Kovalev vs Yarde odds: Legit or understated?

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When fearsome WBO Light Heavyweight Champion Sergey Kovalev faces Anthony Yarde on August 24, most casual fans will probably snub their noses.


Anthony who?

Easy prey for the Krusher, right?

Maybe and maybe not; But the latest Kovalev vs Yarde odds represents the tone of boxing insiders.

Per Bovada (7/23), the champion is a -240 favorite while his British challenger sits at +190. Hence, a successful $240 wager on Kovalev would yield $100 while a successful $100 bet on Yarde would generate $190.

Yes, Kovalev is a solid favorite but Yarde is far from an overwhelming underdog.

So, how do the odds stack up with Kovalev vs Alvarez I?

When Eleider Alavrez delivered his stunning knockout upset of Krusher last August, the former was a +400 underdog with the champ positioned at a comfy -600.

The betting line for Kovalev vs Yarde is much tighter. And don't forget, had Kovalev's first bout with Alavrez taken place in Russia, the line would have been even wider.

Anthony Yarde is not well known outside of his native England but the world shouldn't dismiss his chances yet. After all, he's 18-0, 17 KO.

Even British light heavyweight Lyndon Arthur (16-5, 12 KO) likes his rival's channces.

“Yarde is a very hard puncher and has a chance of knocking him [Kovalev] out, but we are still waiting to see him get hit at that level," Arthur told BoxingScene.com.

“I think he has a good chance, but it isn’t just Kovalev. Boxing there in Russia is a lot different to being in London where there are home comforts.

“Kovalev is very good and it’s a case of what is left in him.”

Ripe for the Taking?
Kovalev has lost 3 of his last 6 and was stopped in two of those fights. Of course, there's no shame in dropping two contests to Andre Ward, especially since the first could gone either way or been scored a draw. But, have those losses softened Krusher psychologically? Sure, he won the rematch against Alvarez and looked great adopting a different style but Sergey was more "thit-and-move technician" than "Krusher."

Big Step Up
If you're looking for reasons Yarde will be no match for Sergey, you don't have to look far. The champion was dynamic in regaining his title from Eleider Alvarez in January.

Moreover, Kovalev boasts much, much deeper amateur and pro pedigrees. 

The challenger had a mere 12 amateur bouts and has yet to face anyone of note as a pro.

Are you sure you want this fight right now, Anthony?

"I think it [facing Kovalev] can happen this year," Yarde told ESPN.

"I'm mandatory challenger now, which is a fantastic position to be in especially with someone with my background of only 12 amateur fights before turning professional [in May 2015]. That's motivating me and showing me the level I'm at now.

"I was offered the Kovalev fight in 2018 but my manager and promoter agreed it wasn't the right time for me to be challenging for a world title then.

"I needed a few more tuneup fights, learning fights, and I'm fine with that."

"There are still some questions to be answered with my experience. I'm a fighter, I will fight anyone, and I feel like I'm ready. It's in my nature to be ready to fight anybody, but my promoter [Frank Warren] is trying to steer my career in the best possible way."

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