Has there been a smarter fighter to grace the sweet science in the modern era than Bernard Hopkins? The almost-45-year old hitter showed his wisdom yet again with his choice of limited but game Enrique Ornelas as the foe who would give him some rounds, and keep him sharp as he counted down to a rematch with Roy Jones. At the Liacouras Center at Temple University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on Wednesday night, Hopkins fought his typical smart, focused style, and exited with a unanimous decision. The wily one's choice of Ornelas, a pugilist of limited power and agility, contrasted mightily with Jones' choice of Danny Green in his stay-busy bout. Green's pop overwhelmed Jones last night, and so this event will stand as a warmup for a Hopkins, but not for the foe he'd planned on taking on. Or…maybe it would be…
There were no knockdowns, but that doesn't mean Hopkins didn't let Ornelas know that he isn't the average 44-year old. The judges had it 118-110, 120-109 and 119-109, and the winner enjoyed a hug from notorious QB Michael Vick after he heard the good news.
Postbout, Hopkins spoke to Wally Matthews. He left the door open for a fight with Jones, saying Jones was the victim of a quick stoppage. “Everybody know what happens when you go over to Europe,” he said. Could he still fight Jones? “Oh, yeah, definitely. Roy Jones Junior lost on his feet, not on his back. A knockout and a TKO is totally different. I saw more of them miss than more of them hit. It was more of a flurry..The man (Green) was in his hometown.”
You agree, TSS U? Is there still a market for Hopkins-Jones II? I'm thinking no, big time. Roy is damaged goods, seems like.
Hopkins (49-5-1, with 32 wins by KO; age 44) weighed 175 pounds, while Ornelas (29-5, 19 wins by KO coming in; from Mexico; age 29) was 172 1/2 pounds.
Versus televised the bout, which was promoted by Golden Boy East. They also showed a tape of the Roy Jones-Danny Green bout, which took place yesterday in Australia.
Hopkins is significantly lighter on his feet than Jones at this juncture, and it didn't look like he was the senior slugger in there in the first. Both fighters weren't afraid to clinch in the second. Hopkins worked from the outside, then did some inside work, and blunted return fire by lokcing up Ornelas, the half brother of Librado Andrade, who was kayoed by Lucian Bute a week ago. Ornelas looked to be first; it wasn't like he was letting Hopkins steamroll him. He bobbed and weaved and then hoped to land a power right, but Hopkins is equipped with radar, and sonar…he sees everything coming, and makes sure he doesn't get hit flush. Ornelas nailed Hopkins with a tight right in the fourth, and we noted that his hand speed was a bit better than we'd been lead to believe. His jab, though, wasn't a factor early on. Hopkins came out more fiery in the fifth. He advanced more, but Ornelas wasn't flustered. He hit Hopkins with a clipping left as Bernard closed the gap with a minute to go in the fifth. The ultra vet started to work the body a bit more, a wise move as Ornelas was showing a bit more than had been advertised.
The punch volume from both men was about equal but accuracy was the difference. Hopkins' launches weren't wasted. Hopkins did damage in the sixth, upstairs and down, and in the seventh. His right uppercut became a favorite weapon by the eighth. He was in firm, firm control in the ninth, utterly confident that he had Ornelas by the short and curlies. As usual, Hopkins let the man come to him, and tagged him coming in repeatedly in the tenth. Ornelas hung tough, earning his check. A right lead in the 11th snapped Ornelas' head back, and that was just one of several hard knocks that the underdog absorbed. Hopkins let it all hang out to start the 12th. A clash of heads hurt Ornelas' left eye, but he played out the string. We'd go to the cards.