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Ward-Kovalev II: Andre Ward's Media Roundtable

Andre Ward sits down with media memebers to discuss a number of topics leading into his rematch with Sergey Kovalev this weekend.

Andre Ward hosts a media rountable where he fields reporters' questions on his upcoming rematch with Sergey Kovalev while also reflecting on their first fight. Check out some excerpts of what he had to say below along with the full video interview above...

Ward on if he thinks fans want him to slip up and fail because he's been winning for so long:

"You've got to stay away from 'they,' that's the first thing. They will get you in trouble. So you gotta let 'they' be who they are - that element is not gonna change - and half the battle is just understanding what you're dealing with. It's understanding. And in all my getting, I try to get an understanding, and once I got that understanding, then you know how to move the pieces on the board. It's not confusing, I've studied the sport. I've seen how Roy was done. I've seen how Floyd was done. I've seen the Bernard Hopkins of the world, and others. I named those three 'cause those are the three I mainly comes with the game...

"So how do you respond to it? When I was younger, I'd get upset...I'm not doing that, man. My feet are firmly on the ground, I know who I am, I know where I'm trying to go, and I know who's leading/directing my path, and I got a tremendous team around me, so I'ma ley 'they' be 'they' and I'ma just gonna try to continue to be who I am."

On Virgil Hunter wondering why Ward shouldn't retire, considering that he feels boxing doesn't appreciate Ward:

"Well, I mean, you guys gotta realize that, you know, Virgil is obviously my trainer and my godfather, and he has his thoughts and opinions. You know they don't always exactly reflect what I'm feeling and saying, that's kinda how he feels about it, and I respect that. I feel like I get enough appreciation from the right people. You know you not supposed to be appreciated by everybody - that's not a reality. If you doing anything with siginificance, I don't care if you a major company, you gonna have that element that wanna see you fall, that never give you credit. That's part of the game, that means you're doing something significant, it's worth talking about. When I see other fighters speak out against me, without being provoked at all, I understand what that is."

On what he was thinking right before the scorecards were read in the first Kovalev fight:

"I mean if you look at the end of the fight I walked around the ring with my hand raised. You know, I knew it was close, I knew that I had to get out of a deficit, I knew that - you just never know...People tried to make a thing about my reaction and like I knew the fight was close, but it's a fight that I knew like, man, obviously I want it to go my way but its was like he blew me out by 6-7 rounds and I knew 'Oh my God, I got a gift.' Can I not be excited that I just won the light heavyweight championship of the world?! And won it in that fashion?!

"So, again, 'they' are gonna make something out of anything, I can't get involved in that, you know what I mean. But I definitiely knew it was close but I felt like the way we closed it, the last 6-7 rounds, I felt like I won it by a point or two. Definitely."

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