Ken Porter: ‘I Don’t Think Kovalev Will Get the Decision, I See It Going Hopkins’ Way’


    ken-and-shawn-porter-post-malignaggi-fightOn the 8th of November at the Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, New Jersey, Bernard Hopkins and Sergey Kovalev will square off for pretty much all the marbles, with the WBO, IBF and WBA super light-heavyweight titles all on the line. Sean Zittel from Tha Boxing Voice recently spoke with Ken Porter, trainer and father of former welterweight world champion Shawn Porter, and got his opinion on how he saw the fight playing out.

    “The edge on the physical side is gonna be Kovalev, but the high level of intelligence that Bernard Hopkins has. I mean he’s forgotten more than Kovalev has learned at this point.”

    Herein lies the intrigue of this fight. Bernard Hopkins has been crushing the bones of big punchers to make his bread for well over a decade now, and has done so by dictating the terms of engagement and nullifying the threat presented to him. Tito Trinidad and Kelly Pavlik are the most celebrated examples of this, but whether Hopkins can reproduce that kind of performance at such an advanced stage of his career, he is nearly 50 years old after all, against a man in his prime with a near ninety percent knockout ratio, remains to be seen. Ken Porter thinks it can be done.

    “I expect him (Hopkins) to teach him some things and Kovalev is going to have to make some adjustments, but I really don’t think Kovalev is going to get the decision. I think it will go Bernard Hopkins’s way.”

    Porter was then asked if he thought going past eight rounds would be a problem for Kovalev.

    “I don’t think that’s gonna hurt him as much as Bernard being so fundamentally sound, technically sound, and just at a high level of intelligence. The guys that Kovalev has fought, he hasn’t fought anybody with that level of intelligence,”

    One would have to agree with that assessment. The most recognisable name on Kovalev’s resume is that of Nathan Cleverly, a man who was much derided as champion before Kovalev repossessed his crown in four brutal rounds last year. Apart from that, there isn’t many high level opponents he has faced. However, that isn’t to say that this won’t be the time where he steps up to elite level and gets the win over a living legend to solidify his status as a genuine word-class operator. It’s just a hell of an ask to do it against the man they call ‘The Alien’, whose body seems to ignore the timeline applied to everyone else, and whose mind has retained the wisdom gained in sixty-three professional outings.