Is Andre Ward trying to avoid a rematch with Sergey Kovalev?
Dec 4, 2016; Oakland, CA, USA; Professional boxer Andre Ward poses during a NFL football game between the Buffalo Bills and the Oakland Raiders at Oakland Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Sergey Kovalev’s representatives have been unable to reach Andre Ward; Ward has threatened retirement.

Andre Ward (31-0, 15 KOs) went into his fight with Sergey Kovalev last year knowing an immediate rematch clause was in place. Now Kovalev’s promoter, Main Events, has been unable to get Ward on the phone to discuss a second meeting.

Kovalev (30-1, 26 KOs) punished Ward in their light heavyweight title unification last November, particularly early. A straight-right in the second round sent Ward to the canvas for the first time in 11 years. Ward eeked out a decision, but some feel Kovalev deserved the victory.

Main Events CEO Kathy Duva claims it’s been radio silence from Ward’s side ever since. His handlers, Roc Nation, have ignored all correspondence.

“Ward’s promoters continue to ignore our requests and letters. Ward is obligated to hold his next fight with Kovalev. Of course, if Ward refuses to fulfill his obligations, Sergey’s career will still move forward and we will continue to pursue fights for him,” Duva told Vasily Konov.

Ward must give Kovalev a rematch before he takes any other fight, according to their initial agreement. He hinted at retirement back in January, a possible side effect of Kovalev’s power. A rematch likely wouldn’t take place before the second-half of 2017, if at all.