Jean Pascal is not going to make the mistake of having too much respect for the living legend Bernard Hopkins, who the Canadian rising star will make his first WBC Light Heavyweight title defense against in Quebec City, Quebec, to be televised by SHOWTIME.
Pascal, 27, will be boxing the 45-year-old legend in the historic Quebec Colisee on December 19 but he doesn’t quite see the fight on those terms. “I’m not gonna see a legend in the ring, (I’m gonna) see a piece of meat. I’m a pit bull. I’m a dog. And I’m gonna be starvin’.”
Hopkins has tried to put the psychological pressure on him, but Pascal insists that tactic won’t succeed. “I’m fighting – not Bernard Hopkins – I’m also fighting a legend. I’m the young lion. I’m the green guy, the green boxer. I’m not supposed to beat the legend (because) I’m too green for that. So he has all the pressure. He’s trying to put the pressure on me, telling people that I’m the king of the division. It’s true. I’m this and that. But the real truth is, he’s the real legend. And I’m the young lion. I’m going there with no pressure. I have nothing to prove. Nobody knows me in America.”
I asked Jean if by being around Bernard Hopkins so closely for the week-long media tour, if he had learned anything new about Hopkins that he didn’t know before?
“He’s a funny guy. He’s fast. And he’s about to get fucked up. So it’s three F’s in the class because he has the class (playing off Hopkins fight theme of being the older, veteran, learned teacher vs. Pascal as the student).”
Steve Farhood, standing in our cluster, was amused by that answer and asked Pascal to repeat the F’s again. “Funny. He’s fast. And he’s about to get fucked up. Notice three F’s in my class. So he tells the class.”
Pascal also sensed that Hopkins is trying to soften him up mentally. “He’s trying to talk me down to be nice, stuff like that. I don’t get caught up in stuff like that. I have a strong team behind me, they’re like the U.S. Marshals, they’re strong, smart and we’re the best. We believe that we’re the best.”
Pascal will need to be at his best to overcome the intelligence and trickery of one of the most decorated, successful champions in ring history, the ageless wonder Bernard Hopkins.