Sergey Kovalev revitalizes career with decisive win over Eleider Alvarez in rematch

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FRISCO, Texas — Sergey Kovalev’s ability to still compete like, well, Sergey Kovalev, was in serious doubt entering Saturday night.

The last time Kovalev was in the ring, he was dropped three times and brutally knocked out by Eleider Alvarez. He elected to go straight to an immediate rematch, amid whispers that he was a shell of his former self, a boogeyman who vanquished opponents before they even entered the ring.

Kovalev again switched trainers after a defeat, this time linking up with Buddy McGirt. He again made excuses, just like he did after consecutive losses to Andre Ward, and blamed overtraining on the three defeats. None of the optics bode well for Kovalev, but none of it mattered.

He stuck to the game-plan devised by McGirt, a hall-of-fame fighter, and utilized his excellent jab to keep Alvarez at bay and avenge his defeat from six months ago with a unanimous decision victory Saturday at Ford Center in the main event of Top Rank Boxing on ESPN+. One judge scored it a shutout, 120-108; the other two scorecards read 116-112.

“We worked a lot on my jab,” Kovalev said. “Right now, I am working with Buddy the way I was when I was an amateur. After this, I want unification fights.”


Mike Coppinger is the Senior Writer for Follow him on Twitter: @MikeCoppinger

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