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"The Executioner" is simply put one of the greatest of all-time.
Bernard "The Executioner" Hopkins is one of the few current fighters you could say would be able to compete in any era of the sport. He is simply that good, and at age 47 is a physical marvel.
Hopkins' (52-6-2 32 KO) list of career accomplishments is legendary: former undisputed middleweight champion (on more than one occasion), first man to retain all four sanctioning body titles and The Ring Magazine belt in one fight, a record 20 defenses of the middleweight title, former The Ring Magazine light heavyweight champion, the oldest man to ever win a world title at the age of 46. We can go on and on and on.
Even before achieving mainstream success, Hopkins was a successful middleweight champion, winning the belt against Segundo Mercado and defending it against notable fighters such as John David Jackson, Simon Brown and a then-undefeated Glen Johnson.
Hopkins participated in Don King's middleweight unification tournament in 2001 and dominated fellow champion Keith Holmes before moving on to face tournament favorite and pound-for-pound fighter Felix Trinidad. Trinidad entered the fight a huge favorite, only to be dominated and stopped by Hopkins in the 12th round at Madison Square Garden.
Hopkins would go on to dominate and stop Oscar De La Hoya in 2004. The fight ended with a vicious body shot in the ninth round.
In 2005 at the age of 40, Hopkins defeated Howard Eastman by easy unanimous decision to set the middleweight record of 20 defenses. He would finally lose the middleweight titles to Jermain Taylor, dropping two highly controversial decisions in fights that many felt Hopkins had won.
Giving up on the middleweight division, Hopkins jumped to light heavyweight to challenge Roy Jones Jr.-conquerer Antonio Tarver, who again entered the fight a heavy favorite. Hopkins dominated the fight from start to finish, earning a clear unanimous decision and The Ring Magazine light heavyweight championship.
He would successfully defend the title against Winky Wright before dropping it in a very close split decision against undefeated Joe Calzaghe. Due to his age, many felt Hopkins was at the end of his career; but he quickly proved them wrong.
Hopkins' next trick would be a move back down in weight for a catch-weight bout with undisputed middleweight champion Kelly Pavlik. Hopkins, again a massive underdog, turned in what he deemed the performance of his career, dropping and dominating the undisputed champion en route to a whitewash unanimous decision.
After settling an old score, defeating Roy Jones Jr. by unanimous decision, Hopkins contemplated a move to heavyweight but was rebuffed when WBA champion David Haye refused to fight him. Hopkins instead stayed at light heavyweight, where he attempted to become the oldest man to win a championship.
In his first challenge of champion Jean Pascal, a fight most felt Hopkins won, a draw was the decision. In their rematch, however, Hopkins was the clear victor, and at 46 years old, became the oldest man to win a world championship.
After losing the title to Chad Dawson this year, Hopkins has stated a desire to resume his career, but no fights have yet materialized.