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Old 07-23-2007, 09:47 PM   #20
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Default Re: Mavin Hagler Eats Bernard Hopkins

Originally Posted by pjo479
Now I want to make this perfectly clear.
The Bernard Hopkins that we see today, would not have beaten the Marvin Hagler that we all know of.

When I'm looking at this, I'm talking of the Bernard Hopkins that dismantled Tito Trinidad. That Bernard Hopkins was one of the best middleweights in the history of the game.

Marvelous Marvin Hagler and Bernard Hopkins are very much alike, they're hard men.. inside and outside of the squared circle. They both brought a very intimidating presence into the ring, and they both could fight to back up that presence.

But there is one major difference in styles that differentiates them... versatility.

Marvelous Marvin Hagler was a great fighter, but a fighter that relied on 3 things, conditioning, will, and physical strength. It was his goal to press a fight for 15 full rounds until whoever it was that was in front of him was gone. He carried this throughout his career, and he was absolutely brillaint in his work.

However, what would he do when a guy refused to stand with him, a guy that knows how to win, and that wouldn't buy into Hagler's game? Well, we all saw what he'd do, he'd keep trying. Hagler's fight with Sugar Ray Leonard set the blueprint and is the fight that I believe accurately depicts how Bernard Hopkins would have "Executed" Hagler, except in far more emphatic fashion then the much smaller Ray Leonard.

Hopkins is also, like Hagler, a HUGE middleweight. Physically powerful, and bruising. In a matchup of pure strength, this one is about as even as it gets. Many may think Hagler was stronger, but in terms of size and boxing functional strength, he was NOT.

The Hopkins at the time of the Trinidad fight would NOT have thrown a shot here and there, jumping in and out with a shot and looking to grab. He was a guy who put together punches, and found beautiful angles to land crushing shots. (His power was much more devestating a few years back, it has deteriorated with age, even Hopkins himself has admitted this) Lets not disregard the fact that Hopkins, just as Hagler was, has ALWAYS been in absolutely flawless condition.
Being as strong as Hopkins is, he would not have catered to Haglers style. He would have stuck him with a jab from the get go, letting Hagler start to bring the fight to him, and dissecting him with his overrall BETTER SKILLS and well roundedness.

Hagler was tremendous, but Hopkins just has more to work with. Hagler would be chasing Hopkins all night, but unlike the Hopkins we saw vs Eastman (a Hopkins that I like to refer to as slowing down, losing punching power, and the overall tenacity), the prime Bernard Hopkins was an absolutely murderous fighter. He would have shucked in and out (Hopkins is such a quicker fighter then the somewhat methodical Hagler) landing many series of devestating shots and leaving when any resistance was offered up from Hagler.

Certainly Hopkins would take a few shots in the bout, but with Hopkins's jaw of CAST IRON, there is absolutely no way that Hagler would have gotten to him enough to force a stoppage or even to significantly hurt Hopkins in my opinion. He would have chased him hard, he would have pressed the issue, but once Hopkins started Banging him and getting inside and mauling him, not giving Hagler any room, tapping him on the thighs, tangling him up, freeing up an arm and ripping a few uppercuts and short hooks (Hopkins is a perfectionist at this craft), he would gain control of Hagler.

Hopkins was too fast, equally strong, and had MANY MANY more options then Hagler. When Option 1 would fail for Hagler, he would have nothing else to resort to, of course The Marvelous one would try in vein, but it would be futile. Even when he beat Hearns, he had one option, go through all that punishment and do what he does best. Strength, will, and conditioning. Hopkins would NEVER get into that kind of fight with Hagler, and the result would be a hard fought Hopkins decision, potentially even stopping him late. Sugar Ray Leonard pulled it off, and he was nowhere near as strong as Hopkins, Hopkins is catlike quick, and there's no doubt in my mind he could pull off the same gimmick to perfection, except better. Just like he pulled off the gameplan set forth by Oscar De La Hoya on Felix Trinidad better.
No, both Hopkins and Hagler were very versatile fighters.

Hopkins started off as more of an attacking right-hand puncher, but as he got older, became more tactical, and as you've seen the last few years, he picks his spots a lot and has a low workrate.

Hagler is sort of the opposite, whereas he was a boxer-puncher throughout most of his career, but became more of a brawler toward the end of his career, such as the Hearns fights and the late rounds versus Mugabi.

Hagler had heavier hands, a better jab, and was a little more proven when it came to brawling it out with big punchers. He took some big shots from Hearns and Mugabi. He changed his style to be more aggressive against the rangy, terrific boxer in Hearns and outslugged him. He jabbed the hell out of Mugabi, but eventually it was the bodyshots and in-fighting which took it out of The Beast. Hopkins's best brawling performances against big punchers weren't quite as impressive, but B-Hop is a little slicker and quicker than Hagler, IMO. He uses angles very well and is not only extremely crafty, but is also very experienced against southpaws.

I rank Hagler all-time on the MW rankings mainly due to his superior opposition level on the way to the title, but I would actually pick Hopkins to win a close decision head-to-head over Hagler.

Last edited by bhwbj; 03-23-2006 at 04:45 AM.
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