At age 48, Bernard Hopkins prepares to step back in the ring in a March 9 bout against unbeaten Tavoris Cloud for Cloud's IBF light heavyweight title.
At age 48, Bernard Hopkins is looking to do the impossible. Or at least what might seem impossible to the average man.
On March 9, “The Executioner” will try to break his own record as the oldest fighter in history to win a world title when he takes on IBF light heavyweight champion Tavoris Cloud at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NY.
Hopkins, who holds a 52-6-2 record with 32 wins by KO, seems to be more than ready for the affair.
“People can say what they want,” Hopkins said in a statement released Tuesday, on his 48th birthday. “I have broken records, quieted doubters and solidified my legacy.”
The Philadelphia native became the oldest to win a major world championship in May 2011 when he took the WBC light heavyweight title from Jean Pascal at the age of 46. Hopkins lost that title this past April in a rematch with Chad Dawson in a 12-round majority decision. The controversial first Hopkins-Dawson bout, in October 2011, had been ruled a no-contest.
However, the 31-year-old Cloud — 17 years younger than his challenger — is speaking like a true young gun.
“This will be the last supper for Bernard Hopkins,” Cloud, who is 24-0 with 19 KOs, said in the statement. “I will retain my IBF light heavyweight world title.”
The only thing that might be greater than the confidence of both fighters is the magnitude of this bout, something that is not lost on promoter Oscar De La Hoya.
“Just when you think you’ve seen it all, Bernard Hopkins continue to amaze me,” The Golden Boy said in the statement. “Tavoris Cloud is a tough test and a proud champion with his aggressive style and power. He’s going to push Bernard like never before.”
Twelve rounds will tell the tale when these two pugilists square off in less than two months. The fight will be live on HBO.