Sergey Kovalev is now on the comeback trail and it begins at Madison Square Garden.
Kovalev will headline a November 25 HBO card against Vyacheslav Shabranskyy at The Theater at MSG. Not titles or title opportunities will be on the line and it will just be a 10-round light heavyweight bout. The announcement was made during the Srisaket Sor Rungvisai vs. Roman Gonzalez HBO broadcast on September 9. Kovalev, who has lost his last two fights, said he's learned from the two losses and is looking forward to making his Madison Square Garden debut.
"I learned a lot from my fights with Andre Ward," Kovalev said. "When you don't win and when you suffer adversity, it makes you stronger. It also shows you who your real friends are. I feel like I cleaned out my life and now I'm ready to start fresh. I'm very excited to get back in the ring, and fight at Madison Square Garden for the first time, and I'm focused on the future. I'm not looking back."
Kovalev's two losses came against Andre Ward. The first fight had a controversial decision that saw Kovalev lose the unified light heavyweight title to Ward last year. In the rematch earlier this year, Ward scored a decisive TKO win over Kovalev to retain the titles.
Shabranskyy is the current WBC United States (USNBC) Light Heavyweight champion, winning the regional title when he stopped Todd Unthank May back in August. Shabranskyy is 19-1 as a professional boxer, with the lone loss coming from current WBC International Light Heavyweight champion Sullivan Barrera last December.