BERNARD HOPKINS vs. CHAD DAWSON
World Light Heavyweight Championship
Saturday, October 15, 2011
From STAPLES Center in Los Angeles, CA
Presented Live by HBO Pay-Per-View Beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT
By Bert Randolph Sugar with Steve Small
STRENGTHS OF BOTH FIGHTERS
BERNARD HOPKINS – (52-5-2, 32 KOs)
· As a forty-ish “Methuselah,” Hopkins is one of the ageless wonders of Sports–not just the Boxing—World.
· A classic “old school “ fighter, Hopkins combines savvy and slickness willing to do anything and everything to win.
· While possessing one-punch knockout, Hopkins punches hard with both hands, to the body where he often hooks over and under with his left, which tends to wear down his opponents.
CHAD DAWSON – (30-1, 17 KOs)
· Tall lefty with fast hands and good combination puncher.
· Excellent stamina, accustomed to fighting at a max pace for full 12 rounds.
· Has size and skills to outwork Hopkins.
WEAKNESSES OF BOTH FIGHTERS
· At an age when most boxers are home in bed listening to their bones mend, Hopkins has yet to show signs of aging, which is somewhat akin to a watched pot, never coming to a boil. But it could happen against a strong, younger Dawson.
· Sometimes Hopkins is a little slow to set-up and get his punches off.
· Dawson does not have a lot of power, relying more on combinations and wearing opponents down.
· Dawson tends to lean away from his opponent’s right hands–a dangerous move because he tends to step forward when he throws his right, extending it.
· Dawson tends to move straight back sometimes standing in front of his opponent instead of moving away.
WHAT EACH MUST DO TO WIN
· Hopkins’ game is inside. Dawson has never faced anyone with the inside fighting abilities possessed by Hopkins.
· Dawson tries to lean away from opponents rights. This could prove to be extremely dangerous for Dawson inasmuch as Hopkins tends to step forward when he throws his right.
· Hopkins has shown a tendency to pace himself, sometimes fighting in spurts. He must give a stronger performance against a stronger opponent.
· Dawson must step-in and shoot his combinations then slide sideway away from Hopkins (ref. see Jean Pascal early rounds against Hopkins.)
· Dawson must fight on the outside and not get into an inside war.
· Dawson must alternate moving to his right and then his heft and stay off the ropes, keeping Hopkins in the middle of the ring.