Will he or won’t he? That’s the question on the minds of die-hard fans of “The Alien,” or, if you prefer, “The Executioner.” Or how about just the oldest man to ever win a world boxing championship? And we mean old. But Bernard Hopkins hasn’t announced his retirement, so the question remains: will he fight again?
The old champion turned 51, that’s right, 51 years of age, this past January, and believe it or not, he’s still not ready to hang ’em up. Hopkins’ last contest was in November of 2014, when he dropped a one-sided decision to Sergey Kovalev, a result which surprised a number of boxing experts who had picked the Philly fighter to extend his win streak over younger, more energetic pugilists. With the exception of a decision loss to Chad Dawson in 2012, it had been quite a run for a man who turned pro back when George Bush Sr. was president, with wins over Kelly Pavlik, Jean Pascal and Tavoris Cloud.
In recent months Hopkins has been vocal about his desire to get in one last match before the sun finally sets on his Hall of Fame career. “My hope and goal is to do one more meaningful fight,” he stated earlier this month. But he also admits that the window of opportunity is closing fast and there doesn’t appear to be too many solid offers on the table.
Hopkins was reportedly looking to face Gennady Golovkin, as insane that may sound to some, but he now says that ship has sailed. GGG is set to face Dominic Wade next month and Hopkins wants a match signed and sealed for as soon as possible. Other opponents discussed include Arthur Abraham and Adonis Stevenson, but Hopkins put those matches in the highly unlikely to impossible category as well.
Perhaps you’re one of those boxing fans who thinks this is all much ado about nothing, since the idea of a 51-year-old Bernard Hopkins fighting Golovkin or Stevenson strikes you as absurd. After all, the laws of physics dictate there are limits to everything and that no man, no matter how vigilant about his diet and exercise regimen, is excused from the ageing process. Perhaps you think that a Hopkins vs Golovkin match could be downright dangerous and that someone had better step in and save Bernard from his own folly before it’s too late.
Well, don’t count Otis or Howard Grant as sharing your outlook. Between the two, you’re talking about national amateur championships, Olympic competition and world professional titles, not to mention the two men behind the resurgence of Lucian Bute and the latter’s excellent showing against James DeGale last June. And these two don’t count out Hopkins for one second.
Not only would they give Bernard an excellent chance of upsetting either Golovkin or Stevenson, they go a step further and in this exclusive video from Manny Montreal, enthusiastically invite “The Alien” to come and prepare for any future big fights at the Grant Brothers Boxing Gym. So spread the word: Otis Grant, who was once slated to face Bernard, and Howard, who doesn’t hesitate to pick him to beat GGG, are ready and willing to help the old guy get ready for one last shot.
Who knows? It could be a perfect fit. Judging from Bute’s return to form, the Grants just might have the secret formula for rejuvenating veteran warriors. And no doubt Montreal fight fans, remembering his battles with Jean Pascal, would welcome back Bernard Hopkins with open arms. Check it out: