Saturday, June 22, 2024  |


Roc Nation finally ready to focus on Ward-Kovalev rematch

Photo by: Tom Hogan/ Hoganphotos
Fighters Network

Roc Nation, as well as Andre Ward, have spent the last several weeks basking in the glow of Ward’s close win over Sergey Kovalev on Nov. 19 for the WBA/IBF/WBO light heavyweight titles.

With the holidays over and Miguel Cotto’s fight with James Kirkland set for Feb. 25 in Texas, Roc Nation exec Michael Yormark said he plans to finally turn his attention to working on the immediate rematch with Kovalev, as mandated in the contract for the first fight.

“We all said once we get back from the holidays, we’ll start thinking about it,” Yormark told on Wednesday. “Now that the holidays are over, obviously, it’s something that we’re going to have to start thinking about and we will.”

And Yormark anticipates having more pull in the negotiations with Kathy Duva of Main Evens for the second fight after Ward’s come-from-behind victory against Kovalev. The first fight was colored with contentious talks between the sides.

“When you have the champ and you have the three belts, it does provide you with some leverage,” Yormark said. “But we’re not there yet. And we haven’t had any conversations. And now that the holidays are over, it’s something that we’ll start focusing on. All of our focus, quite honestly, the last couple of weeks has been around Cotto versus Kirkland. And that’s been our No. 1 priority.”

Not surprisingly, Yormark doesn’t see the outcome of the second fight changing from the first. Ward rose from a second-round knockdown to win a close decision by three scores of 114-113, which many felt was controversial because of the one-sided scoring of the second half of the fight. “I can only repeat what Andre has said, and that is, he did figure him out,” Yormark said. “It took him a couple of rounds but he did figure him out and I think Andre was quoted as saying the next fight could be more of the same of the tail end of the first fight, and I would tend to agree with that.”