Just to be clear: I'm not trying to denigrate Hagler's reign. He dominated one of the traditionally most stacked and prestigous divisions for a decade, and that means a hell of a lot to me. I'm merely giving the same credit to Hopkins' time at MW.
You can always argue "but he was probably a bit better than him, and he was less of a natural MW and further past his prime than him" etc, etc. But that's a pretty pointless discussion to me (even though I have indulged in it pretty freely here
) - over a decade there's bound to be sufficient quality coming through to prove you're a great as long as you accept the challenge. Hopkins did, and passed it until he was finally beaten when 40.
That makes for one of the greatest MWs in my book.