Pound for pound king Andre Ward attempted to take Sergey Kovalev down a peg this week as the pair embarked on a three-city press tour to promote their summer rematch.
Ward defeated Kovalev in a hotly-debated twelve round contest last November in Las Vegas, and after some thoughts on his future, has decided to follow through with a contracted second bout this coming June 17.
As the top two light-heavyweights in the world sized each other up once more, Ward sought to take away Kovalev’s intimidating demeanor before they go their separate ways and crank up training for the PPV clash.
Talk of robbery first time around and neutral judges from the Kovalev camp hasn’t sat well with Ward, who make his feelings clear at the final leg of their media run.
“You’ve got a lot of misinformation coming from that side. You’ve got a lot of lies coming from that side. A lot of old school tactics. It’s 2017 man. All that old school stuff that his side is trying to do, it’s not going to work,” said Ward.
“At the end of the day, we’ve got a date. You’re selling fear, we’re not buying it. At the end of the day, you’ve got to see me June 17. I don’t care what you say, I don’t care where you’re from, I don’t care how you came up, it doesn’t matter bro. You’re going to have to see me June 17, it’s that simple.
“I didn’t have to take this fight. This fight is for you, the fans. This fight is for the boxing community, because this is the fight everybody clamored about.
“At the end of the day, where I come from, it’s about showing up. It’s not about all that talking. It sells tickets, it sells Pay-Per-Views and we get a couple of headlines. But if you watch my career, we don’t say anything we just go get it done. June 17 is going to be no different. Reality check.”
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.