Story & photos by John DiSanto – PhillyBoxingHistory.com
Light Heavyweight kings Bernard Hopkins, 55-6-2, 32 KOs, the WBA/IBF 175-pound champion, and Sergey Kovalev, 25-0-1, 23 KOs, champion of the WBO, held court with the Philadelphia media at the Liacouras Center on North Broad Street Tuesday morning. The event was the first stop on a two-city promotional jaunt to promote their upcoming unification fight, scheduled for November 8 at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City. Hopkins and Kovalev stopped in Philly before traveling to New York for a second press conference. Both boxers appeared upbeat and ready to fight.
“I love fighting guys with an undefeated record,” Hopkins said. “I have a history of that. I’m a little envious of that “0”. So I’m going to be the first one. That fighter can no longer be called a virgin. He’s been had. He has a “1”. More than two times I’ve done this. I’ve had a history of making that zero into a one. This is something that I have a pattern of doing. This ain’t just hype-talk. I have a history of taking the “0s” away, and giving the guy a devastating loss.”
“This fight is the most interesting and most important in my career,” Kovalev said. “When I was a child and I watched some fights on TV, Hopkins was what I saw on TV. I never thought that I could fight with Hopkins, but dreams come true in America. Day by day, step by step, I got to this goal, and I’m very happy to get this fight.”
The 12-rounder will be nationally televised by HBO.
To read more on the Philly fight scene – past and present – visit www.phillyboxinghistory.com.