Hopkins Adds to His Legacy

HopknsShumenov_0119The problem with writing an analysis of a Bernard Hopkins fight these days is the repetition. He had hall-of-fame credentials before becoming the oldest man to win a lineal championship in 2011. Now he continues to win and school guys young enough to be his son.

To be fair, Beibut Shumenov (14-2, 9 KO) has a fighting style that is fitting for Hopkins (55-6-2, 32 KO). Shumenov is strong and durable. However he lacks hand speed, and made the fatal mistake of keeping his left hand low throughout the entire bout.

The fight began with Shumenov moving forward yet fighting at a tactical, slow pace and Hopkins picking his spots to counter and move forward as well. Hopkins, the more accurate puncher, began flowing into his rhythm by the middle rounds and the damage from constant right hands and left hooks showed on Shumenov’s face.

The old teacher gave the student a boxing lesson. Hopkins mixed up his attack well. Sometimes he would throw a jab and right hand, but other times he led with the right hand and left hook. The variety of Hopkins’ attack and his slick defensive maneuvers frustrated his younger opponents. Hopkins continued to get under Shumenov’s skin by fearlessly clowning in the ring such as motioning Shumenov to come forward and making expressions at the 2004 Olympian.

The punishment weakened Shumenov to the point where Hopkins scored a rare knockdown by landing a classic 1-2 jab and right cross combination. Shumenov did not appear seriously hurt yet the opportunity for a Hopkins knockout victory was suddenly possible and this brought the crowd to its feet.

Hopkins continued to land flush shots but he seemed to decide that Shumenov was not ready to be taken out and won the last two rounds by continuing to outbox him.

With this win, Hopkins added another page to his legacy by becoming the oldest fighter to unify two titles by winning Shumenov’s WBA title and made the second successful defense of the IBF 175-pound title.

Though he clearly won the fight Hopkins officially won by split decision. Two judges scored the bout 116-111 in his favor and Judge Gustavo Padilla scoring the fight 114-113 for Shumenov.

After the bout, Hopkins called out lineal light heavyweight champion Adonis Stevenson and expressed his goal to become THE light heavyweight champion by defeating Stevenson and earning his titles. Personally, I find the matchup to be a bad one for Hopkins given Stevenson’s athletic abilities and punching power, but this is a man who has proven me as well as the world wrong before so I will never count him out until he is actually counted out.

For Shumenov, his reign is over but considering he is classified as a ‘young 30 year-old’ due to his small number of professional experience he has time to recover from this loss and lesson. As Richard Schaefer, Hopkins’ promoter, said:

“Class  dismissed.”

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Here’s this Week’s Gameplan

Hello everyone and welcome to another post by Arthur Wilson (or in other words HOHOHO or kingarthur11).  I have had some personal issues to fight through so unfortunately I haven’t posting much as of late, but all is well now.

I will be posting a new Mariners Diary tomorrow at the conclusion of their series with the Miami Marlins.  After a strong start that even saw the Mariners hold the top spot in the American League the team has been struggling as of late, falling below .500 for the first time this season.  How will the team respond this week, let’s find out.

The NBA Playoffs also started today and two games are already in the books.  The Brooklyn Nets beat the Toronto Raptors and the Golden State Warriors upset the Los Angeles Clippers to take Game 1 of their respective series.  I will be looking more closely at these teams later tonight and tomorrow, and be posting my reactions as well as making predictions on which teams will move on and which teams will stay home.

Thanks for your time and stay classy everyone!

HOHOHO!

Pacquiao Regains Stature with Decisive Rematch Win

 

hi-res-05b01a679e1abb6e367b7a149d39e2a9_crop_northRematches usually have one of two reasons for being made. Either the first bout was a close fight where either man could be declared the winner or a fight meant to correct a perceived mistake. The rematch between Manny Pacquiao and Tim Bradley fit the latter.

The Filipino superstar got revenge against a largely unpopular decision loss to Bradly (31-1, 12KO) almost two years ago. The scorecards read a 118-110 and 116-110 (twice) to earn Pacquiao (56-6-2, 38KO) a unanimous decision victory.

The fight began even with both men fighting at a fast pace from the beginning. Pacquiao possessed a slight advantage over Bradley in foot speed as he slipped and slide left to right which made Bradley always one step behind as he followed Pacquiao and tried to land his jab and right hand.

Bradley had some success in the middle rounds when he landed some of those haymakers and drove Pacquiao back but the punches did not have the same effect as the punches that Pacquiao threw. When Pacquiao landed, it had a noticeable effect on Bradley. He would clinch and occasionally appear wobbly yet Bradley is not an easy man to knockout.

He survived any bombs Pacquiao threw out but Bradley lost control of the bout during the second half of the fight and Pacquiao used his speed in hands and movement to pick apart Bradley and win rounds.

At the end of twelve rounds, the fight was entertaining but there was a clear winner. Bradley graciously accepted defeat and congratulated the new welterweight titleholder.

For Pacquiao, this redemption victory opens the door for a fifth fight between Juan Manuel Marquez as well as other potential bouts with Mike Alvarado, He-whose-name-is-always-mentioned Floyd Mayweather, and…honestly that seems to be it.

Bradley has unfinished business with newly crowned WBO light welterweight champion Ruslan Provodnikov and he has potential rivals in Kell Brooks, Keith Thurman, and Paulie Malignaggi to name a few. Although he could not decisively beat Pacquiao there is no shame in losing competitively to one of the most accomplished fighters of the past decade.

Maybe this loss will end the nightmare that the win against Pacquiao brought. If that happens, Bradley can call this a victory.