Photos: Ed Mulholland
By Eric Raskin
If you’ve been struggling throughout the buildup to Sergey Kovalev vs. Andre Ward to find something to separate these two elite champions and make it easier to pick a winner, you didn’t get any help at the official weigh-in. Both fighters tipped the scales at precisely the light heavyweight division limit of 175 pounds, and when they posed face to face for photos afterward, they stood eyeball to eyeball, the exact same height. Following the weigh-in, this 50-50 fight remains every bit as 50-50 as it was an hour before.
“Tomorrow will be Krush Day,” Kovalev declared to a chorus of boos from the pro-Ward crowd at the MGM Grand. (The fight will be across the street at the T-Mobile Arena on Saturday, Nov. 19 live on pay-per-view beginning at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT.) The Russian actually made weight with a hint of room to spare, since he kept his long shorts on over his underwear as he stepped on the scale. As the fighters had their steely-eyed pose down, behind them, trainers John David Jackson and Virgil Hunter appeared to get a bit heated as well. Tensions are peaking as the fight nears. “He don’t like me and I don’t like him,” Ward, who went into a full Hulk Hogan trapezius flex after making weight, bluntly declared of his opponent.
All of the undercard fighters made weight as well: Isaac Chilemba and Oleksandr Gvozdyk both came in at 174¾ (one-quarter pound under the limit); Maurice Hooker weighed 139 pounds to opponent Darleys Perez’s 137½ for their junior welterweight fight; and Curtis Stevens, who declared on the HBO Boxing Podcast earlier in the day that he was going to make weight easily, tipped the scales at 157 to opponent James De La Rosa’s 159¾ for their middleweight bout.