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Boxing’s Ageless Wonder Does It AGAIN!!! Bernard Hopkins Once Again Light Heavyweight Champion At Age 48

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Photo by. Ed Muholland

There’s a reason that many in the sport often refer to Bernard Hopkins as the modern-day Archie Moore.  On Saturday night Hopkins, affectionately known as “The Executionor” aka “B-Hop”, showed us once again why he’s a true master of boxing by defeating Tavoris Cloud by unanimous decision (117-111, 116-112 and 116-112) to win the IBF Lt. Heavyweight title at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.  And by winning the title from Cloud,  Hopkins 48, broke his own record in becoming the oldest boxer to win a major world title, a record he set previously when he defeated Jean Pascal to win the WBC Lt. Heavyweight title in May 2011 at age 46.

Hopkins, who made his pro debut back in 1988, used guile, experience, skill, and intelligence to set the pace early and win by comfortable margin out-boxing and schooling the younger and stronger Cloud, 31.  The slow and tactical pace of the early rounds played right into the hands of Hopkins (53-6-2, 32 KOs) while Cloud (24-1, 19 KOs) quite frankly didn’t take advantage by going to work and exert some wear and tear on the older Hopkins.  After the 4 round Hopkins, a walking and talking boxing encyclopedia, had Cloud solved and went to work using angles, lead combinations, and adept counter punching to pile up the points on Cloud.  WBC and WBA Super Middleweight champion Andre Ward, doing special guest commentary on the fight for HBO, noted Cloud is a heavy right-handed fighter, who doesn’t like movement.  Hopkins saw the same thing and gave Cloud angles all night long, moving away to avoid Cloud’s powerful right hand.  When Cloud cornered Hopkins on the ropes, Hopkins used defense and the ability to fight off the ropes like a combination of Floyd Mayweather and a prime James Toney to nullify whatever advantage the Cloud thought he had.  While Cloud threw more punches, Hopkins was the one who made his shots count.  By round 10, it was Hopkins who was making the fight and had the 12, 000 in attendance chanting “B-Hop, B-Hop, B-Hop” as he closed the show and scored a decisive victory.  While Cloud isn’t the greatest fighter in the world and didn’t necessarily fight the smartest fight, you can’t take away from what Hopkins did.  This was Hopkins moment, his showcase, and his stage to shine.  And shine is what Hopkins did, defying the odds once again and showing how much of a wonder he truly is.

What’s next for the legendary Hopkins?  The Light Heavyweight division isn’t an especially deep or talented, so it’s up in the air at this point.  With that being said, there are some options and attractive fights for Hopkins.  A third fight could be made between Hopkins and WBC Champion Chad Dawson, who beat Hopkins last year.  However, Dawson is coming off a stoppage loss to Super Middleweight king Andre Ward last year, so he has to restore himself.  Other intriguing bouts for Hopkins could be a third bout with Jean Pascal, a unification bout with WBO Champion Nathan Cleverly of Wales, or may be the winner of the May rematch between Carl Froch and Mikkel Kessler.  One thing is for sure, Hopkins has no desire to fight Andre Ward as he told Ward exactly that after the bout to his face.  In what has to be viewed as a sign of respect and mutual admiration between the two, Hopkins emphatically told Ward that a bout between the two will not happen, no matter how much money is offered.

During the interview with Max Kellerman of HBO after the fight, Hopkins said “I’ve got a history of destroying young champions and you never see them again!”  Well, Hopkins took apart another young champion’s dreams Saturday night with his victory over Tavoris Cloud.  Bernard Hopkins is just a marvel who must be appreciated and enjoyed for as long as he continues to fight.  Is Hopkins the fighter that he was 5, 10, 15 years ago?  Absolutely not.  However, as the saying goes, the man preserves like fine wine.   The future Hall of Famer is an athletic wonder that must be cherished.  Get your fill of Bernard Hopkins while you can, because you may never see another boxer, or athlete like him again.

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March 10, 2013 - Posted by | Blog, Boxing | , , , , ,

4 Comments »

  1. click: http://featuresports.wordpress.com/ for another awesome sports blog.

    Comment by featuresports | March 10, 2013 | Reply

    • I’ll make sure to check it out, Thanks.

      Comment by BrotherJR | March 11, 2013 | Reply

  2. Nice article, describing perfectly the dissection of a young champion by this generation’s ageless phenomenon. A much easier fight than I ever dreamed possible, so easy that he didn’t even have to employ all his bag of tricks. It reminded me of the Pavlik fight, only he moved more last night, all the more impressive given that that fight was four-and-a-half years ago. No wrestling, no holding, and nothing heard from the critics that insisted he’d have to make it an “ugly fight” to win. Bernard Hopkins never ceases to amaze us, he turned back the clock again, and looked twenty-eight and not forty-eight………..

    Comment by Dave Murphy | March 10, 2013 | Reply

    • Thanks for the compliments Dave. To me, Pavlik was a better opponent that Cloud skill-wise. I was worried how would Hopkins react to such a big, strong, hard hitting opponent that would come forward, be aggressive and rough him up. B-Hop hadn’t faced a Light Heavy with that combination of size, strength and power. However, Hopkins completely neutralized Cloud and the fight wasn’t tough at all for Hopkins who exposed Cloud for the one dimensional and limited fighter he is. Hopkins once again showed his mastery against Cloud and made folks forget how his loss to Chad Dawson last year. There’s two words to describe Bernard Hopkins… LIVING LEGEND!

      Comment by BrotherJR | March 11, 2013 | Reply


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