Andre Ward vs. Sergey Kovalev II goes down this Saturday in Vegas: All you need to know and more!

Photo Credit: Roc Nation Sports

The highly anticipated rematch between the unified Light Heavyweight Champion of the World, Andre ‘SOG’ Ward (31-0, 15 KOs) and former title-holder Sergey ‘Krusher’ Kovalev (30-1-1, 26 KOs) dubbed “No Excuses” will take place Saturday, June 17 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas. The championship event, presented by Corona Extra, will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT.

Fight Week Final Press Conference:

Ward rallied from an early knockdown in their first fight on Nov. 16, 2016 and came on strong in the second half of the fight to earn a narrow 114-113 unanimous decision victory on all three cards. As always, a fight that close on the cards came with cries of controversy.

First Fight Highlights:

“I’m going to keep it short and sweet. You got what you asked for – now you have to see me on June 17. This time…leave the excuses at home,” said Ward.

“I’m glad to know that rematch will happen. I really hope that Andre Ward will get into the ring for this rematch. Fans of boxing will see the real Krusher–the one they have missed for couple of my last fights. For me this rematch is very important as no other bout in my entire boxing career. Thanks a lot to all of boxing fans,” said Kovalev.

Rematch Video Preview:





On the heels of the most anticipated fight of the summer, here is what some of the media are predicting for Andre Ward vs. Sergey Kovalev 2: “The Rematch” on Saturday, June 17 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas. The championship event, presented by Corona Extra, will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT.


Tim Dahlberg, Associated Press

I had Kovalev winning the first fight, so maybe I’m the wrong one to ask. But I think a boxer always has an easier time making adjustments than a puncher and that should favor Ward in the rematch. Ward has a good measure on Kovalev’s power and he’s really good at switching things up in the ring, as he did in the late rounds of the first fight. I think it goes the distance again, with Ward taking a unanimous decision.


Ward: Unanimous Decision


Bernard Fernandez,

There is an expanding school of thought that Ward, the craftsman/technician, will be even better the second time around, having had 12 rounds and months of tape time to work out an even more intricate fight plan. I’m not sure I buy into that. Kovalev is no one-trick pony; he has skills to go along with superior power. If it’s a KO, he probably gets it, and it’s not out of the question that he can win on points as well. Let’s call it “Krusher” by 10th round stoppage.


Kovalev: 10th Round Stoppage


Keith Idec,

Kovalev by split decision. There isn’t much separating these elite light heavyweights. Expect another very competitive fight that includes several more very difficult rounds to score. Kovalev will win a debatable decision this time and create demand for a rubber match.


Kovalev: Split Decision



Michael Rosenthal, Editor Ring

Ward was successful in the second half of his first fight with Kovalev because he made necessary adjustments. I believe he’ll carry that knowledge and momentum into the rematch, which he’ll win by a unanimous decision in another competitive fight. No controversy this time.


Ward: Unanimous Decision



Matt Christie, Boxing News Online

Just like the first contest, this one is exceptionally hard to call and the events of that closer than close opener do little to make the job of choosing a winner any easier. Kovalev was a menace throughout, but perhaps the defining factor could be Ward’s ability to adjust. He did it in the first bout whereas Kovalev struggled to when it became clear the tide was turning. The pick is for Ward to win again on points, but without the controversy.


Ward: Unanimous Decision


Brian Campbell,

Ward has already tasted Kovalev’s power and figured out ways to adjust and disarm “The Krusher.” That puts the pressure on the former champion. While you can expect Kovalev to be more aggressive, Ward just seems to have an answer for every style thrown at him.


Ward: Unanimous Decision


Willard Ogan, NBC Sports Bay Area

The fight will start slow with Ward working inside. Body shots will do Kovalev in.


Ward: 10th Round TKO


Michael Woods,

Ward adapted pretty quick to the Russian’s attack. We should see “Round 13” look like the second two-thirds of fight one. Unless Sergey is fresher on fight night because he’s not over trained. But he is 34, and he is what he is. Ward is the better adaptor, and a defensive master.


Ward: Unanimous Decision


Daiske Sugiura, Yahoo! Japan

Kovalev might be spending too much energy on hating Ward, which could backfire, and Ward is calm and collected, focused on what he needs to do. That being said, I watched the first fight twice, scored it for Kovalev both times. Quite simply, Kovalev is a better and stronger fighter at this weight class, it won’t change, and the judges will get it right this time.


Kovalev: Unanimous Decision




 Harold Lederman’s HBO Preview: 



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, sponsored by Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, Jetlux, Life10 Electrolyte, Zappos, D’USSÉ Cognac, ProSupps and Powered by Monster. 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. Tickets for Ward-Kovalev 2: “The Rematch” are available on and at the Mandalay Bay Events Center Box Office.



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