Originally Posted by dan-b
Great post. I actually meant to mention the Joppy beatdown as an exception to the transition. I think Hopkins genuinely disliked Joppy for some reason & took pleasure in dishing out a rather severe beating.
I find it interesting you talking about him having two primes because I could even make an argument for him never having a prime so to speak. Hopkins has had quite a unique career in many ways, infact, I think he's quite a unique guy. The mental strength & will to win stem from a deep seeded need to prove himself.
I must make a startling confession & suggest maybe, just maybe I have let emotion cloud my judgement with this up & coming bout & it's not something I normally let happen. I think I like the Hopkins story as much as I do his fights & career. He's done things the hard way & if there were more champions like him boxing would be better off. I don't mean with his style but I mean guys who defend their unified crown with their life. He was middleweight champ, no question.
I guess I'm hoping for a romantic send off for Hopkins with one last show of defiance in the face of indominable adversity. Personally, win or lose, I hope this is Bernards last fight. I don't need to see a much belated rematch with Jones. This would be it, the big send off. Nothing could top it.
Yes, the best way to sum up Hopkins in a short sense is enigma. And yes, its almost impossible I think not to get a little biased and emotional in regards to ones favourite fighter. Credit must go to Hopkins for taking this fight and even I suppose this time around, pushing for it. I think he knows how fondly he will remembered in history should he have alongside the 10 year long middleweight reign and a lightheavyweight reign, a victory over the most decorated super middleweight of all time. I believe he realises that this fight is a big risk, as it always has been, but now unlike 2002 it has much more reward value as well. He definetly thinks he can win of course but from his perspective, the fight makes so much more sense now than it did then.
Im no Hopkins fan thats for sure. I respect his accomplishments in the ring, even if I do believe that as good as they are, they get somewhat overrated by ESB and the wider boxing community. Some of the things he has said in the past, even though I don't really think he has meant it have not endeared him to me. Nonetheless, as a boxing fan it saddens me if great fighters go out on a whimper. Your right, no one needs to see a belated RJJ rematch particularly given how far gone Jones is. This is the big one, the last battle, something that would signficantly add to his legacy should he win and not something that would profoundly affect it should he lose. Win, lose or draw I believe Bernard Hopkins should walk away after this comfortable in the knowledge that he has secured a legacy that will see boxing historians look back fondly on his achievements.
P.S. I should also add your point about Hopkins not having a prime of sorts, could be true. One might say he has simply been equally as good but different in each of the stages we highlighted.