When they met for the first time in 1993, there was a sense that the best had yet to come from either fighter.
Roy Jones Jr., 21-0 at the time of the fight, was starting to become the deified boxing freak of nature who personified his reign of dominance throughout the 1990's. He had yet to secure the resume necessary to garner pound-for-pound consideration, although many knew it was just a matter of time.
That year, 1993, was also one of great importance to Bernard Hopkins who after being incarcerated and losing his first professional fight, was in the midst of a 22-fight win streak, blazing his own trail up the boxing hierarchy.
For boxing enthusiasts, what you had was a much-anticipated fight between two very good young fighters. For the rest of the public, you had Roy Jones Jr. taking on just another fighter.
The fight had little of note as Jones out-quicked, out-boxed and eventually out-pointed Hopkins to a unanimous 12-round decision. Nothing to demand an immediate rematch.
But what happened over the next 10-12 years is purely a shame as Jones and Hopkins both skyrocketed to Hall of Fame careers, while never facing each other again untill 2010, when both appeared to be on the edge of boxing senility.
A 1995-2002 window of a Roy Jones Jr.-Bernard Hopkins rematch would have made for one of the biggest fights of the 90's.
Too bad it never happened.