Sullivan Barrera Turns Down Kovalev Fight To Face WBA Champ

Barrera & KovalevBack At MSG on March 3rd


It appears that Cuban light heavyweight contender Sullivan Barrera, 21-1 14KO,  has once again turned down an opportunity to face former unified and current WBO champion Sergey Kovalev. Instead Barrera will face WBA champion Dmitry Bivol, 12-0 10KO, on March 3rd.

The fight will be the co-feature to the Kovalev, 31-2-1, vs Igor Mikhalkin main event in The Theater at Madison Square Garden. The fight was first offered to Barrera, but Barrera declined for the second straight time to face Kovalev.

According to a source inside Barrera’s team he agreed to a purse to fight Bivol before he even fought Felix Valera, 15-2, 13 KO, last month. The agreement would’ve allowed Barrera allowed him to face Kovalev if he so chose to. 

Kovalev was able to win back the WBO title when he stopped Shabranskyy, 19-2, 16 KO, in the second round of their fight for the vacant WBO belt. The Russian had lost the WBO belt along with the IBF & WBA when he lost to former P4P king Andre Ward.

Mikhalkin, 21-1 9 KO, has won 10 straight fights since suffering his only loss back in May 2010. He also owns the IBO light heavyweight title although at the time of publication he was not ranked in the top 15 by the WBO. reached out to Kathy Duva of Main Events, who promotes Kovalev, Barrera and American rights to Bivol, but she wouldn’t give any comment at this time.

By: Chris ‘Bone’ Henderson

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