Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev regained his WBO Light Heavyweight World Title in classic Krusher fashion with a second round stoppage of Vyacheslav Shabranskyy at the Theater at Madison Square Garden and live on HBO World Championship Boxing.
Kovalev came out of the gates swinging, knocking down Shabranskyy twice in the first round. The second round continued with more hard shots from The Krusher and a third knockdown. Finally, at 2:36 of the second round, the referee called a halt to the action and Kovalev was named the new WBO champ.
The punch stats clearly favor Kovalev, who connected for 50 of 113 punch attempts (44%) compared to 16 of 71 for Shabranskyy (23%). The Krusher also landed 62% of his power punches (36 of 58), compared to 30% (8 of 27) for Shabranskyy. Finally, for jabs Sergey landed 25% (14 of 55) and Shabranskyy landed 18% (8 of 44).
After the fight Kovalev said, “I did it and worked very hard to get to champion status. My brain, mentally, my conditioning, my body – I’m back. It’s my goal to be the best in this division. I am here, I love boxing, I love to make great fights. This makes boxing interesting. We can make good fights for boxing fans, and make boxing history. Let’s find out who is the best. Chickenson is on my list.This is very good for boxing. Let’s do it.”
All photos by Marilyn Paulino/RBRBoxing