Bernard Hopkins, Sergey Kovalev on weight for Saturday’s showdown

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Bernard Hopkins, left, and Sergey Kovalev engage each other in the traditional staredown after making weight Friday in Atlantic City/Photo courtesy of Hogan Photos, Golden Boy Promotions

 

Bernard Hopkins and Sergey Kovalev on Friday both made weight for their light heavyweight title-unification bout Saturday at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City (on HBO).

Hopkins weighed in at 173 1/2 pounds, Kovalev at 174 1/2. The limit is 175.

Hopkins, 49, is 55-6-2 with 32 knockouts. Kovalev, 31, is 25-0-1 with 23 knockouts.

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Bernard Hopkins, Sergey Kovalev to tangle in Atlantic City on Nov. 8

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Bernard Hopkins/Photo courtesy of Golden Boy Promotions

The site has been set for the Nov. 8 light heavyweight title-unification fight between Bernard Hopkins and Sergey Kovalev, and the winner is Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, Golden Boy Promotions has announced.

Ageless wonder Hopkins, 49, of Philadelphia, holds two of the four major belts. Kovalev, of Russia, has one. Their bout – staged by Golden Boy Promotions along with Main Events Inc. – will be televised by HBO.

“Atlantic City is a second home to me,” said Hopkins, who will be 50 on Jan. 15. “Some of my most memorable victories and greatest accomplishments of my career have taken place there, including my fights against Antonio Tarver and Kelly Pavlik.”

Hopkins is 55-6-2 with 32 knockouts. He has not had a knockout victory in 10 years, or since he stopped Oscar De La Hoya in the ninth round in September 2004 in Las Vegas.

Kovalev, on the other hand, has been a wrecking machine. He is 25-0-1 with 23 knockouts. He has six first-round knockouts, 10 in the second round.

“I am happy to be back in Atlantic City,” said Kovalev, 31. “This is my third time fighting here, but this is the most special because this time I am facing the legendary Bernard Hopkins.”

 

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Bernard Hopkins, 49, looks forward to next challenge – Sergey Kovalev

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Bernard Hopkins/Photo courtesy of Golden Boy Promotions

 

Bernard Hopkins is 49 and will be 50 on Jan. 15. Before that happens he’ll be facing yet another challenge in a long line of them. Although the actual date and site have yet to be determined, Hopkins will put his two light heavyweight championship belts on the line against hard-hitting Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev of Russia in a title-unification bout in November in either Atlantic City or New York City (on HBO).

“Everything I do at this point in my career affects my legacy,” said Hopkins, who is 55-6-2 with 32 knockouts. “I’ve set and broken many records, but becoming the oldest undisputed light heavyweight world champion is the goal and Kovalev stands in the way of that goal. He’s another young, hungry fighter and just like the ones that came before him, he will leave the ring beltless.

Hopkins is off just a bit in this statement. He will not be undisputed champion if he beats Kovalev. Hopkins has two of the four major belts, Kovalev has one. Adonis Stevenson has the other one, which means Hopkins would only have three of the four belts with a victory, and that would not quite make him undisputed champion.

That said, Hopkins should be applauded for taking on a killer like Kovalev, who is 25-0-1 with 23 knockouts and is coming off a second-round TKO of Blake Caparello on Saturday in Atlantic City.

“I respect Bernard Hopkins for taking this fight,” Kovalev, 31, said. “When I came to America, it was dream to fight the best and now I am fighting, I have my chance. He says he is alien. He punch, I punch, then we see who is gonna go to Mars.”

 

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Report: Bernard Hopkins could next take on Sergey Kovalev

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Bernard Hopkins/Photo courtesy of Golden Boy Promotions

Providing Sergey Kovalev successfully defends his light heavyweight title Saturday night against Blake Caparello at Revel Resort in Atlantic City (on HBO), Kovalev will next take on fellow champion Bernard Hopkins in a title-unification bout sometime in November in either Atlantic City or New York City, according to reports out of several outlets.

Hopkins (55-6-2, 32 KOs) is 49 and will be 50 Jan. 15. The hard-hitting Kovalev (24-0-1, 22 KOs), of Russia, is 31.

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Bernard Hopkins beats Beibut Shumenov to unify light heavyweight division

Bernard Hopkins on Saturday won a split-decision over Beibut Shumenov of Kazakhstan in a light heavyweight title-unification bout at DC Armory in Washington D.C.

Two judges – Dave Moretti and Jerry Roth – had Hopkins winning 116-111. The third judge – Gustavo Padilla – somehow gave it to Shumenov 114-113.

Hopkins, 49, is now 55-6-2 with 32 knockouts. Shumenov, 30, is 14-

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Shawn Porter to make first defense against Paulie Malignaggi in Washington D.C.

Shawn “Showtime” Porter earned his first shot at a major title five years and two months after turning pro. Once he got it, he won the championship by defeating Devon Alexander via unanimous decision in December in Brooklyn.

Now that he has the belt, he has no intention of letting it go. He will make his first defense on April 19 when he squares off with former champion Paulie Malignaggi at DC Armory in Washington D.C. (on Showtime).

“I fought hard to get this title,” said Porter, 26, of Akron, Ohio. “Paulie says he wants it, but is he willing to go through me to get it?”

Porter (23-0-1, 14 KOs) then took a shot at the light-hitting Malignaggi.

“Fighting Malignaggi is like fighting Alexander; they don’t have the strength or power to keep me away,” Porter said. “And I will steamroll Paulie on my way to victory April 19.”

Alexander has a knockout ratio of 51.8 percent, which is much higher than that of Malignaggi, whose record of 33-5 with seven knockouts computes to a knockout ratio of just 18.4 percent.

“I’m excited to be back in a title fight so soon after my win over Zab Judah,” said Malignaggi, who defeated former champion Judah via unanimous decision in December in Brooklyn. “I will become a three-time world champion on April 19. Porter is a good fighter and I’m sure he’ll be a champion again in the future, but he doesn’t have the tools or experience to beat me.”

This will be the main undercard fight to the light heavyweight title-unification bout between champion Bernard Hopkins and Beibut Shumenov.

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Bernard Hopkins retains title in impressive fashion with win over Karo Murat

Bernard Hopkins, 48, retained his light heavyweight title with a convincing unanimous-decision victory over Karo Murat of Germany on Saturday night at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City.

Hopkins won by scores of 117-111 (Benoit Roussel), 119-110 (Julie Lederman) and 119-110 (Joseph Pasquale). The cards of Lederman and Pasquale seemed a bit off the mark as Murat seemed to deserve better than a nine-point deficit.

The excitement in a Hopkins fight has waned as the years have gone by, but this was very action-packed at times, particularly in the middle rounds when there were several  toe-to-toe exchanges.

Murat was cut twice over the left eye.

Hopkins (54-6-2) recently changed his nickname from “The Executioner” to “The Alien” and he entered the ring wearing a green alien outfit complete with mask. In the fifth round, he kissed Murat on the back of the head when Murat got turned around during a clinch.

Murat (25-2-1), who is 30, was later deducted a point for hitting on the break.

 

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One short Bernard Hopkins quote says a lot about the ageless wonder

Bernard Hopkins and others Wednesday played host to the final news conference for Hopkins’ light heavyweight title defense Saturday against Karo Murat of Germany at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City (on Showtime).

During the proceedings, Hopkins, 48, had many things to say. But one short line was perhaps the best of his dialogue.

“Saying, ‘I’m getting old,’ is getting old,” he said.

When Hopkins (53-6-2, 32 KOs) steps into the ring Saturday, he’ll be less than three months away from his 49th birthday, which is Jan. 15.

Murat, 30, is 25-1-1 with 15 knockouts. He has never fought in the U.S.

“It’s the first time for me to ever be in the United States,” Murat said. “It was (a) dream of mine to come and actually fight one day here, particularly against someone like Bernard Hopkins.”

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It’s understandable that Bernard Hopkins won’t pick a winner for Mayweather-Alvarez

Ageless light heavyweight champion Bernard Hopkins is in a tough spot. He fights for Golden Boy Promotions, so he might feel almost obligated to pick stablemate Saul “Canelo” Alvarez to beat Floyd Mayweather Jr. in their junior middleweight title fight Saturday at MGM Grand in Las Vegas (on Showtime pay–per-view).

Then again, he might want to pick Mayweather because he is favored and most think he’ll win. Well, Hopkins took the easy way out, and that’s understandable.

“This fight is 50-50,” Hopkins said. “It can go either way. Floyd has speed and wisdom. ‘Canelo’ is strong and big. This is a massive fight and the outcome will impact both of their careers in a major way.”

Hopkins, 48, will defend his title against Karo Murat on Oct. 26 at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City (on Showtime).

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