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5 Things We Learned: Kovalev Vs Hopkins

Glax0r's Photo Glax0r 10 Nov 2014

Five things we learned

By Brian Campbell | ESPN.com
After Sergey Kovalev’s one-sided domination of ageless wonder Bernard Hopkins in Saturday’s light heavyweight title unification bout from Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, New Jersey, here are five things we learned:

1. Kovalev is who we thought he might be.

It was easy to question whether Kovalev (26-0-1, 23 KOs) was everything his gaudy knockout percentage led you to believe entering the fight. But despite his never having been past eight rounds as a professional or having faced an elite opponent, the Russian destroyer finally earned the critical respect he has coveted. In fact, he might even be better than we thought. Facing a durable, difficult opponent who was able to take the fight into the championship rounds, Kovalev showed us there was far more to his craft than a big right hand. After making a statement by knocking the 49-year-old Hopkins (55-7-2, 32 KOs) down in the opening round, Kovalev nearly bookended the feat by coming dangerously close to becoming the first fighter to finish Hopkins in the closing seconds of the final round. In between, it was all Kovalev, all the time, in a performance that solidified him as for real.

2. There are plenty of wrinkles in Kovalev’s game.
Through 26 professional fights entering Saturday night, Kovalev hadn’t been in too many situations in which he needed to prove he can box. His power has been more than enough. But Kovalev made a statement with both...

READ THE FULL ARTICLE ON ESPN AT: http://espn.go.com/b...gs-we-learned-2