scheduled opponent Tommy Karpency (25-4-1, 14 KO’s) remains to be seen, but nothing much seems to separate them in terms of eligibility for their respective world title bids.
Bernard Hopkins is finally succumbing to age’s grip, and so Stevenson vs. Kovalev is the only really big fight left. Many would like it to have happened already and the reasons for it not belong in the playground with pointed fingers and silly noises. Let’s see where it stands in six months.