Sergey Kovalev has emerged as a legitimate threat in the light heavyweight division, and he's done so at an advantageous time. The 30-year-old contender knocked out Cornelius White in three rounds last Friday on the NBC Sports Network, and now he's hunting the big game: 48-year-old IBF titlist and living legend Bernard Hopkins.
After his win over White, Kovalev (21-0-1, 19 KO) called out Hopkins (53-6-2, 32 KO) on TV, and is hoping that with Bernard losing his July 13 fight with Karo Murat, he'll be able to land the fight. There's really no doubt that Kovalev is a more interesting opponent for the wily veteran than Murat would be, and Kovalev is white hot at the moment. He's got skills, he's got vicious power, and he's in his prime athletic years.
Hopkins, even at 48, is better than Gabriel Campillo or Cornelius White, both decent contenders that Kovalev has walked over in his last two bouts. And given the state of the light heavyweight division, Kovalev is arguably the most intriguing possible fight for "The Executioner," too.
Adonis Stevenson, for one, might argue that idea, but he's about the only guy who has a case. Hopkins doesn't have many potentially interesting opponents at 175, and he's way too small to be going up to cruiserweight, and he probably isn't able to move down, either. Carl Froch and Eddie Hearn don't sound particularly interested in moving up to face Hopkins.
So is Kovalev the biggest threat to B-Hop? Would you rather see Hopkins face Kovalev or Adonis Stevenson, if you had your pick?