Do you ever see that person in real life who acts like it’s the 1970’s? Someone who hasn’t adapted to the modern era? In a way that is Sergey Kovalev and his promoter Kathy Duva. It’s quite embarrassing what’s going on and despite myself blaming Stevenson for the last few years, it’s clear a majority of the blame should be on Sergey Kovalev and Kathy Duva at the moment. I will let you know why:
Essentially a purse bid was organized by the WBC for the Light Heavyweight unification super fight between Kovalev and Stevenson. Stevenson's team attended this purse bid and they had their bid ready. Kovalev and promoter Kathy Duva didn’t attend and they turned this purse bid down.
Now why did they turn this purse bid down? Well Kovalev and Kathy Duva want the fight to be on HBO and they won’t entertain the option of making the move to Showtime. Yes, that is the reason, even after Mayweather and Pacquiao worked out their differences and did a shared broadcast with HBO and Showtime.
The logical thing to do by team Kovalev and Kathy Duva would have been to attend the purse bid, put their teams bid in and if they won, that’s fantastic for Kathy Duva. If they didn’t win, well it’s a big payday for Sergey and Kathy also.
Now why wouldn’t Duva attend the purse bid? Well it’s quite clear. She knew she would have been no chance of competing with Al Haymon (Stevenson's silent minder). So if Duva put in a bid for around $4 million, Haymon and his backers probably would have easily beat that with a HUGE bid. Now that’s not a big deal, it’s actually great for Duva and Kovalev financially. But for their ego, which is huge in this sport, it’s a deal breaker.
So the only reason this super fight isn’t being made is because Duva doesn’t want to be embarrassed by what Haymon can offer. We all blame Haymon for a lot of things, but once again he would have easily given Kovalev and Stevenson their biggest purses to date.
Now we are left with some more mismatches and given Stevenson’s age, we likely won’t see this super fight happen. After blaming Stevenson over the last couple of years, it’s all on team Kovalev now. It's backward thinking and it's wrong to hold back Kovalev from his biggest pay day. Sergey should be pressuring Duva to change this, however he obviously isn't and should be blamed also.