Sergey Kovalev: Gennady Golovkin's trainer takes credit for Russian's success?Written by Joseph Herron
With less than one month remaining until the historic battle of Light Heavyweights, featuring current WBA, IBF, and WBO champion Sergey Kovalev against former lineal 168 pound champ Andre Ward, the Krusher's former mentor and elite level trainer Abel Sanchez gave his pre-fight prediction for the November 19 meeting.
"Kovalev wins," trainer Abel Sanchez stated to FightHype.com last week.
Although the Big Bear Lake based fight trainer has been consistent with his selection since the fight was made official several months ago, his reasoning for the prediction may be surprising to many interested critics and spectators.
"I just think Sergey Kovalev is a better fighter," stated the head trainer of Gennady Golovkin. "Not a better boxer or technical fighter, but a better pure fighter. Sergey wants to fight, where Andre wants to be cute and be technical, and I think Kovalev will be too big for him."
Some may point to Sanchez as being somewhat biased in his critique, due to the fact that he coached the Russian native while the current champ was still working his way up the professional ranks. While Coach Abel acknowledges Sergey's deep amateur background as the primary source for cultivating his impressive skill set, the heralded coach claims the Krusher's aggressive "seek and destroy" style was nurtured and encouraged while working under his tutelage at his Summit Gym in Big Bear Lake, California.
Despite the fact that most fight fans associate the undefeated KO artist with current trainer and former two-division world champion John David Jackson, Sanchez claims he's predominately responsible for cultivating the Krusher's fan pleasing fight style.
"I made Kovalev," stated Abel Sanchez. "He was with me for eight fights and eight knock-outs...that style that he's got is my style. John's done some good work with him, but that style came from my gym."
To support the coach's theory, the great majority of fighters who train under his tutelage seem to possess a similar aggressive mentality in the ring; Terry and Orlin Norris, Lupe Aquino, Denis Shafikov, Murat Gassiev, and current Middleweight superstar Gennady Golovkin are several convincing examples who fought or currently fight with an aggressive style, in which a fighter will proficiently cut off the ring, close the distance and bang in the pocket.
Sanchez claims the fight tactic is synonymous with his work at the world renowned training facility.
"Doesn't Kovalev's style look familiar," asks the proud fight trainer. "That's not a coincidence."
Sergey Kovalev will defend his Light Heavyweight crown on November 19 against former Olympic gold medalist Andre Ward on HBO PPV. The eventual winner of the scheduled twelve round contest will more than likely be perceived as the top rated pound for pound fighter in boxing.
Or will they? Styles make fights and performances make superstars.
Fan perception will largely be determined by the action that takes place at the T-Mobile Arena in less than a month.