3 More Rounds

Kovalev stops Caparello to setup Hopkins fight

Photo: Rich Graessle/Main Events

Photo: Rich Graessle/Main Events

WBO light heavyweight champ Sergey Kovalev (25-0-1, 23 KOs) made quick work of Aussie challenger Blake Caparello (19-1-1, 6 KOs) but not before suffering a flash knockdown in the opening round.

Kovalev got off to a slow start and after taking a borderline low blow halfway through the first round, Caparello landed a clean left hand to the chin that sent Kovalev backward – that his foot was also being stepped on, knocked him off balance and to the canvas for an official knockdown.

However, Kovalev quickly got to his feet and finished the round well.  In the second,  Kovalev landed a straight right to the body of Caparello that put him on the canvas in pain.  Caparello got up slowly but Kovalev stepped on the gas and battered him against the ropes before going down a second time, resulting in a stoppage.

“I hit him in the liver and felt that he was done so I finished the job,” said Kovalev after the fight.

The win now sets up a November megafight with fellow 175-pound champ Bernard Hopkins, who was at ringside.

“If I knock him out, that would be great, but it’s not my goal,” said Kovalev.

“I always ran to the fire instead of away from the fire,” declared Hopkins, when asked about taking a fight with Kovalev.

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