Advertisement: IBO Boxing
Advertisement
Boxingscene.com
Advertisement

McGirt: Kovalev Proved Critics Wrong, He's Ready For Canelo!

By Manouk Akopyan

Sergey Kovalev survived a serious scare Saturday against Anthony Yarde.

In the eighth round of their fight, the Brit was manhandling the Russian and seemed moments away from securing a stunning upset. When the embattled Kovalev returned to his corner, trainer Buddy McGirt had a candid conversation with his fighter.

If he took any more punishment, McGirt was going to end the fight.

 sergey-kovalev (2)_10

Stopping the fight might be a sensitive matter for McGirt. Just last month, McGirt was cornering another Russian in Maxim Dadashev, who took too much punishment in his fight, suffered brain injuries that placed him in a medically induced coma, and then died just days later. 

Kovalev knew he had to show his coach something of significance.

“He told me, ‘don’t stop it. He’s getting tired now,’” McGirt told BoxingScene.com. “I knew he was OK. It was a matter of him losing focus for that moment. Sergey got a little lazy, keeping Yarde on the outside was a little too easy. I told him I’m going to give him one more round to show me something, and he got back on what he was supposed to do. I can’t let [Maxim Dadashev’s death] stop me from doing what I need to do.”

Kovalev returned in the ninth round a man renewed, and quickly turned around his gloomy outlook in a fight he was closely winning on all three scorecards.

“By him getting lazy, Yarde got more confident. But after that, he was a dead man. He shot his load,” McGirt said. “Sergey fought very well, especially in front of a hometown crowd when fighters have a tendency of wanting to impress and burning unnecessary energy. He pulled it together. It was outstanding.”

After the fight, McGirt walked over to Yarde’s locker and told him, “you surprised me.”

“He fought a young and strong guy who came to win,” said McGirt. “Anthony wasn’t there for a payday. In these kinds of fights, you’re going to get hit. It’s how you recover and come back. Sergey recovered and came back better.”

Yarde showed signs of success throughout the fight, particularly in the seventh stanza with a strong body attack that made Kovalev noticeably uncomfortable. Yarde landed a total of 132 punches on Kovalev, a tally that McGirt said was too much for his liking.

“You learn with each fight,” said McGirt. “Now he knows what he has to do in that situation, which is to make the guy pay for the price of coming inside. They can’t get past his jab. It’s too strong.

Kovalev knocked out a tired Yarde with a jab in the eleventh, a rare feat for any fighter.

When asked how Kovalev can withstand a body attack should he fight a smaller Canelo Alvarez next, a fight that is looking like a real possibility by each passing day, McGirt said “well have a remedy for that.”

Canelo had a field day crushing the body of Rocky Fielding in his super middleweight debut last year by attacking the taller fighter’s ribs for as long as the fight lasted. Standing four inches shorter than Kovalev, Canelo might just do the same should they ever meet. Kovalev succumbed to Andre Ward the second time they met due to a series of body blows. 

McGirt said he was pleased with Kovalev’s endurance and heart, and that conditioning won’t be an issue for the body-attacking Alvarez. 

“Sergey is ready for Canelo without a doubt. He showed that he still belongs. People wrote him off saying ‘he’s old, he’s this, he’s that,’ and he proved them wrong. He still belongs at the top. He still has that fire burning inside to be the best,” McGirt said. “I don’t care who Sergey fights next, but if Canelo wants to step up to the big boys, then Sergey’s going to have to beat him.” 

Manouk Akopyan has been a member of the Boxing Writers Assn. of America since 2011 and has written for the Los Angeles Times, USA Today, the Guardian and Philadelphia Inquirer. He can be reached on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and YouTube at @ManoukAkopyan or via email at manouk.akopyan@gmail.com.

User Comments and Feedback
Comment by cameltoe on 08-29-2019

[QUOTE=PunchyPotorff;20022064]Quote: Originally Posted by PunchyPotorff View Post Meanwhile, Ward's is up your back door. Boxing Logic just said some reality that you found very uncomfy. So you lash out. Meanwhile, Ward DID punch Kovalev in the balls multiple times. No…

Comment by PunchyPotorff on 08-29-2019

Quote: Originally Posted by PunchyPotorff View Post Meanwhile, Ward's is up your back door. Boxing Logic just said some reality that you found very uncomfy. So you lash out. Meanwhile, Ward DID punch Kovalev in the balls multiple times. No…

Comment by cameltoe on 08-29-2019

[QUOTE=PunchyPotorff;20015934] Meanwhile, Ward's is up your back door. Boxing Logic just said some reality that you found very uncomfy. So you lash out. Meanwhile, Ward DID punch Kovalev in the balls multiple times. No matter how much deflectorama you Wardaholics…

Comment by Shadoww702 on 08-28-2019

[QUOTE=whoseyourdaddy;20017824]No he is not, but I hate it that his boxer got in trouble in one round and he wants to stop the fight? Kovalev is a warrior/champion, not a puss I did not like that attitude. Kovalev was winning…

Comment by whoseyourdaddy on 08-27-2019

[QUOTE=Shadoww702;20015658]I think they’re perfect for each other. And Kovalov actually listens to him. He responded exactly like he should during the 9th round. [B]Buddy isn’t a fool.[/B][/QUOTE] No he is not, but I hate it that his boxer got in…

ADD COMMENT VIEW COMMENTS (47)
Advertisement
Top Headlines
Estrada: I've Avenged Two Defeats - Only Chocolatito is Left Beterbiev-Deines Card To Get Pushed Back Until January Kash Farooq Promises To Show Improvements on Usyk-Chisora Card Eddie Hearn Looks To Implement UFC Model With One Champ Per Division By 2021 Umar Kremlev Announces AIBA Presidential Bid, Calls For Unity And Reform Arum: Lopez-Loma Rating Shows A Lot Of Sports Fans Out There Like Boxing Devin Haney: Gervonta Davis Definitely Underestimated Gamboa Brook: Khan Didn't Believe He Would Win, Crawford Knows I'm Dangerous Mario Barrios: Having My First Title Defense In San Antonio Is Huge Chocolatito Brings Career Back From The Brink With Banner Year Derek Chisora Finishes Up Camp For Oleksandr Usyk Fight Chavez Jr. Home is Burglarized, $750K in Valuables Taken Golden Boy Seeks Arbitration In Canelo Lawsuit; All Contracts Filed With Court Michael Dutchover Return Falls Out, Show Will Move Forward Best Way To Enhance Lopez's Emerging Profile? Challenge Manny Pacquiao WBO Orders Golden Boy To Deliver Date, Location For Teixeira-Castano Title Fight Mauricio Sulaiman's Home is Burglarized, Items Taken Castano: Still Waiting For A Fight Date, All I See Is Teixeira Trash-Talking On Instagram Arum Doubts Wilder's Manager Has Read Contract For Fury Trilogy Jason Moloney: I Asked For Inoue Fight, Now It's Time To Bring Belts Back To Australia Ryan Karl Hopes Win Over Mario Barrios Can Lead To Taylor or Ramirez Brook: I Applaud Crawford For Taking The Fight, He'll Be in There With a Monster! Santa Cruz: My Body is Growing, Feeling Much Stronger At This New Weight Hearn Wonders How Usyk Will Do Under Heavy Fire From Chisora Euro News: Hammer Return Delayed, Mollenberg, Jurk Goes Pro, More Khabib Wants To See Oleksandr Usyk Face Tyson Fury Parker Begins Training Camp For Fa, Trainer Finishes 14 Day Quarantine Leo Santa Cruz: I'm Fighting This Fight For My Family, For My Dad Gervonta Davis: Gamboa Fight Wasn't My Best Performance, It Was Bad For My Fans Crawford vs. Brook To Air Live on Premier Sports 1 In UK Arum on Lopez’s Future: Garcia and Davis Are Big Fights - Haney is Not! Dan Rafael Breaks Down His International Boxing Hall of Fame Votes Kaisy Khademi vs. Ijaz Ahmed Added To November 13 BT Sport Card Berlanga: I'm Ready To Go Rounds, But See Fear in Eyes of Opponents Povetkin Will Be in Better Form For Whyte Rematch, Says Promoter Alex Vargas, Melissa Parker Eye Up Big Challenges in The New Year With Canelo In Limbo, Munguia Borrows The Mexican Torch And Eyes GGG Gervonta Davis' Weight Issues Have Been Blown Out Of Proportion, Ellerbe Says Chocolatito, Estrada Look Forward To Rematch War in 2021 Lipinets' Manager Prefers Porter or Abdukakhorov Next, Not Clayton
Advertisement
Advertisement
Latest Forum Threads
Advertisement
Advertisement