Duva on Canelo vs Kovalev: “I Always Believed it Would Happen!”

Kathy Duva Knew Canelo and Kovalev Would Fight One Day!

Kathy Duva, Canelo Alvarez and Sergey Kovalev
From left to bottom right: Kathy Duva, Canelo Alvarez and Sergey Kovalev.

Kathy Duva Not Surprised by Canelo Call Out

When WBA middleweight champion Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (52-1-2, 35 KO’s) called out WBO light heavyweight champion Sergey “The Krusher” Kovalev (34-3-1, 29 KO’s) the majority of the boxing world was caught by off guard.

The unprompted move seemingly came out of left field. However, veteran promoter Kathy Duva of Main Events, did not share this shocked reaction. In fact, not only was she not stunned, it was a move that she was waiting on.


Having been in the boxing game for several decades, Duva has watched the sport evolve through many seasons. With this long term vantage point, she has been able to recognize a number of reoccurring trends and patterns.

It was this recognition that allowed her to accurately prophesy the outwardly unlikely call out and she shares her “experience” in an interview with SecondsOut.

“It was finally the call came! I have always believed that this was going to happen. I told Sergey back around the time he won his first world title this was going to happen.

“Oh yeah, because look, I’ve been around 42 years in this business now, I see how things go. There are patterns and when you step back long enough and far enough and you start to watch them you see how it happens.”

Yet, as she explained in an interview conducted with SecondsOut, Duva broke her divination down to a matter of science.

She had a fairly solid notion that Alvarez would one day need to make a significant jump up in weight. Having worked around and directly with fighters for so long, she was very confident that her theory would come to fruition.

“A guy like Canelo, first of all, making that 160 that weight that he was at, how old was he; 20 when he was making that weight?

“You can’t keep that up, you gotta move up. ’68 is always a ‘eh’ division. It’s got guys that don’t want the middleweight competition and don’t want the light heavyweight competition.

“[…] He had to go to 175, and he’s a great fighter and great fighters want competition and they want a challenge.

“They want something to make them get up and run in the morning and I had a feeling Canelo was that guy that was going to go there and I was right about him.”


Since the initial notions of this prizefight, popular opinion says Alvarez wants the bout because Kovalev looks like food. Amongst the 175lbs champions Kovalev is the oldest and the only one to be defeated.

The 168lbs division that Canelo completely hopped over is housed by three undefeated champions and one once defeated title holder in Anthony Dirrell. The Krusher has three losses on his professional ledger.

While Duva acknowledges this theory, it’s her belief that Team Alvarez chose to fight Kovalev for more lucrative reasons.

“I think Canelo is a very smart man and he is picking the most marketable fighter at 175 and it really doesn’t matter if he is the best, or the oldest or the weakest or the strongest.

“If Canelo were to step up to 175 and fight someone who doesn’t have the profile of Sergey Kovalev this fight is not that big.

“[…] The thing about Canelo that has impressed me the most in this whole process is his instincts for marketing are spot on.”

When looking it from this stand point, it’s difficult to disagree with Duva. Sure, Canelo could have taken a supposedly more challenging fight in one of the undefeated 175lbs champions.

However, none of the other champions command the long established media presence that the Krusher does. And in the end, regardless of the perception, Sergey Kovalev will not be an easy day in the office for Alvarez.

The talented redhead will have a notable size difference, critical deficit in reach and, of course, a serious weight disparity. Furthermore, Canelo is far from a one-punch KO artist in his current middleweight division.

Sad to say, there is no way to accurately predict how effective or ineffective his punching power will fair against a big, strong natural light heavyweight. So, with all supposed cherry-picking put to the side, this is still one tough prizefight for the Mexican!

By: Bakari Simpson

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1 Comment

  1. It’s funny, the only fans that are excited about this fight are the Canelo fan boys. Everyone else understands that Kovalev is so far behind the 8 ball in this fight. They are claiming there is no catch weight, no hydration clause and the fighters are apart of the VADA clean boxing program. Yet we all know Canelo doesnt take risk, never dares to be great, so what is it that we arent being told? Probably that the drug testing is garbage and Canelo is beyond being a dirty fighter. Not to mention there is no way Kovalev is going to win in Vegas if this fight goes to the cards. GGG beat the breaks off Canelo in that first fight, easily winning 10 rounds to 2, and was given a draw. Second fight, 8 rounds to 4, still GGG, and then they take all of his titles and crown Canelo the new king of the division. Well thats simple trash. GGG has been everything us as fans want from a fighter, and he was punished for it. Now the establishment is going to punish Kovalev. I guess Kovalev could pass on the fight. But where else can he make this kind of payday? So Kovalev is basically willing to take a dive for a retirement payday. I fear if Kovalev knocks Canelo out, they will Disqualify him. Say he fouled Canelo. If this fight were really on the level, these odds wouldnt be so high in favor of Canelo. No way. But Vegas already knows the fix is in. Its funny, no fighter in the history of boxing has been able to go up and down in weight and have continued success the way Canelo does. Yet no one, not even boxing trainers or fighters are coming forward to be honest in whats going on. Except one guy. Paulie Malinagi. Paulie has no fear of throwing Canelo under the bus and call him out on his continued PED use. Paulie knows Canelo is dirty, and hates that other fighters are then forced to use PED’s too, to protect themselves from potentially getting killed in that ring. Not to mention, if youre a clean fighter, your odds of winning against a dirty Canelo go way down. GGG beat him, beat him easy. But there arent many GGG’s walking around. And they robbed him anyways, so a lot of good it did GGG to stay clean. Maybe GGG should fired into some rotten beef, then maybe he couldve knocked Canelo clean out, and retained his belts. Right now GGG should be the one setting up a mega fight with Kovalev. A real fight that fans can be proud of. GGG should be writing his own ticket, and putting himself in a position to call out Andre Ward. But now, having had all his momentum taken away from him, flushing him back down to the bottom, GGG is basically stuck fighting guys like Andrade, Charlo, or Jacobs. Not much money there….Thats a damn shame. Hopefully Kovalev can change history, KO Canelo and put an end to this madness. I have covered boxing for a great number of years, seen all the best fighters since the early 1980’s, and never have I seen a more overrated, manufactured champion than Canelo Alvarev. I think hes an embarrassment to all of Mexican boxing, and puts a black mark over country. So many legends over the years that have helped build the legacy of Mexican boxing and this guy comes along and ruins it. Fans in Mexico need to rise up and demand better. Golden Boy is getting away with exploiting the largest fan base in the sport and making them all look stupid by selling them bogus goods and a fraud. Eventually Canelo will get exposed by the public and when he does, someone is going to have to answer for this.

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About Bakari S.3019 Articles
Bakari is a Senior Writer for 3kingsboxing.com. Visit cheetahhead.com to view more of his literary work.