Jones-Hopkins 2: Too Late

Roy Jones, Jr. and Bernard Hopkins are undoubtedly two of the best fighters in this generation. Both are future hall-of-famers who have left their indelible mark in the history of the sport. Jones was robbed of a gold medal in the Olympics but he went on to win titles in the middleweight, super middleweight, light heavyweight, and heavyweight divisions. Hopkins on the other hand defended his middleweight title 20 times holding it from 1996 to 2005.

Their first meeting was competitive with Jones getting the win with a close but clear decision. It would have been awesome if they met a few years after that first fight but 17 years after is just a little too long. Jones is now 41 and Hopkins is 45 although Hopkins seems to be the fresher of the two as he has taken care of his body more than any fighter of his age.

The fight rolled out exactly like how many people felt it would. Hopkins would connect more and get away with a decision. The fight had very few bright spots. The most exciting part was the action after Jones decked Hopkins with an illegal punch behind the head. The combatants continued to fire away even after the bell has sounded which prompted the event security to step in the ring.

Sadly though, the best action of this fight didn’t really count as it occurred after the bell. The fight was generally boring. Those who ordered the fight on pay-per-view must have left cheated. In all honesty, their build up was more entertaining than the fight itself. It sure seemed like they were going to take each other’s head off during the press conferences but nothing remotely close to that occurred in the fight.

I sincerely hope that this is the last fight for Jones. He was one of the fighters I was a fan of when I started to follow boxing. He was incredibly good in his prime, with athletic gifts that haven’t been seen in boxing before. But he has to realize that his best days are behind him. He should have quit after the back-to-back knockout losses to Antonio Tarver and Glen Johnson. I’m really worried for the guy’s health. His speech seems slurred and his health could deteriorate even more if he continues to fight.

For Hopkins, it is clear that he could go on fighting. He can still hang with the top guys in his division but he must make it a point to take only marquee fights from now on. No more tune-up fights against tomato cans like Enrique Ornelas. Actually, the only fight out there that makes sense for Hopkins is a fight with Chad Dawson.

I never liked Hopkins (maybe because he knocked out Tito Trinidad, a fighter i really liked). His style isn’t my cup of tea but I respect all that he has accomplished. But if he retires, I’d be happy. He should let other guys take the stage for the growth of the sport.

I’ve read somewhere that Jones did not have a guaranteed purse for this fight and would only get money from the pay-per-view sales. Based on the attendance in that fight (barely 6,000) I don’t think Jones will make a ton of money from this fight.

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