MANILA, Philippines – Former World Boxing Council light heavyweight champion Bernard Hopkins cried foul after he lost his title to new champion Chad Dawson Saturday in Atlantic City in New Jersey (Sunday morning in Manila).
Dawson was named the winner and new champion via majority decision, with scores of 114-114, 117-111 and 117-111.
In a brief post-fight interview, Hopkins questioned if Dawson had done enough to deserve the decision.
“What did he do to win that fight?” he was quoted as saying by ESPN. “They (the judges) did what they wanted to do.”
“The only way I knew I would win is if I knocked him out. Let the public judge for themselves,” Hopkins added.
But Dawson also called Hopkins out for his “dirty” tactics.
“He is a dirty fighter, that old man,” Dawson said of the 47-year-old Hopkins. “I knew the headbutts were coming... The headbutts were blatant but I kept my composure.”
ESPN boxing writer Dan Rafael called the bout “relatively action-free” and “sloppy,” with Hopkins initiating much of the feinting, clinching and mauling throughout the 12 rounds.
But it was Dawson who landed the cleaner punches en route to his 31st career victory.
The bout was a rematch of the two boxers’ first match last October, which ended after just two rounds.
In round two of that first match, Dawson lifted Hopkins and tried to throw him to the canvas. Hopkins suffered an injured left shoulder, and referee Pat Russell called a stop to the contest, awarding Dawson the victory.
The result was eventually overturned to a no-decision and a rematch was scheduled.
It remains to be seen if Hopkins will continue his boxing career. Last year, he made history by defeating Jean Pascal to become the oldest man tow in a major world title at age 46. -- With a report from Agence France-Presse.