The old man might not have what he did ten years ago, but he's still got a helluva lot, at age 49, and damned sure enough to dominate the main event at the DC Armory on Saturday night, and on Showtime.
Bernard Hopkins aka The Alien was winning with ring generalship, and lead power shots, until he gave the fans a jolt with a knockdown in the 11th on Beibut Shumenov. Shumey stayed aloft to the final bell, and the judges had final say. They gave partial credit to the master, giving Hopkins a SD12 win, by scores of 116-111 (Hopkins), 114-113 (Shumey) and 116-111 (Hopkins). One idiot scored for Shumey, and that man should have his license yanked.
It might be tempting to say that Shumey is limited and was rusty... but what say we give Hopkins a heap of credit, for being able to land lead power shots, repeatedly?
"Where the 15 rounds at?" Hopkins screamed as he waited for the cards to be read.
Hopkins went 186-383 to 124-608 for the loser.
The IBF light heavy champ Hopkins (54-6-2 entering) has been looking ahead, to a clash with Adonis Stevenson. The WBA champ Shumey (14-1 entering; from Kazakhstan) age 30, has been training himself coming into this bout. He had a cut man, but no trainer in his corner.
After, Jim Gray spoke to Hopkins.
Shumey told Gray that...
In the first, it was the worst feel em out round you'll ever see. Shumey jabbed to the body and Hopkins searched for holes.In the second, Hopkins' counter right started picking up. Shumey aimed at the left side of Hopkins' body, with both hands. Trainer Nazeem Richardson told Hopkins not to give away too many rounds as he finds his rhythm.
In the third, Hopkins landed a couple rights, as Shumey kept after the body, with both hands, on the left side of Bernards' body. In the fourth, a counter right, sneaky quick, landed hard on Shumey. Hopkins' reflexes are amazing, in that he can land lead rights. Shumey started with some combos, finally but his bark was louder than his bites.
In the fifth, a lead right by Hopkins awed the crowd. Shumey wasn't throwing to the left side of the body anymore, really, and Hopkins was fully in a rythm.
In the sixth, Hopkins' leaping lead right was working. His counter right once again caused the crowd to murmur, at 2:00. The Philly boxer started having fun, clowned some, as he potshotted.
In the seventh, Hopkins moved when he had to, or wanted to, and clinched to get a breather occasionally. The lead right again landed on the too-slow Shumey. "I wanna turn it up. Boxing smart, I wanna turn it up," Richardson said post-round.
In the eighth, Hopkins scored with a lead left hook. That he could do this, land lead power shots, was simply amazing. In the ninth, Hopkins jabbed, moved, and landed a couple power shots, to again take the round. "Step on the gas," Richardson said.
In the tenth, Hopkins switched, and stood still, and went on the ropes, and worked off of there. Then he pressed forward, smartly showing three different looks in two rounds. "Make him pay with combinations," Richardson said.
In the 11th, a right hand dropped Shumey. The crowd chanted B Hop! A jab, which froze him, and right follow sent him to the mat.
In the 12th, Hopkins pressured Shumey some, but also stayed smart to the final bell. He wasn't going to get caught with something he didn't see. We went to the cards...