De La Hoya Expects Hopkins to Distract, Frustrate Kovalev

By Keith Idec

NEW YORK – Oscar De La Hoya realizes Sergey Kovalev is favored, undefeated and has knocked out 23 of his 26 professional opponents.

Bernard Hopkins’ promotional partner still can’t see the legendary light heavyweight champion losing to the rugged Russian in their light heavyweight championship unification fight Saturday night at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City (HBO; 10:45 ET).

“I can already see this fight panning out in a way where Kovalev, after three or four rounds, possibly gets frustrated, starts making mistakes and starts diverting from his original plan,” De La Hoya told “Kovalev, I’m sure, is convincing himself, ‘I’m not going to get distracted. I’m not going to get frustrated. I’m going to stick to my game plan.’ But in reality, when you step up in the ring against a Hopkins he knows how to distract you, he knows how to frustrate you and he just knows how to push your buttons, without saying a word. The next thing you know, it’s the 12th round and you’re losing the fight.”

De La Hoya, knocked out by Hopkins in the ninth round of their middleweight title fight 10 years ago, expects Kovalev (25-0-1, 23 KOs) to struggle once he realizes he can’t take out the 49-year-old Hopkins (55-6-2, 32 KOs, 2 NC) the way he has other opponents throughout his five-year pro career. Hopkins has never been knocked out, despite boxing numerous punchers in the middleweight and light heavyweight divisions.

“He has a lack of experience,” De La Hoya said regarding Kovalev. “How will he react to a level of fighting he has never experienced? That all has to come into play sooner or later. Whether it’s the first round or the 10th round, it’s going to catch up to you. It’s starts taking over you and it starts becoming out of your control, because you’ve never experienced it. Can he adapt? Does he have Plan A? Does he have Plan B? Does he have Plan C? I’ve seen Kovalev and he has one plan, and that plan is to knock you out.”

Keith Idec covers boxing for The Record and Herald News, of Woodland Park, N.J., and He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by Stuntman Mike on 11-07-2014

Hopkins is amazing ,he has some gonads fighting Kovalev its a even bigger task than Ali with Foreman

Comment by STEELHEAD on 11-07-2014

[QUOTE=Golovkin;15080560]Also expect him to excessively clinch, head butt, lead in with his head, act like he is hurt, try to pull out of the fight, try to get Kovalev DQd... This dirty sissy will try all of his tricks. I…

Comment by jas on 11-07-2014

[QUOTE=have_not;15080820]?Hopkins are taller and have longer reach, his dam head is bigger. how do you know kovalevs walking around weight? By your logic manuel charr is bigger than wladimir klitschko because wladimirs "walking around weight" is lower then charrs[/QUOTE] Because…

Comment by have_not on 11-07-2014

[QUOTE=jas;15080794]he is bigger, bernard's natural weight/walking around weight is lower than kovalevs.[/QUOTE] ?Hopkins are taller and have longer reach, his dam head is bigger. how do you know kovalevs walking around weight? By your logic manuel charr is bigger than…

Comment by chocolatemula on 11-07-2014

Really hope Hopkins pulls this off...I have my doubts though. Kovalev is a beast.

Post a Comment - View More User Comments (18)
Top Headlines Lomachenko vs. Crolla Ordered To Purse Bid on February 4 Demetrius Andrade Outboxes, Stops Artur Akavov in Twelfth Oscar Rivas Knocks Out Bryant Jennings in Twelfth Round Pablo Cesar Cano Destroys Jorge Linares in One Round Shocker TJ Doheny Stops Ryohei Takahashi in Eleven Rounds Shakur Stevenson Blasts Out Jessie Cris Rosales in Four Chris Algieri Holds Off Late Rally, Outpoints Danny Gonzalez Photos: Badou Jack, Marcus Browne Nearly Erupt at Weigh-In Photos: Manny Pacquiao, Adrien Broner - Ready For War Amanda Serrano Blasts Voaberger, Becomes 7 Division Champ Overweight Tepora Replaced On PPV, Stripped of Interim WBA Title Top Rank on ESPN Early Results From Turning Stone Casino Photos: Maurice Hooker, Mikkel LesPierre - Go Face To Face Photos: Dmitry Bivol, Joe Smith - Go Face To Face in New York Pacquiao-Broner Weigh-In Results From MGM Grand Bivol-Smith 3/9 DAZN Show Heading To Turning Stone Resort Andrade vs. Akavov LIVE Results From Madison Square Garden Video: Devin Haney, Teofimo Lopez - Trade Words, Face To Face Manny Pacquiao Guaranteed At Least $20 Million For Broner Bout Raja Amasheh: I Feel Like Amanda Serrano, WBO Stole My Title Akavov Sees Andrade Win As His Middleweight Lottery Ticket Jessie Vargas Wants Kell Brook Showdown on April 6 Crawford: I've Been Hit With Bigger Shots Since Gamboa Fight Photos: Thorslund vs. Graf, Ceylan vs. Sanchez - On Weight Andrade: Saunders Unprofessional, But If It Happens, It Happens Krael, McCarter, Hitchins, Cortes Win in Las Vegas: Bellows Loses News: Lerena vs. Mann, Nico Hernandez, Sam Bowen, More Malignaggi: Danny Garcia wins 'close, tricky fight' with Granados Hearn: I Don't Believe We've Yet Seen The Best of Andrade Bob Arum: Al Haymon is Doing a Disservice to His Welterweights Andrade: I'm The Best Talent Out There at 154, 160, Maybe 168's Television Picks of The Week - January 18 UK News: Joyce-Tiffney, Archie Sharp, Danny Dignum, More Why Are So Many Boxing Fans Still Drawn To Adrien Broner? Kovalev Charged With Felony Assault, Allegedly Punched Woman Video: Malignaggi Breaks Down Canelo-Jacobs, Pacquiao-Broner Video: Memo Heredia Talks Pacquiao-Broner, Spence-Garcia Video: Badou Jack Ready For Marcus Browne Clash Video: Broner's Trainer Gives Take on Pacquiao Fight Video: Dillian Whyte Discusses Being a Free Agent, More

Latest Active Forum Threads