Exclusive: Duva wanted Pascal v Stevenson eliminator, settled for Kovalev rematch

Main Events promoter Kathy Duva has informed WBN that a proposed return between world light-heavyweight champion Sergey Kovalev and Jean Pascal should become a reality.

The pair first met back in March at the Bell Centre in Montreal, Canada in what was an entertaining contest whilst it lasted. Kovalev eventually used his brute strength to get Pascal out of there in eight but both sides believe a second outing is warranted due to demand.

Duva now hopes to put the finishing touches to a rematch at the same venue on January 30, 2016 and explained that initial plans to pit Pascal v Adonis Stevenson in a final eliminator for Kovalev were thwarted.

“When the first Kovalev v Pascal fight ended, I was literally accosted by a group of reporters who asked if Sergey would consider coming back to Montreal to give Pascal a rematch,” Duva exclusively told World Boxing News.

“The fight was exciting, competitive and fun. And at the moment it ended, everyone wanted to see more.

“Saying that, Interbox and Main Events agreed that it would be a better plan to let Pascal fight Adonis Stevenson first and then have the winner fight Sergey next. There is no denying that would have been the better option, but unfortunately, the Stevenson people turned down yet another opportunity.”

Discussing further why the second bout will work, Duva stated: “Pascal is the highest rated light heavyweight who is willing to fight Sergey at this moment.

“I don’t want to speak for him, but I think that Pascal believes that the time he spent in the ring with Sergey last March has given him some insight into what he needs to change in order to win their next fight. And Sergey, of course, wants the chance to ‘kick his ass better than last time.’

“So it has all the makings of a fight that will be entertaining and fun for the fans. Although it is still not official, I expect it will all work out,” she added.