Sergey Kovalev powerfully defended his WBO mild heavyweight title Saturday night, starting a deep lower below fellow Russian Igor Mikhalkin’s right eye that pressured the battle to be stopped with 35 seconds left within the seventh spherical.
Kovalev received his second consecutive battle considering the fact that his back-to-back losses to Andre Ward, dealing punishment to his former amateur teammate within the first security of the title he regained in his final bout.
Kovalev (32-2-1, 28 KOs) took a few punches however simply walked through them and opened the reduce within the sixth spherical. Then in the seventh, referee Steve Willis halted the action and sent Mikhalkin to the corner after a flurry of punches to his face, and the doctor mentioned the struggle needed to be halted.
“This was higher work than the remaining combat for sure,” Kovalev stated.
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Mikhalkin (21-2) had a bloody U.S. debut, winning just one spherical on one pass judgement on’s card.
within the other gentle heavyweight name battle at Madison Sq. Lawn, WBA champion Russian Dmitry Bivol (THIRTEEN-0, 11 KOs) stopped Cuba’s Sullivan Barrera in the twelfth round.
Mikhalkin landed some blank shots as “Krusher” both wasn’t seeing the immediately lefts from the southpaw or just wasn’t respecting his energy. Mikhalkin has most effective 9 knockouts and it changed into clear he wouldn’t get some other — even though Kovalev did say he felt a few of the frame shots.
He certainly seems ready for one thing harder — regardless that he didn’t appear enthusiastic about hearing that Ward teased a possible 3rd combat.
“I don’t take into accounts that at the moment,” he said. “I simply wish to do what the enthusiasts need to see and that i love boxing.”
Most Likely it’s in every other all-Russian fit in opposition to Bivol, who used to be dominant within the biggest battle of his occupation.
“If it’s a large-money fight, i’m at all times ready for that,” Kovalev said.