The World Boxing Council called a purse bid earlier this year in order to get both sides negotiating to make the biggest fight out there at 175lbs, although ultimately Sulaiman was beaten by Kovalev’s lucrative contract with HBO.
Main Events decided to pull WBO, WBA and IBF champion Kovalev from the bids as green belt holder and Showtime fighter Stevenson refused to trade blows on the network, leaving Sulaiman powerless to stop the Russian and his team from moving on.
“I am very much disappointed that Sergey Kovalev pulled out of the purse bid to fight Adonis Stevenson. We did everything that was needed to make that fight happen. It’s a fight that the public would love to see,” Sulaiman told World Boxing News.
“Unfortunately, commercial contracts got in the way, but Kovalev is a great champion and he has been very nice, respectful and honourable to the WBC who wish him the best of luck. Hopefully in the near future that fight will materialize.”
Kovalev is all set to defend his unified titles against underdog Nadjib Mohammedi later this month, whilst Stevenson is on the lookout for his next challenger after defeating Sakio Bika in April.
Isaac Chilemba is currently the number one contender to Stevenson’s WBC crown, whilst Sulaiman has already confirmed to WBN that the Malawian will be part of a final eliminator to take place later in 2015.