Last night the media got a chance to engage in a Q & A with Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev (24-0-1, 22 KOs) and Blake “Il Capo” Caparello (19-0-1, 6 KOs), and their respective camps, as they prepare to face-off on August 2 at Revel Casino Hotel for the WBO Light Heavyweight Championship. Below are the quotes from the call:
Main Events’ CEO Kathy Duva
We are very excited to head into Sergey Kovalev’s fourth fight on HBO. We are thrilled to be working with them again and with Revel Casino Hotel. Tickets are on sale now on through Ticketmaster. Also HBO is going premiere “2 Days: Sergey Kovalev” on the 26th after the Gennady Golovkin fight.
Sergey impresses me because he doesn’t fight each fighter the same way. He finds out what is going to work and changes his plan to adjust to each fighter. It is a joy to watch him develop. There is nothing in the world like his intensity. Three of last four opponents have been unbeaten. An active fighter is a successful fighter and Sergey just wants to fight.
Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev
Thank you to my promoter, Main Events, to my trainer, John David Jackson, and to all my fans. Blake is undefeated. I am taking him serious. Good opponents are getting serious training camp and I know he is. I just get in to box and to win. We are both stepping in the ring to do our job. Blake has an advantage because he is coming to get the title. He is hungry and has nothing to lose. It is my job to keep the title. More pressure on me to defend the title. I don’t know Bernard Hopkins, all I know is my next opponent and his name is Blake Caparello.
Sergey’s Trainer John David Jackson
Luckily for me Sergey Kovalev is a true professional. I don’t have to watch him or babysit him. He trains like he is still the challenger. Blake is a decent puncher and boxer. Sergey understands this. He knows we have break down Blake slowly. He is not overlooking Blake. He trains very, very hard. I just try to prepare him so he can go on to bigger and better things.
You can’t sell Blake short. Nothing is outstanding but he is very good at what he does. Sergey needs to cut the ring off and he has done very well against Southpaws. Once Blake gets hit and feels Kovalev’s power all his game plans are going to go out the window. I don’t think this is going to go 12 rounds. Sergey is very disciplined. He is very professional. This is his job. He takes each fight like he is the challenger. When we first starting working together he could punch but he was a head hunter. Now he understands a body attack will also help him. We coordinate a plan together. He studied Blake so much he is probably sick of looking at him. I love working with him because he allows me to my job. He is a class act to be around.
Sergey and I have never talked about a fight with Bernard Hopkins. We are focused on Blake. It hasn’t been a distraction at all. We aren’t looking past him we are looking right at him. After we get passed him we will look at Bernard Hopkins.
Blake “Il Capo” Caparello
Sergey Kovalev is the biggest puncher in boxing. Anyone can hit hard. We are working on different game plans to deal with Sergey’s power. I won’t know how hard he punches until I get in the ring with him. If we go toe-to-toe and his power is too much we will change the plan. I do have the pop to stop people. When I put my punches together I can really hurt people. I have had a lot of great sparring camps. If an opening appears, I will go for the knockout but I am going to fight to the end.
I get the sense they are looking past me. I am very confident myself. I know I am going to win and I already told Lou to get me a unification fight with Adonis Stevenson after I beat Kovalev. Nothing plays on my mind. I am very mentally tough. Sergey Kovalev has power but I don’t fear him. I wanted to fight Kovalev because he is the best there is in the division. He is the man I want to beat.
Caparello’s Promoter Lou DiBella
On behalf of Blake and Sam I would like to thank Main Events and HBO. When your name is “Krusher” you know you can punch. This is the fight that Blake wanted and Main Events was nice enough to offer this to us so we jumped on it. Sergey Kovalev is going to have his hands full. The only way to beat Sergey Kovalev is stand right in front of him and box. Blake is a true boxer and Kovalev has a real challenge on his hands. Blake fights like a boxer. This is a fight he desperately wanted. When I first signed him he told me that everyone is afraid of Kovalev but he felt he could beat him. Standing in front of Kovalev is dangerous so Blake has to use angles and avoid that “Krusher” blow. Kovalev is going to have his hands full.
There is a great advantage to fighting Kovalev: if you manage to hang in there with him, you are going to earn the respect of fans. There are a lot of guys who are afraid of Kovalev but Blake isn’t. Blake is going to go out there and do his best to win. I expect a great performance whether he wins or loses.
I knew Blake was a natural. His instincts are excellent. He does a lot of things right. This is the fight he always wanted. I lobbied for the fight and told Main Events we wouldn’t price ourselves out of the fight.
About Kovalev vs. Caparello:
The WBO Light Heavyweight World Championship between Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev, (24-0-1, 22 KOs) and Blake “Il Capo” Caparello (19-0-1, 6 KOs) is on Saturday, August 2nd at Revel Casino Hotel in Atlantic, City, NJ. The fight will be telecast as part of a split-site triple-header on HBO Boxing After Dark beginning at 9:45 PM ET/PT.