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John David Jackson reponds to story of Gennady Golovkin KO'ing Sergey Kovalev in sparring

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Trainer John David Jackson clarifies rumors of Golovkin knocking out Kovalev during a sparring session.

The rumor mill has flared up this week with talk about a sparring session between Gennady Golovkin and Sergey Kovalev where Golovkin reportedly KO'ed Kovalev on a body shot. If I'm not mistaken, this sparring session supposedly took place a couple of years ago when Kovalev used to train at Abel Sanchez's gym, but somehow has become a hot topic of discussion recently.

When Marcos Villegas of FightHub caught up with Kovalev's trainer John David Jackson to get his reaction to the story, here's what Jackson had to say:

"Sergey and I, we talked about it, and he said it was like one of the first days he got back in the gym and he was terribly out of shape and he got caught with a shot and he wasn't ready for it.

"They're friends and he said he doesn't like sparring with Triple G because he has to really try to hurt him [to keep him off of him]. He said 'I don't want to hurt my friend.' He said Abel Sanchez wanted to make a war out of it and he said 'I don't want to make a war, that's my friend, why should I have a sparring session and make a war out of it?' [Kovalev] said it's not about that but [Sanchez] wants to have a war and we're friends and we're just trying to work with each other.

"But [Kovalev] wasn't hurt. It was just a shot he got caught win, first day in the gym, and it surprised him. That's all. It wasn't like he was really hurt bad. I understand that, I've seen that happen a lot of times in the gym. But he said [Golovkin's] definitely a tough guy, he said 'man, I didn't want to hurt him because I got to hurt hum to keep him off of me.' He said 'I don't want to do that, I don't want to make a war out of it,' and that's the only reason he said he wouldn't spar with him."