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Archives for : April2017

THE RETURN OF BAM BAM BRANDON RIOS

THE RETURN OF BAM BAM BRANDON RIOS!

MEDIA WORKOUT OPEN TO THE PUBLIC

Sunday, April 23, 2017 at 1:30 pm at Ten Goose Boxing!

BAM BAM BRANDON RIOS, who is in training for his fight which will take place on Saturday, April 29 in Chihuahua, Mexico, will be hosting a Los Angeles area Media Workout Next Sunday open to the Media and Fans April 23, at Ten Goose Boxing (14420 Friar St., Van Nuys, CA 91401) The workout will begin at 1:30 pm. Interviews with the Rios and his trainer, Ricky Funez, will take place before and after workout. Team Rios will be present for fan giveaways and Team Rios merchandise will be available.

Brandon Rios, (33-3-1, 24 KOs), is coming back hungrier than ever, ready to come on top again and as always, he does it with his fans by his side. Before taking off to Mexico, Brandon Rios and trainer Ricky Funez with other special guests will welcome all the press and Boxing Fans to join them in a Fan friendly Media Workout! Spend Sunday afternoon with your family sending off Bam Bam with positive vibes for his upcoming fight! See you there Media and Boxing Fans!

For fight updates go to www.bambamrios.com, on Facebook at Bam Bam Brandon Rios, and on Twitter at twitter.com/Brandon_rios1, Instagram @brandonrios1 Use the hashtags #BrandonRios, #BamBamReturns, to join the conversation on Twitter.

Andre Ward vs. Sergey Kovalev 2: “The Rematch” Oakland Video, Photos & Quotes


Click HERE for Photos
Photo Credit: Roc Nation Sports/Khristopher Sandifer

Click HERE for Video
Video Credit: Roc Nation Sports/Main Events

Oakland, CA (April 11, 2017) – On Tuesday at the Oakland Marriott in Oakland, CA, Unified Light Heavyweight World Champion Andre “SOG” Ward (31-0, 15 KOs) and former Unified Light Heavyweight World Champion Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev (30-1-1, 26 KOs) formally addressed the media regarding their highly-anticipated rematch on Saturday, June 17 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas. The championship event, presented by Corona Extra, will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT.

Tickets for Ward-Kovalev 2: “The Rematch” go on sale to the public on Friday, April 14 at 1:00 p.m. ET/10:00 a.m. PT. Tickets priced at $1,255, $755, $505, $355, $255 and $105 not including applicable service charges will be available on axs.com and at the Mandalay Bay Events Center box office.

Below is what the fighters and dais guests had to say at the press conference:

Andre “S.O.G.” Ward – Unified Light Heavyweight World Champion

“I appreciate everybody for coming out today. It’s always good to be home in the Bay Area. It’s amazing how in a short time, eight, nine, ten years, we put the Bay on the map in terms of the boxing world. Oakland used to be a major fight town, and we got away from it. But through myself and many other young fighters, contenders who may not have had opportunities that I was afforded, we’re doing our part to continue to represent the Bay in a major way and that’s a beautiful thing.

“I’m excited about this rematch. These are the things I dreamed about as a kid. I love it. I love the back and forth, some people being with me and some people not being with me. I don’t mind the stuff they talk about on social media. That’s perception. I try and deal in the reality.

“At the end of the day, you’ve got to see me on June 17, we’ve got to fight. I don’t care what you say, I don’t care what the team says. That’s going to make headlines. That’s all good and part of the business. I understand the business very well and I’m good with that. But if you guys know me – the boxing world knows me, the Bay Area knows me – I don’t have to do a lot of talking. To my young guys coming up, you don’t have to talk a lot. Just show up when you’re supposed to show up. Lock in and do what you got to do to prepare, and when it’s time in that biggest moment when the lights come on, find a way to get it done.

“Boxing right now is not like it used to be. It’s a climate right now where there’s a lot of talking. Guys don’t do what they say they’re going to do. They don’t perform and then they find excuses on why they didn’t perform. There’s only a handful of guys in history that I know that talked and then backed it up. We don’t have a lot of that today. So, it’s okay to not be the loudest talker in the room, but when it’s time to shine, be that guy. Be the hardest worker. And another thing, I want to encourage every fighter in this room – you don’t let anybody beat you before you get in the ring. I don’t care what you say, where you’re from, what your reputation is, it’s a healthy respect you have for an opponent to prepare physically and mentally, you got to have that. But you don’t let anybody – media, broadcasters, fighters, anybody – beat you before you get in the ring. You make them earn it. And if they do it, tip your hat to them and give it credit. But you’re not beating me on reputations. This is the first time this team has met a team where that stuff isn’t working. You beat me, you’re going to earn it.

“I hope he’s the best he can be. I hope he makes the adjustments he’s supposed to make. We’re going to get ready. We’re not taking it for granted. That’s what big rematches and big fights are all about. I want the best Sergey. I want his team to be focused. I want him to be focused and I know my team is going to be focused. Let’s see what happens. The question I have for him and his team is, with all that loud talking, who are y’all trying to convince? Me or him?”

Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev – Former Unified Light Heavyweight World Champion

“The other side is saying I have to prove a lot, I have to show a lot. I don’t need to prove or show anything. I showed and proved everything on November 19. Anybody who hasn’t seen that or doesn’t think that, you’re going to see it on June 17. This is what I promise and this is what I’m going to do. The ones who think about Andre Ward’s victory, you can still pray for him because I’m going to show it on June 17. He got those belts somehow. I think June 17 is going to be the day everybody’s going to see the way it’s supposed to be.”

Michael Yormark – Roc Nation President & Chief of Branding and Strategy

“Hello Oakland! We are so happy to be here today. Today is a truly special day for this community, for this city. Oakland is synonymous with hard work, toughness, loyalty and pride. Today the native son returns. A man who represents all of those characteristics will stand before you, and unlike many in the professional sports world, Andre Ward is here to fight for Oakland! The best boxer in the world, the face of his sport, the hero and icon of this historic town – he fights for you. He did so last November, when he staged an epic comeback against dangerous Sergey Kovalev, and emerged victorious. After Andre’s win, there was a lot of talk, a lot of debate, a lot of speculation, a lot of excuses. But Oakland doesn’t make excuses, Oakland doesn’t talk, Oakland acts.

“In one of his latest posts, Sergey said Andre ‘slaps like woman’. Grammatical issues aside, on behalf of all the strong Oakland women in the audience today I’d like to say ‘thank you Sergey for the compliment’. As someone who has spent the better part of the past three decades promoting sports and entertainment events, I’ll give Sergey a lot of credit – he had some great soundbites in New York yesterday. He said ‘Andre wears a crown’. Actually Sergey, they are belts, you should know, I think a couple of them used to be yours. He said he dislikes Andre – which brings the number of people here in Oakland today that dislike Andre up to a total of two: you and Kathy. But in all seriousness, the stakes could not be higher for this rematch and when Sergey says Andre ‘will not show up for this fight,’ that tells me he hasn’t done his research. Andre has built his career on shining brightest in the biggest moments. June 17 is the biggest of moments – more than just wins and championship belts, this fight will ultimately dictate the fate of each fighter’s legacy.

“This is the type of fight that is decided by pride, guts, toughness, overcoming adversity, and who just wants it more. For Andre Ward, being raised by the city of Oakland is his ultimate advantage. He was born with incredible talent and ability, but Oakland gave him his toughness, his pride and his uncanny ability to stare down any challenge, and dominate it. June 17 will be no different – at the end of the night there will be only one champion, and there will be no excuses.”

Kathy Duva – CEO of Main Events

“If Andre Ward is half as tough in the ring as his promoter talks, I suppose Sergey may have his hands full. But we are coming to Las Vegas in June and Sergey has one goal in mind and that is to make sure that the winner actually wins the fight this time.

“Sergey Kovalev is probably the biggest perfectionist I’ve ever met. I’ve seen him walk away from fights that he knocked his opponent out in two rounds, and then apologize for his performance. Everybody keeps talking about excuses on the other side, and nobody’s making any. He is blaming himself, he has apologized to his fans for not making that win emphatic enough so that people could not take it from him because, with all the respect in the world to Andre Ward, he didn’t win Sergey’s belts they were taken from Sergey.”

James Prince – Manager of Andre Ward

“We’re excited about June 17, as we were the past year when we took care of Goliath over here. We know what we had to do with them, and now June 17 is right around the corner. I don’t know if Sergio’s manager repeated everything that Sergio was saying. It seemed to be a disconnection going on. I don’t know if he wanted to say what he was saying. I think they’re confused today as they’re going to be on June 17 in the ring when he sees he can’t accomplish the things he wants to accomplish.

“I said it to him yesterday and I’ll reiterate it today. For some reason, I get the feeling that he thinks somebody is scared of him. Bullies think that way. He feels like he can say things and impose fear in men of God’s heart. I told him men of God, we don’t fear nothing because we know no weapon formed against us shall prosper. I know Andre Ward doesn’t need any help with him, with the threats he’s making and feeling like he wants to hit Andre Ward in his head. A word to the wise, to all that’s listening – do what you got to do in the ring, because you’re in a place that’s called town business. We don’t play those kinds of games outside of the ring. Let’s stay focused and attempt to try and hit him in the head in the ring, because you’re going to have problems with that. But you’ll have real big problems outside of the ring.

“Andre Ward’s team means something to him. When we speak, our words carry value. For you to get up here and act like what we’re saying doesn’t mean anything, maybe that’s how it goes on in Russia but in the United States of America we put value in what we say. Once again, the United States of America shall be victorious on June 17, and no weapons formed against us shall prosper.”

Egis Klimas – Manager of Sergey Kovalev

“Talking is very, very cheap. Trust me, I’ve been in this business for a while, and I’ve seen it many times. Managers, trainers, promoters coming in and talking a lot of shit into the microphone. But then it comes to the night, these are the two men that are going to go in the ring, and they’re going to fight. Nothing to do with the promotion, nothing to do with the manager, nothing to do with the trainers. Trainers might be giving them the advice, but these two guys are going to survive.

“You can’t lie to the people’s eyes with what they saw on November 19. I’m not going to talk about it. I’m not going to go there because it’s already history. Forget about it. I want everybody to see who’s going to be coming to Vegas on June 17, what is going to happen. I want to thank everybody who’s involved in this fight and putting it together, HBO Pay-Per-View. I want to thank as always the media because without you guys nobody will know what happened here.”

Virgil Hunter – Trainer of Andre Ward

“It’s a good fight coming June 17 against the most dangerous and most feared light heavyweight in the world, Sergey Kovalev against a lucky victorious man in Andre Ward. So, I guess this fight here will pretty much settle it. I think if you look at the realistic facts of it all, I think only Sergey’s been in the media talking. I think Mr. Klimas should understand that we haven’t said a word. The other side has talked about ending people’s careers to knocking you out to insulting God almighty. All that’s coming from this side so we understand what goes on and I think it’s a lot of doubt, it’s a lot of anger. I don’t see Coach Jackson here today and to be honest I don’t expect to see him June 17 because you got to put the blame somewhere.

“I’m looking for a real good fight. Sergey Kovalev is definitely not underestimated. I don’t have a problem saying that before we fought I was a fan of his. I’m still a fan of his. I just won’t be a fan of his on June 17. This is not me blowing smoke. I admire his skill. I always knew that if we came across each other that it was going to be a tough fight, difficult fight, and a fight of attrition. And I expect the same thing June 17.

“I think Andre said it best when he said somebody’s will was going to be broke in that fight. But it would be nice to go into that without biting the hand that fed you. Everybody’s an expert from the reporters to the announcers when it comes to judging a fight. All of a sudden, they were all wrong that night. So, I think that’s an insult to what goes on in boxing. I think it wasn’t right. I think it was wrong particularly since HBO has built Sergey into the star that he rightfully is. Like I said before and I’ll say today, I’ll challenge anybody to sit with me and show me where he won the fight. He fought a hell of a fight because he’s a hell of a fighter, but he didn’t win the fight.

“So, I guess all of the answers will be answered June 17. My advice is relax, don’t be uptight. You can’t drink year in and year out and expect at some point for it not to catch up to you and I would bet money that if we could go internally and see inside that that’s one of the causes that’s causing him to get fatigued now. It’s not the overtraining, it’s not this and it’s not that. It’s just guys are standing up and going 12 rounds now. But you can’t drink vodka year in and year out and expect on fight night to fight somebody like Andre.”

Tony Walker – Vice President, HBO Pay-Per-View

“On behalf of my Executive Vice President Peter Nelson and the rest of the staff at HBO I’d like to thank everybody for coming out to talk some big-time boxing today. First, I want to thank Michael and Kathy and their staff at Roc Nation and Main Events. It’s not easy putting big time fights together no matter how much everybody wants it – and the fighters wanted it. The promoters worked and we have here June 17 one of the biggest sporting events of the year.

“I would also like to thank, as Michael did, the community of Oakland. This has always been a boxing city. We have great viewership numbers from Oakland and the entire Bay Area no matter who seems to fight. So, we appreciate the support – we love the support you give Andre. A great home-grown guy in every way and we know that we’re going to do some big business here in the Oakland area and throughout the Bay Area for the fight.

“I would just like to say that the fight will be distributed by all the usual distributors, the cable, the satellite and telephone companies and I guarantee you a good picture, great sound, and a great broadcast that night for the suggested retail price of $54.95. We think we have the best broadcast team in the business and its going to be a fun night to gather friends and the family for a great sporting event.

“I would just say that when a lot is on the line, as there is in this fight, there’s drama – and there’s no better TV then when drama is involved. So, thank you very much and we hope if we don’t see you in Las Vegas hopefully you’ll get a chance to watch it on HBO Pay-Per-View.”

Ward vs. Kovalev 2: “The Rematch,” a 12-round mega-fight for the WBO/IBF/WBA Light Heavyweight World Championships, is presented by Roc Nation Sports, Main Events, Andre Ward Promotions, Krusher Promotions and Corona Extra, and is sponsored by Monster Products and Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino. The championship event takes place Saturday, June 17 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas and will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT.

Follow the conversation using #WardKovalev. Follow us:

Boxing at Cache Creek Casino April 15!!

Brooks, CA (April 10, 2017)- Longtime hall of fame promoter Don Chargin Productions and Paco Presents Boxing returns with their first card of 2017 entitled “Todo o Nada” as two-time world title contender Rodrigo Guerrero (25-6-1 16KOs) takes on Fresno, CA’s Mike Ruiz Jr. (11-4-2 4KOs) for the International Boxing Association junior bantamweight title at Cache Creek Casino and Resort in Brooks, CA on April 15th.

Rodrigo Guerrero has fought all across the world in some of the biggest fights possible as he fought Stuart Hall in front of a sold-out crowd in the United Kingdom, lost a very questionable decision to Daiki Kameda that we have included for you to watch (fight here) as well as fighting a prime Vic Darchinyan, whom he went the distance with. Guerrero is as good as ever and is looking for a big win over a young fighter and win a title.

Mike Ruiz Jr. is coming off the biggest win of his career after upsetting rising star in the super flyweight division Bruno Escalante in their rematch last year in Oakland, CA. Ruiz Jr. has been looking to parlay the win into a big fight and now will face a two-time world title contender in hopes of getting redemption with a win over Guerrero as he would win his first ever title.

Ruiz Jr. came up short in his first attempt at winning the IBA title and looks to complete his resurrection of his career by winning the title he fell short of winning four years ago in Redwood City, CA at Cache Creek Casino and Resort.

The co-main event will feature super bantamweight Jose Salgado (35-3-2 28KOs) taking on Javier Gallo (23-13-1 12KOs).

Salgado is a former NABF super flyweight champion, who fought Carlos Cuadras in 2014 for the WBC super flyweight title in which the bout was ruled a draw. Salgado has not fought for a world title since and is looking to get himself into title contention for a Cuadras rematch or a even a bout with Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez in the near future. A win would set-up Salgado amongst the top of the division.

Sacramento, CA featherweight Alberto Torres (8-0-2 4KOs) who knocked out undefeated prospect Adam Fiel in his last bout will take on tough spoiler in Jose Silveria (17-20 6KOs), who has three times the professional experience of Torres and is known for never being an easy outing for anyone.

Salinas, CA super middleweight Rudy Puga Jr. (8-0 7KOs) will look to return from his time off as Puga will have been out of the ring for over a whole year since his last bout. Puga will take Cameron Silveria Riveria (7-4-1 5KOs), who recently fought Global Boxing Organization middleweight champion Quilisto Madera in an action fight last September in Lemoore, CA.

The card will feature 18 year-old welterweight Ivan Vergara (1-0) of Vacaville PAL who is looking to pick up his second win of his professional career will face Manuel Munoz (0-2) of Mexico. Steven Rapadas (Pro Debut) of Sacramento, Ca will make his professional debut against Percy Peterson (1-14-2) in a featherweight bout as well.

Tickets are available at CacheCreek.com, Tickets.com, and Pacopresentsboxing.com, or by calling Cache Creek Casino Resort at 1-800-922-8686..

First bell is at 6PM.

Cache Creek Casino and Resort is located at 14455 State Hwy 16 in Brooks, CA. Please enter the casino and follow signage to the event.

You can join the conversation by using the hashtags #TodoONada #PacoPresentsBoxing. Please follow us on Twitter at @PacoPresentsBox, @CacheCreekCR and @TeamRuiz01. Please follow us on Instagram @PacoPresents, @CacheCreekCasino, @TeamRuiz01, @AlbertOG86, @Champion_831 and @VergaraBoxing. As well as like us on Facebook at facebook.com/PacoPresentsBoxing and facebook.com/cachecreek.

Manuel “Tino” Avila Media Day 4/15

Photo Credit: Julio C. Sanchez/ Team Tino

WHO: MANUEL “TINO” AVILA, FEATHERWEIGHT CONTENDER

WHAT: Media Day for Manuel “Tino” Avila before his PPV
fight against Joseph Diaz Jr. on the Canelo vs. Julio
Cesar Chavez Jr. undercard on May 6th

WHEN: Saturday, April 15, 2017
10:30 AM PST – Media Arrival and Check-in
11 AM PST – Workout begins

WHERE: FightKore International
816 Main St, Martinez, CA 94553

INFORMATION:

Manuel “Tino” Avila (22-0 8KOs), the fighting pride of Fairfield, CA will kick-off the Canelo Alvarez vs. Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. PPV card in Las Vegas, Nevada at the T-Mobile Arena on May 6th. Avila, who faces NABF featherweight champion Joseph Diaz Jr. (23-0 13KOs) in Avila’s biggest test of his career.

Avila will perform a workout for credentialed media as well as will be available to be interviewed for credentialed media as well.

THIS EVENT WILL START AT 11AM SHARP!

Tickets for a closed circuit viewing of the fights at the Grand Ballroom at MGM Grand Hotel & Casino are on sale for $75, not including applicable fees. All seats are general admission and can be purchased at the MGM Grand box office or by phone with a major credit card at 800-745-3000.

Canelo vs. Chávez, Jr. is a 12-round fight presented by Golden Boy Promotions and sponsored by Tecate, BORN BOLD, O’Reilly Auto Parts, Adriana’s Insurance and Interjet. Lemieux vs. Reyes is a 10-round bout presented by Golden Boy Promotions in association with Eye of the Tiger Management. Matthysse vs. Taylor is a 10-round fight present by Golden Boy Promotions in association with Arano Boxing and Star Boxing. The event will take place on Saturday, May 6 at T-Mobile Arena and will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT.

Andre Ward vs. Sergey Kovalev II “No Excuses” – June 17 at Mandalay Bay

ANDRE WARD VS. SERGEY KOVALEV II
“NO EXCUSES”
SET FOR SATURDAY, JUNE 17
AT MANDALAY BAY EVENTS CENTER IN LAS VEGAS

PRESENTED LIVE BY HBO PAY-PER-VIEW®

NEW YORK, NY (April 4, 2017) – Roc Nation Sports, Main Events, Andre Ward Promotions and Krusher Promotions are pleased to announce the highly anticipated rematch between the unified Light Heavyweight Champion of the World, Andre “SOG” Ward (31-0, 15 KOs) and former title holder Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev (30-1-1, 26 KOs). Ward vs. Kovalev II “No Excuses” will take place Saturday, June 17 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas. The championship event, presented by Corona Extra, will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT.

Team Ward and Team Kovalev will partake in a three-city press tour the week of April 10 to officially announce the fight, including New York City, the Bay Area and Los Angeles. Further details will be available in the coming days.

“I’m going to keep it short and sweet. You got what you asked for – now you have to see me on June 17. This time…leave the excuses at home,” said Ward.

“I’m glad to know that rematch will happen. I really hope that Andre Ward will get into the ring for this rematch. Fans of boxing will see the real Krusher–the one they have missed for couple of my last fights. For me this rematch is very important as no other bout in my entire boxing career. Thanks a lot to all of boxing fans,” said Kovalev.

“Roc Nation Sports is proud to be the lead promoter behind a boxing rematch for the ages,” said Michael Yormark, Roc Nation President & Chief of Branding and Strategy. “Last November, Andre showed the world he was boxing’s best. No doubt he will build upon his legacy come June 17 in another historic night. There’s no excuses, the rematch is on.”

“After the last fight, we are preparing for another unbelievable experience. Can’t wait for the bell to ring! This is sure to be another nail-biting roller coaster ride,” said Kathy Duva, CEO, Main Events. “This is the only fight that Sergey wants right now and he refused to settle for anything less than the chance to get his belts back. I’m told that Roc Nation and Andre Ward have lots of great ideas for the promotion and we can’t wait to see them in action!”

“After a razor thin decision last November in their first meeting, the boxing community has been eagerly waiting for a Ward-Kovalev rematch,” said Tony Walker, Vice President, HBO Pay-Per-View. “These are two world class prizefighters who embrace being on the sport’s biggest stage. Like Andre and Sergey, we can’t wait for June 17th at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas.”

“This spectacular rematch of pound-for-pound champions will be a ‘can’t-miss’ fight at the Mandalay Bay Events Center,” said Richard Sturm, President of Entertainment and Sports for MGM Resorts International. “We look forward to working with both Roc Nation Sports and Main Events once again on this championship event which should be one of the most thrilling fights of 2017.”

Known for his strong character and integrity outside the ring and his warrior’s instinct inside it, 33-year-old Andre Ward’s skill and talent were apparent early in his outstanding amateur career. He racked up every title in the books, culminating in a gold medal in the light heavyweight division at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Greece. As the only male American boxer to claim Olympic gold in the past decade, Ward joined the likes of Muhammad Ali, Sugar Ray Leonard and Oscar De La Hoya. He turned professional on December 18, 2004, scoring a second round technical knockout victory over Chris Molina at Staples Center in a fight that was televised live on HBO. He has gone on to rack up an undefeated record since then, building an ever-growing legion of fans in the process. After becoming the Ring Magazine and WBA Super Middleweight World Champion, rising to the number two spot on the pound-for-pound list and winning the 2011 Fighter of the Year Award (ESPN, Sports Illustrated, Ring Magazine and the Boxing Writers Association of America), it was announced that Ward signed an exclusive promotional agreement with Roc Nation Sports in January 2015, opening a new chapter in his storied boxing career. Ward returned to the ring on June 20, 2015 at the Oracle Arena in front of his hometown fans in Oakland, California and scored a ninth-round knockout over Paul Smith. On March 26, 2016, Ward made his highly publicized 175-pound debut against Cuba’s undefeated and IBF number one rated light heavyweight contender Sullivan Barrera and came out victorious. Ward continued his conquest of the light heavyweight division on August 6, 2016, with a unanimous decision over Alexander Brand. Immediately following the win, Ward announced that he will be taking on unified Light Heavyweight Champion Sergey Kovalev in the ultimate showdown for division supremacy and recognition as the best pound-for-pound fighter. In the most anticipated fight of 2016 on November 19 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Ward would prove to the world his dominance as one of boxing’s top pound-for-pound fighters by becoming the unified World Light Heavyweight Champion with a unanimous decision win over Kovalev, the reigning WBA, IBF and WBO titleholder.

Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev, the Russian Wrecking Ball, 34, is currently ranked #2 Pound-for-Pound by Ring Magazine and has been dominating boxing’s light heavyweight division with his aggressive, fan-friendly style since his breakout performance against then-unbeaten Nathan Cleverly in 2013 when he won the WBO Light Heavyweight World Title. One year after winning his WBO title Sergey went on to defeat future Hall-of-Famer Bernard “The Alien” Hopkins in a 12-round unanimous decision victory to add the WBA and IBF Light Heavyweight World Titles to his mantle. His rise to boxing stardom has been meteoric, as he has gone from an unknown fighter from Chelyabinsk, Russia to headlining HBO Pay-Per-View in just four years after signing with his first promoter, Main Events. In his last fight, Kovalev went the distance against former two-time world champion Andre “SOG” Ward. The bout ended in a highly-contested unanimous decision against Sergey even though Kovalev managed to knock down Ward and many thought the cards should have gone in his favor. Out of Kovalev’s 30 career victories 26 have come by way of knockout. Additionally, he has entered into championship rounds only three times in his professional career. Kovalev has always sought to test himself against the best boxing has to offer; he wants to prove in the ring that he deserves that mantle.

Ward vs. Kovalev II “No Excuses,” a 12-round mega-fight for the WBO/IBF/WBA light heavyweight championships, is presented by Roc Nation Sports, Main Events, Andre Ward Promotions, Krusher Promotions and Corona Extra, and is sponsored by Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino. The championship event takes place Saturday, June 17 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas and will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT.

Follow the conversation using #WardKovalev.