MANILA, Philippines – New World Boxing Council (WBC) light heavyweight champion Chad Dawson believes former champion Bernard Hopkins should not hang up his gloves yet because he can still box like a young fighter.
In their match last weekend in Atlantic City, Dawson was the busier fighter, landing cleaner punches and refusing to be frustrated with Hopkins’ tactics. He eventually won via majority decision.
“I don’t think Hopkins will retire,” Dawson said in a Boxing Scene interview. “He can still beat a lot of the young guys.”
“He came to fight. I said it a few times before. He fights like a much younger fighters. Hopkins fights like a 35-year-old,” he added.
It was actually the second meeting between Dawson and Hopkins, as their first meeting last October ended in controversy: it ended after only two rounds when Dawson tried to toss Hopkins to the mat and the veteran boxer injured his shoulder.
Dawson was originally awarded the victory, but that result was overturned and a rematch was ordered.
Dawson admitted that the fight against Hopkins – the oldest man to win a major world championship – was difficult for him.
“(Hopkins) picked his punches very good. He doesn’t waste any energy,” Dawson said. “It was much tougher than I thought it would be.”
“I knew that I couldn’t make any mistakes because he would pick up on it. I knew I had to keep my composure and I had to keep him at the end of my jab,” he added.
Hopkins was clearly disappointed after losing his title, however, and he questioned if Dawson had done enough to earn the victory.
“What did he do to win that fight? The only way I knew I would win is I knocked him out. Let the public judge for themselves,” Hopkins said after the match.
Dawson, for his part, seems as though he wants to move on after two bouts against Hopkins.
“I’m just ready to get back in the ring and I’m ready for whoever is next,” he said.