When forty nine year old ring legend Bernard Hopkins lost his light heavyweight title to the much younger thirty one year old Sergey Kovalev this past November it begs the question, is it time for Bernard ‘The Executioner’ aka ‘The Alien,’ to finally call it a day and step down and retire from the ring? After all he has been fighting professionally for 26 years and he has been to the top of the mountain several times and he has beaten many fellow world champions along the way including the likes of Roy Jones Junior, Kelly Pavlik, Ronald ‘Winky, Wright,’ Antonio Tarver, Oscar De La Hoya, Felix Trinidad, and, among others, Jean Pascal. The victory over Pascal was incredible enough that he could accomplish such a feat in 2011 at the age of forty six to break George Foreman’s record of having won a world title at the age of forty five let alone for him to still be fighting near the top of his profession as he approaches fifty years old, which he turns this month, because after all he still gave a good account of himself against Kovalev even if he was clearly outpointed. Continue reading
There are some fights that were possible but they never happened. In the case of Joe Frazier verses Ken Norton a little bit of alternative revisionist history is needed to set the stage for the fight to have happened. The following, of course, is fiction and it is my take on how such a fight may have transpired.
It is May 1974 and former heavyweight champion Joe Frazier is in training to fight fellow highly ranked contender Jerry Quarry who had defeated up and coming contenders Earnie Shavers and Ron Lyle the previous year. Frazier, who was fresh off a loss to fellow ex champion Muhammad Ali, knew a win over Quarry would solidify another heavyweight title shot against the man who had brutally taken his title from him, George Foreman. But as luck would have it Quarry, who was prone to cuts, was cut while training and the injury was severe enough to sideline him for the next couple of months. Frazier was told by several promoters and by representatives of the major sanctioning bodies that he had to beat a top ranked contender in order to be considered for another title shot. But the problem was that if Quarry, who fit the bill, was not available, and both Lyle and Shavers who had already been beaten by Quarry had slipped in the rankings, who was available for Frazier to fight? Continue reading