MONTREAL -- They are two fighters who spent their primes traversing parallel paths. Bernard Hopkins and Roy Jones were the cream of the crop in the 1990s, dominating the middleweight (Hopkins) and super middleweight/light heavyweight (Jones) divisions. But as they pushed past 30 and the speed and reflexes started to fade, their careers veered in decidedly different directions. Hopkins and Jones fought on the same night last weekend, two fighters in two countries going to work under entirely different circumstances.
The record will reflect that 46-year-old Bernard Hopkins became the oldest world champion in boxing history Saturday night, thoroughly dominating Jean Pascal for the light heavyweight title in a unanimous decision.
NEW YORK -- It takes a lot to shock Bernard Hopkins. You develop a thick skin when you have been fighting since the Reagan administration. Over the last 23 years Hopkins has had opponents insult friends and family members, been taunted with the foulest of language while fighting on foreign soil and been called over the hill more times than he can count.
Sergio Mora has experienced plenty of highs in boxing. There was his stint on The Contender, the NBC reality show that launched Mora into the mainstream (and made him $1 million) in 2005 when he defeated Peter Manfredo on national television. Three years later, Mora won a world title by stunning junior middleweight champion Vernon Forrest.
QUEBEC CITY, Quebec -- It was just past midnight on Saturday night when Bernard Hopkins stepped on the dais, lower lip swollen, beads of sweat accumulating on his face. He had just gone 12 rounds with Jean Pascal, the WBC light heavyweight champion and a man 18 years Hopkins junior. And he was ready to go a few more. As Hopkins started to address the media a handful of hecklers who had invaded the press conference began to jeer him.
QUEBEC CITY, Quebec -- La Cage Aux Sports gives off an air of familiarity, an near perfect Dave & Busters-meets-T.G.I. Friday's sports bar blend. It is replete with the requisite flat-screen TV's and memorabilia, with American music pumped through speakers that are propped up all over the warehouse-sized building.