By: Sean Crose
Make no mistake about it, Bernard Hopkins, the legendary former multi division champion, has no problem speaking his mind. And he certainly let his thoughts be known loud and clear in a recent chat with FightHube. “He smashes him,” Hopkins said of Canelo Alvarez’ fight this Cinco de Mayo Weekend with WBA light heavyweight titlist Dmitry Bivol. “Mashed potatoes all over the place. Another smash event. He smashes him.” As far as Hopkins is concerned, people will tune in simply to see if Canelo has lost a step or if he is continuing along his stellar career path.
“That’s all we’re really looking for,” he said, “people that know.” When asked if Bivol’s size advantage and skill wouldn’t come into play this weekend, Hopkins admitted they would “if Canleo didn’t have the attributes, the talent that he has. Yeah. But that’s not the case.” Hopkins believes that the real true challenge to Canelo right now is one Jermall Charlo. “Depending on what weight class. I said it and I won’t back off of it. To me, that’s Canelo’s biggest challenge so far. That fight, sixty-sixty eight. That fight is dangerous for Canelo, to my perspective.” And super lightweight David Benavidez? “He (Canelo) smashes him,” Hopkins claimed.
The brief conversation ultimately turned to a third match between Canelo and Gennady Golovkin, which will likely go down if the 4-1 favorite Canelo bests Bivol on Saturday. “I think you can expect Canelo to be better than he was the second fight,” Hopkins said. “So that doesn’t sound good for GGG…another smash, but it’s a different type of smash.” With that in mind, the controversial nature of the first two fights between Canelo and Golovkin, which ended in a draw and decision for Canelo respectively, leads the rivalry to have an air of unfinished business about it. Still, Golovkin’s age and recent low activity rate add credence to Hopkin’s point.
Hopkin’s, of course, is a man who knows that which of he speaks – that specifically being the fight game. Having won world titles in both the middleweight and light heavyweight divisions, the man defied time by fighting into his fifties in a Hall of Fame career that ended with a record of 67-8. Like Canelo, Hopkins didn’t let an L on his resume stop him from making notable achievements in the sport. As for Canelo himself, he is now unquestionably the most dominant figure in boxing. Although most arguably have him wining this weekend, perhaps it’s worth noting that not all fighters age as well as Hopkins – and that a fighter’s prime, which the Mexican star has appeared to be in recently, can represent a relatively brief period of time.
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