Re: Bernard Hopkins vs Charley Burley
I agree completely that experience is a key ingredient in craft and skill. However, boxing is also a physical sport, and the decline of age is often hurried by miles on the clock and ring wars with competitive adversaries.
The old timers tested themselves more often against better competition often in less than ideal circumstances -- it should be reasonable to assume that wear and tear is a natural consequence. Even in todays environment we see fighters in their twenties deteriorate, although I do admit that performance enhancing drugs and more prevalent dehydration is partly to blame.
But anyone after 100 or so fights should experience a physical drop-off, and there is a cut-off point where that matters more than in-ring experience.