Former two-time champion John David Jackson speaking in Miami, FL (Photo: Hustle Boss)
By Chris Robinson
There’s no denying that former light heavyweight champion Sergey Kovalev had a great run in the sport. Kovalev, a Russian fighter who burst onto the scene due to his great ability to chop opponents down and register brutal highlight-reel knockouts, captured the IBF, WBA, and WBO titles at light heavyweight during his successful march up boxing’s ranks.
It was only when we saw Kovalev face off with two-division world champion, Andre Ward, who is now retired, that we saw him suffer his first defeat. That took place in November of 2016 in Las Vegas, as Kovalev scored a second-round knockdown, only to see Ward escape with a narrow unanimous decision after rallying over the second half of the fight. The two men rematched immediately after, with Ward scoring an 8th round TKO victory.
Kovalev’s peak as a fighter seems to be behind him, however. At 35 years old, Kovalev is coming off of his third defeat, a brutal 7th round TKO vs. Eleider Alvarez in August. The two men are looking to rematch in early 2019, and this will at least give “The Krusher” a chance at reclaiming his title, as well as some glory that has eluded him in recent years.
One man who is no longer in Kovalev’s corner is his former trainer John David Jackson, as the two went their separate ways after the Ward rematch. The relationship appeared to end on a sour note, with Kovalev taking some shots at Jackson in the press, claiming he never learned anything during their time together.
Jackson has recently refuted Kovalev’s claims, and during a recent exclusive with Hustle Boss, he opened up on why their bond as a fighter and trainer fell apart. Jackson held nothing back, citing a lack of discipline from Kovalev, as well him apparently having no respect for any American trainers.
Check out the full interview below for Jackson’s thoughts.
Chris Robinson can be reached at CRobinson@hustleboss.com