Hopkins-Pavlik: Old School Vs. New School

Jared GilkersonContributor IOctober 17, 2008

How much does Bernard Hopkins really have left? Plenty.

I consider myself a boxing fan and don't really recall even hearing about Hopkins until 2001 when he was already 36 years old. He leveled the competition earlier in his career, dominated his weight class, and went virtually unnoticed.

That was until he knocked out Felix "Tito" Trinidad in 2001 and then knocked out future Hall of Famer Oscar De La Hoya in 2004 with a vicious body shot. This guy knocked out De La Hoya when he was 40 years old!

He then took it to a crafty lefty Winky Wright, a fighter that many others try to avoid because of his savvy defensive skills and awkward style.  So it's obvious that "The Executioner" has the skills to win on any given night.

Kelly Pavlik rose up in the middleweight rankings very quickly with impressive victories over Edison Miranda and Jermaine Taylor—twice.

Bernard Hopkins record against Taylor? 0-2. Anyone who beats Jermaine Taylor twice—especially since Hopkins lost to him twice—is a solid fighter in my book.

Bernard Hopkins is an exceptional defensive fighter that can make the best of them look bad. But he is 43 years old and hasn't shown his offensive firepower that he once had earlier in his career.

Kelly Pavlik will be looking to score a knockout on Saturday night in Atlantic City against someone who has never been knocked out in 20 years. Kelly possesses power that many middleweights don't possess, but this fight is taking place at 170 pounds, which is 10 pounds heavier than the middleweight limit. Also, Kelly is 26 years old and will be coming at Bernard all night, and has the stamina to do it.

Prediction: Pavlik by decision