Andre Ward

Kovalev vs. Ward: Previewing the Pound-for-Pound Matchup


On Saturday, November 19, 2016, undefeated pound-for-pound boxing stars, Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev (30-0-1, 26 KOs) and Andre “S.O.G” Ward (30-0-0, 15 KOs), battle for boxing supremacy from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada and live on HBO Pay-Per-View.

The bout, which is presented by Main Events, Roc Nation Sports, Krusher Promotions and Andre Ward Promotions, will be broadcasted live beginning at 9:00 pm, EST/6:00 pm, PST.

The fight is scheduled for 12 rounds of championship boxing in which the unification of three Light heavyweight titles will occur. The winner will not only walk away with the IBA, IBF and WBO light heavyweight titles, but will also be seen by many as boxing’s pound-for-pound best fighter in the world.

Kovalev is a power puncher, with strong boxing skills, which allow him to set up his power shot’s masterfully and give him the ability to break down his opponent’s body as well as their will. Kovalev has that intangible, seek and destroy mindset; something boxing aficionados often describe as having “that dog in him.” 

Kovalev is coming to take his opponent out every time he steps in the ring, and has knocked out an amazing 26 of his 31 opponents, giving him an 84 percent knockout ratio.  

There is no doubt that Kovalev will be looking to knock Ward out on Saturday night, as it is what he does best. Kovalev should be looking to establish his authority and dominance in early rounds and attempt to land a highlight-reel knockout in the middle rounds.

Kovalev seemingly should look to be commanding by applying pressure on Ward and trying to cut the ring off in hopes to force Ward to engage with him. This task however will not be easy.

Andre Ward is a pure boxing technician and a highly defense-minded fighter. Ward relies heavily on timing, positioning and clinches. His punches are reactionary to what his opponent does; he is a counter-puncher who lands accurate punches after his opponents attempt their own combinations.

What Ward does well is disrupt his opponent’s timing–it is effective but it is also a waiting game; Ward is not often bringing the fight to his opponent.

Ward uniquely keeps his jab hand moving in front of his opponent at all times, impairing their vision and frustrating their game plan by disrupting their timing. He can also switch stances, often moving from his orthodox stance to a southpaw stance seamlessly, which also can frustrate the timing and game plan of an opponent.

This issue of timing is something Kovalev will need to negate in order to be effective and he will also need to find a way to make Ward engage with him.

As previously explained, Ward possess great boxing intellect, he knows the game very well and can often disturb an opponent’s game plan by frustrating them with his speed, timing and accurately.

Nonetheless, with his powerful right hand and body breakdown, Kovalev only needs one good punch to end the night in a highlight-reel type fashion at any point. This is a true 50/50 fight.

This fight is also very even with regard to height and reach as well as experience–so there are few disadvantages to examine.

Both Kovalev and Ward have their own style that they have perfected, which has allowed them to rise to the top of boxing. On Saturday night one of these fighters will reign supreme and a new pound-for-pound king will be crowned.

This fight is a true toss up and real win for boxing fans. On Saturday night live from T-Mobile Arena and live on HBO Pay-Per-View, two of boxing’s best fighters will square off and only one man can win.

Photos by David Spagnolo/Main Events

[playbuzz-item url=”//”]

To Top