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HOPKINS: “I Am The Philly Franchise”

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BERNARD HOPKINS PHILADELPHIA MEDIA WORKOUT QUOTES

“This [surpassing of George Foreman’s record] is a hell of a milestone.  This is something that not any old fighter gets to do, or most athletes from any sport for that matter.  I am glad to be able to represent that at this stage of my career.

“I have been able to reach this milestone because of things I have overcome [in my life] and I am motivated by the legacy I will leave.

“I am already going in a champion.  At the Montreal press conference, Pascal was trying to be cute and he gave me his belts.  I never gave them back, so I have them in my possession. I just have to make it official next Saturday because I don’t think anyone should have a belt unless they win in the ring.

“Fifty percent of me is always going to be 100 percent [of someone else] in today’s world of athletics.  When people look at me, they should think ‘He is not the norm.’

“I don’t know how accidents happen, most accidents aren’t good.  This one [my longevity] is a good accident.

“The only way you can get experience is from the clock.  Time works with some people and against some people.  Fortunately, the clock has worked in my favor.

“The difference between me in my 20’s and me in my 40’s is that I have learned not to waste a lot of energy.  When you are young, you are filled with raw emotions and you want to prove that you are the new young lion in the jungle.  Pascal is a new lion, but I am the old lion.

“We have a lot of healthy things now that we didn’t have years ago.  I get my food at Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods.  Joe Louis didn’t have Trader Joe’s.  Ali didn’t have Whole Foods.  Society is paying attention to what is healthy as compared to what we had years ago and I am taking advantage of that.

“For me, this fight is more about the history than redemption.

“I am the professor and Pascal is the student.  Sometimes the student thinks he knows more than the professor.  Every now and then, you have to show them that because you know a little doesn’t mean you know as much as the teacher.  I think he respects what I have done.  He would be a fool not to.

“Fans can expect drama this time around.  I am going to throw a lot of punches.  I am going to be out of character in the way I fight this fight.  It won’t be the Bernard Hopkins people have seen the last couple of years.

“I am going in there with one objective…to win by any legal boxing means necessary and then get out of there with the record broken and the titles won.

“I have been training in downtown Philadelphia to remind myself that I still have to fight like a hungry man that wants something.  I had to go back to where I started.

“Right now, I am the Philly franchise.  The Flyers are out.  The Sixers are out.  The Phillies are playing, but it is early in the season.  I am the franchise right now and I have delivered more than I have failed.  I am going to bring the championship home.

“When I can no longer perform physically and mentally, then I will know I am ready to leave the sport.  It is the same thing that happens at any job.  You know when it is time to leave.  I have too much pride as a man and too much pride for Philly to embarrass myself by staying in boxing too long.”

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“Dynasty II: Pascal vs. Hopkins” is presented by GroupeYvon Michel and Golden Boy Promotions and sponsored by Casino de Montreal, Videotron and Coors Light.  The 12-round WBC, WBC Diamond and Ring Magazine Light Heavyweight World Championship fight will take place Saturday, May 21 at the Bell Centre in Montreal, Canada and will be televised live on HBO’s World Championship Boxing beginning at 10:00 p.m. ET/7:00 p.m. PT in the United States and distributed live on pay-per-view in Canada on Canal Indigo, Bell TV, Shaw TV, Viewer's Choice and Sasktel in French and English beginning at 7:00 p.m. ET. A 12-round light heavyweight bout between former World Champions Chad Dawson and Adrian Diaconu will also be featured on the telecast.  Dawson vs. Diaconu is presented in association with Gary Shaw Productions and InterBox.

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2015 Fight of the Year – Francisco Vargas vs Takashi Miura

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The WBC World Super Featherweight title bout between Francisco Vargas and Takashi Miura came on one of the biggest boxing stages of 2015, as the bout served as the HBO pay-per-view’s co-main event on November 21st, in support of Miguel Cotto vs Saul Alvarez.

Miura entered the fight with a (29-2-2) record and he was making the fifth defense of his world title, while Vargas entered the fight with an undefeated mark of (22-0-1) in what was his first world title fight. Both men had a reputation for all-out fighting, with Miura especially earning high praise for his title defense in Mexico where he defeated Sergio Thompson in a fiercely contested battle.

The fight started out hotly contested, and the intensity never let up. Vargas seemed to win the first two rounds, but by the fourth round, Miura seemed to pull ahead, scoring a knock-down and fighting with a lot of confidence. After brawling the first four rounds, Miura appeared to settle into a more technical approach. Rounds 5 and 6 saw the pendulum swing back towards Vargas, as he withstood Miura’s rush to open the fifth round and the sixth round saw both men exchanging hard punches.

The big swinging continued, and though Vargas likely edged Miura in rounds 5 and 6, Vargas’ face was cut in at least two spots and Miura started to assert himself again in rounds 7 and 8. Miura was beginning to grow in confidence while it appeared that Vargas was beginning to slow down, and Miura appeared to hurt Vargas at the end of the 8th round.

Vargas turned the tide again at the start of the ninth round, scoring a knock down with an uppercut and a straight right hand that took Miura’s legs and sent him to the canvas. Purely on instinct, Miura got back up and continued to fight, but Vargas was landing frequently and with force. Referee Tony Weeks stepped in to stop the fight at the halfway point of round 9 as Miura was sustaining a barrage of punches.

Miura still had a minute and a half to survive if he was going to get out of the round, and it was clear that he was not going to stop fighting.

A back and forth battle of wills between two world championship level fighters, Takashi Miura versus “El Bandido” Vargas wins the 2015 Fight of the Year.

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Jan 9 in Germany – Feigenbutz and De Carolis To Settle Score

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This coming Saturday, January 9th, the stage is set at the Baden Arena in Offenburg, Germany for a re-match between Vincent Feigenbutz and Giovanni De Carolis. The highly anticipated re-match is set to air on SAT.1 in Germany, and Feigenbutz will once again be defending his GBU and interim WBA World titles at Super Middleweight.

The first meeting between the two was less than three months ago, on October 17th and that meeting saw Feigenbutz controversially edge De Carolis on the judge’s cards by scores of (115-113, 114-113 and 115-113). De Carolis scored a flash knock down in the opening round, and he appeared to outbox Feigenbutz in the early going, but the 20 year old German champion came on in the later rounds.

The first bout is described as one of the most crowd-pleasing bouts of the year in Germany, and De Carolis and many observers felt that the Italian had done enough to win.

De Carolis told German language website RAN.DE that he was more prepared for the re-match, and that due to the arrogance Feigenbutz displayed in the aftermath of the first fight, he was confident that he had won over some of the audience. Though De Carolis fell short of predicting victory, he promised a re-vamped strategy tailored to what he has learned about Feigenbutz, whom he termed immature and inexperienced.

The stage is set for Feigenbutz vs De Carolis 2, this Saturday January 9th in Offenburg, Germany. If you can get to the live event do it, if not you have SAT.1 in Germany airing the fights, and The Boxing Channel right back here for full results.

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2015 Knock Out of the Year – Saul Alvarez KO’s James Kirkland

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On May 9th of 2015, Saul “Canelo” Alvarez delivered a resonant knock-out of James Kirkland on HBO that wins the 2015 KO of the Year.

The knock-out itself came in the third round, after slightly more than two minutes of action. The end came when Alvarez delivered a single, big right hand that caught Kirkland on the jaw and left him flat on his back after spinning to the canvas.Alvarez was clearly the big star heading into the fight. The fight was telecast by HBO for free just one week after the controversial and disappointing Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao fight, and Alvarez was under pressure to deliver the type of finish that people were going to talk about. Kirkland was happy to oblige Alvarez, taking it right to Alvarez from the start. Kirkland’s aggression saw him appear to land blows that troubled the young Mexican in the early going. Alvarez played good defense, and he floored Kirkland in the first round, displaying his power and his technique in knocking down an aggressive opponent.

However, Kirkland kept coming at Alvarez and the fight entered the third round with both men working hard and the feeling that the fight would not go the distance. Kirkland continued to move forward, keeping “Canelo” against the ropes and scoring points with a barrage of punches while looking for an opening.

At around the two minute mark, Alvarez landed an uppercut that sent Kirkland to the canvas again. Kirkland got up, but it was clear that he did not have his legs under him. Kirkland was going to try to survive the round, but Alvarez had an opportunity to close out the fight. The question was would he take it?

Alvarez closed in on Kirkland, putting his opponent’s back to the ropes. Kirkland was hurt, but he was still dangerous, pawing with punches and loading up for one big shot.

But it was the big shot “Canelo” threw that ended the night. Kirkland never saw it coming, as he was loading up with a huge right hand of his own. The right Alvarez threw cracked Kirkland in the jaw, and his eyes went blank. His big right hand whizzed harmlessly over the head of a ducking Alvarez, providing the momentum for the spin that left Kirkland prone on the canvas.

Saul “Canelo” Alvarez went on to defeat Miguel Cotto in his second fight of 2015 and he is clearly one of boxing’s biggest stars heading into 2016. On May 9th Alvarez added another reel to his highlight film when he knocked out James Kirkland with the 2015 “Knock Out of the Year”.

Photo by naoki fukuda

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