My interview with Hopkins on Oscar

Bernard talked for well over an hour on the conference call. I know it's boxing, but since this is such a huge fight I just wanted to share it with the UG here.

(click on the "part i" link to read the first installment).

Jason does awesome, awesome work every time out. I highly recommend taking the time to read anything he writes. As a subscriber to Maxboxing, there are a few things that I'm unhappy with, but Jason's work (especially the round-by-round coverage for fights I don't get) is definitely not one of them. Keep it up man.

What every one can expect to hear September 18:...........................And still undisputed middle weight champion of the world.......Bernard " The Executioner" Hopkins........

I'm betting on a KO within eight.

Oscar is a great champion, but I believe he has taken on more than he can handle in moving up to fight Hopkins.

The only 160lb or less fighter I see having a shot defeating Hopkins right now is Winky wright.

I would like to see that fight after Hopkins beats Oscar, and Winky beats up Mosley again.

Winky is the best Jr Middle Weight fighter in the world, and the Only fighter 160 and under with a serious shot at beating Hopkins right now.

Winky would still be the under dog, but he's got good defence and great skill's.

"I know it's boxing, but since this is such a huge fight I just wanted to share it with the UG here."

You don't have to make excuses for bringing boxing to the UG. Christ, every other thread here is about BJJ, why can't we talk about boxing? Anyway, great interview as usual. You're a real pro in this buisness of pretenders!

Oscar will be KO'd into retirement

I agree. This will be the first time Oscar is KOed.

Great Interview Jason! I have been spening time interviewing boxing
legends as well lately. I checked out your website and it looks great.
Nice work.

My sight is being reworked right now, but will be up in a few weeks. It
will have some on this documentary that I am doing.


bows humbly to John Kellet, Pupa and Lynn, then scuttles off the keyboard to punch out another article

Bernard will be repping Philly when he executes Oscar.

It will be Hopkins-Trinidad all over again.

I been thinking about this fight for the last two months, and watching about one fight a day of each of theirs' that I feel could be applicable (that is, something resembling a factor they will face Sept 18).

Here's what I got so far:

1: The first five round of Vargas-ODLH were the PERFECT blueprint of how to close the gap on Oscar and fight him in close. Vargas was doing damned good but then he gassed.

2: Hopkins hasn't been hit with a clean two or three punch combination in years. Single shots, yes, but the guy never gets caught napping. That's pretty amazing. His defense as an aggressor is very simiilar to prime Julio Cesar Chavez, who could move in on a dude and still slip, block, and avoid punches just enough to take the mojo off of them.

3: "Burn rate" is going to be the key driver in this fight, assuming Oscar boxes, Hopkins pressures. Oscar always says he's in great shape before every fight, then makes excuses afterwards. I don't know why, but he does.

Anyways, after the conference call it's obvious that Hopkins is at least SAYING he's going to try and burn DLH out (remember, he never tipped his hand he was gonna box Tito. We all we were sure it'd be a foul-marred slugfest). Hopkins would have no payoff in trying to outbox DLH as an overall strategy, though he could use that in spots like a changeup to keep ODLH off-balance.

Basically, Oscar burned out against Mosley, Tito, didn't vs. Vargas (Fernando kind of burned out instead). You can give him the benefit of the doubt and throw out Sturm, as Oscar seemed like he was banking everything on an early knockout. But basically, Oscar burned out against Mosley with a decent body attack from Shane, not a lot of constant forward pressure -- the reason he burned out vs. Tito was simple, because he moved more than any fighter I've ever seen without fully running (a la Junior Witter-Zab). ODLH-Tito remains the only fight I've ever seen where the first clinch didn't happen until the 10th or 11th round.

That said, Hopkins ALWAYS clinches when he fights boxers. He ALWAYS throws in the rough stuff. He ALWAYS forces fights on his terms. Oscar can't hurt him outside of a perfect punch, and is gonna have to be using his legs like a motherfucker if he wants to flit in and out. And that's not even guaranteeing he can score effectively without getting hurt.

I give ODLH a lot of props for taking this fight. But Hopkins is mentally ready and has been way more impressive against bigger, stronger, and tougher people (he completely dominated Tito whereas Oscar just folded down the stretch). Picking boxing is a vague gesture, but often it comes to mental toughness, and on that score, Hopkins is the last motherfucker I'd ever doubt. The guy is as tough as anybody in the game, and his whole life is about beating Oscar. I don't know if Oscar can say the same in return.

Hopkins will win this one.

Nice analysis, Jason. You know, skillwise, I don't think the gap is that huge---though Hopkins is definitely better---but you can't make up for that much size unless you are the better boxer. Hopkins is bigger, stronger, and more skilled...very bad equation for De la Hoya. The only miracles that I can see saving De la Hoya are:
1)Hopkins suddenly aging or during the fight---very unlikey, as the guy lives like a samurai, and has the body of a fighter at least ten years younger. I can see him fighting another 2-3 years at this level without any noticable dropoff. Another related point---Hopkins has had the same trainer virtually his whole career. Talk about stability---his routine for preparing for fights is machine drilled, his training camps are the most professional in the game. I've never been so sure that Mayweather is the right coach for Oscar, and to top that they've only worked together for a handful of fights.

2)A freak injury, like a fucked up shoulder or something, zaps Hokpinks during the fight. Very unlikey, for the same reasons as above.

3)ODH fights the perfect fight, goes the distance and gets a close decision. Problem is, Hopkins doesn't let guys fight the perfect fight---and Oscar's best shots will have no effect. It's hard to recall that, as dominating as Bernard was against Trinidad, he did take some great shots in that fight, but he shook them off with such ease that it appeared Tito didn't land anything significant. Oscar will be reduced to peppering Bernard with love taps while somehow avoiding clinches and his foe's obscene arsenal of counters...and that's his best case scenario.

That said, I'm rooting for Oscar, because it took insane balls to take this fight.