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Bernard Hopkins Chat Transcript: Talking Roy Jones Jr. and More

Mar 31, 2010 – 1:45 PM
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Michael David Smith

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Bernard Hopkins (pictured at right, on the left, with Kelly Pavlik) will step into the ring on Saturday night against Roy Jones Jr. for their long-awaited rematch, but before he does that he stopped here at FanHouse to answer readers' questions in a live chat.

The full chat transcript is below.




[Comment From Billy: ]
Could you put into words how much it means to you to finally get a second shot at Jones?
Bernard Hopkins: It means a lot. I'm highly motivated and ready to go. Seventeen years in the making is a whole lot.

[Comment From Tyler (Memphis, TN): ]
Bernard, did you see the Andre Dirrell-Arthur Abraham fight and, if so, what did you think about the ending?
Bernard Hopkins: I didn't see it. I watch a lot of boxing, but when I'm in training I'm up at 5 in the morning so I don't get a chance to see many of those late-night fights.

[Comment From Keith: ] In the past, you have been highly critical of your hometown quarterback, Donovan McNabb. What are your thoughts on his probable exit from Philly and the Eagles' future under Kevin Kolb?
Bernard Hopkins: After my victory Saturday night I'm going to have a big party where we celebrate sending McNabb where ever he goes. The Eagles have a chance to get to a Super Bowl and a change is well overdue. I think the starter should be Michael Vick and the backup should be Kevin Kolb but I think both guys should get a chance and Vick might still need some time to get comfortable. I'd actually like to see them mix both guys up. I think either one, both having different styles, can be successful.

Vick is a running quarterback. McNabb was a running quarterback early in his career with the Eagles but he changed. Somebody suggested that he should stay in the pocket. And I'm like, McNabb, don't be an idiot. God gave you the ability -- take advantage of that. It's not a bad thing, it's a good thing.

[Comment From Brian: ]
What do you make of the Joe Calzaghe story? Do you think he'll fight again?
Bernard Hopkins: I think he will fight again. He's obviously pretty good at keeping things quiet because nobody heard about it until now. I hope it's not bad -- drugs can do bad things to people. But he came out and told everybody what was going on with his statement. I hope everything is alright with him. For 90-plus percent of athletes, drugs aren't part of what we do. We walk a straight line.

[Comment From Deon Willis: ] Roy Jones is a washed up fighter, you're still a high prized fighter why take this fight?
Bernard Hopkins: To me, it's personal redemption. People need to understand that this fight didn't happen for me when I wanted it to happen. Roy isn't the same fighter he was years ago. Neither am I. But I think the world would agree that I have a lot more left than he does. This rivalry, to me, is like Larry Bird and Magic Johnson. Roy doesn't like me, I don't like Roy. Roy wanted to handcuff my career and I had to make my career out of what I could. And now two legends with 80 years of experience will be on display on Saturday night and I think boxing fans will be doing themselves a disservice if they don't watch two legends. When is the next time you're going to see two legends go at it like this? Roy Jones has pride and Roy Jones wants to go out knowing that he beat Bernard Hopkins, and I think that makes him dangerous. I don't want people to think he's washed up to that point.

I'm also hoping to bring the best out of him and I think that if I bring the best out of him that will also bring the best out of me. Roy has nothing to lose, and that makes him very dangerous.

[Comment From Nardfan: ] Bernard - huge fan. Just wondering what your plans are for the next few years? You're obviously still capable of putting the hurt on people (any guys on your radar for future fights?) and involved in promoting with Golden Boy, but would you ever consider becoming a trainer down the road? If so, is there any up and coming talent you feel you could help mold? Good luck this weekend, but I doubt you'll need it.

Bernard Hopkins: I definitely won't become a trainer. I prefer the business part of it, I like promoting fights. I would also like to accomplish something that only two middleweights have accomplished in history and that's moving up to heavyweight and becoming champion of the world.

David Haye and John Ruiz are fighting in England and my goal is to finish off Roy Jones with an outstanding victory and then campaign in the early fall or late winter -- with time to get my body ready for it -- to become the third middleweight to win a piece of the heavyweight champion. That's my goal, the Haye-Ruiz winner. No catchweight, none of that stuff -- I want the heavyweight title.

I've already got my training nailed down to move up to heavyweight -- my trainer has spent a lot of time looking at my body muscle mass and helped me figure out that at 200 to 204 pounds I can be explosive, speedy and win as a heavyweight at that weight. Keep in mind, David Haye is a big, strong guy, but he's not a Klitschko. He's bigger than me but it's not something where you'd say, "Bernard, are you kidding me?" Now, the Klitschko brothers, those guys are just huge. But it's realistic to think I could go after David Haye or John Ruiz.

I think the winner of John Ruiz-David Haye and me and Roy Jones, it makes a lot of sense.



[Comment From Future MiddleWieghtChamp: ] How did you feel this fight with Roy Jones Jr. will effect your career win or lose?
Bernard Hopkins: Well, if I lose it would be devastating. If I win it would be, "Bernard has finally settled the score with Roy Jones Jr." Losing is no option. I have to win this fight and will win this fight. This fight will take me to the next stage, the next level of things I want to do. People are waiting for reasons to write Bernard Hopkins off and I'm not going to give them a reason for that.

I'm going to leave boxing one day, but if I'm going to leave on my terms, I must beat Roy Jones.

[Comment From CMeaux CMeaux: ] Floyd Jr. or Suga Shane? I'm guyessing you and Suga are BFF's so him right?
Bernard Hopkins: I'm picking a tough fight early on, a tough fight that will be competitive early, and then I think in the middle rounds Shane Mosley will give Floyd Mayweather something that he's never had to take on before.

Mayweather's previous opponents haven't given him the kind of threat that Shane Mosley presents. Shane has quick feet and quick hands. Zab Judah was the last person to really go after Floyd Mayweather like that, and Zab had Floyd's number early on but couldn't sustain it. Shane is going to win the fight.

I think that if Mosley-Mayweather goes past six or seven rounds, people will see a difference in styles between Mosley and anyone else Mayweather has fought in the past. And with all due respect to Jeff and Roger and Floyd Mayweather Sr., Mosley has a better trainer in Naazim Richardson, the best-kept secret in boxing right now.

Naazim isn't just a trainer, he's a strategist. Naazim breaks down tapes until three or four in the morning, he knows what guys are going to do, and he'll tell me things and I wonder, "How did he see that?"

Naazim is a big piece of that puzzle, why Shane Mosley is going to win that fight.

[Comment From Terrence: ] Would you mind explaining how spending time in prison affected the rest of your life?
Bernard Hopkins: I need therapy. I say that to be funny but also to be serious. When I say I need therapy, all the things I have, my kids and my wife, all those good things, every day I'm motivated by where I came from and what I came from. There's not a day that goes by, or even two or three minutes, when I don't think about, "I survived that."

People didn't think I was going to survive past age 18, let alone accomplish what I've accomplished in my life. I go back and think to those days when I didn't have fame and fortune -- I go right back to where I came from. I survived that with nothing. So maybe I need therapy because some would say, "That was a long time ago, Bernard." But I can't let it go because if I let it go I might as well retire from boxing because that's the foundation of my psyche.



[Comment From Mitch: ] Do you like the UFC? How would you do in it?
Bernard Hopkins: I don't like the UFC, at least I don't like people matching it up with boxing. They're two different sports and I don't like it when people compare the UFC and boxing because the UFC is not boxing. Those guys are fighting like a street fight, although I know they train very hard and there's a strategy to it. But I just don't like it when they try to compare that to the sweet science of boxing. I respect what they do, but boxing is totally the opposite from the UFC and MMA. They're just totally opposites.

[Comment From Porfi Porfi: ] My question is : Which victory of yours do you consider the most significant in your boxing career.?
Bernard Hopkins: I could name at least three: Felix Trinidad, Oscar De La Hoya and Kelly Pavlik. I'd also throw one more in there, Antonio Tarver.

I mention those fights because those are all fights where people had totally written me off as an underdog. People thought I was going to get knocked out by Kelly Pavlik and they used that as part of the promotion. I won those fights even though I was a 4-1 or 5-1 underdog.

[Comment From Guest: ] Do you have anything to say to those who think you fight dirty?
Bernard Hopkins: Welcome to boxing.

[Comment From Jakey_beeee] Who is P4P king Manny Pacquiao or Mayweather ?
Bernard Hopkins: Pacquiao. I think when Mosley beats Mayweather, that will be a better fight than Floyd Mayweather vs. Manny Pacquiao. I think Mayweather vs. Pacquiao is being pushed because they could make a lot of money with it. But I think the more competitive fight is Mayweather vs. Mosley. I'm answering this fight more as a fighter than a businessman because I really like the style of the fight of Mayweather vs. Mosley.

Mosley comes forward and throws punches and will make it an exciting fight. Mosley is getting his shot by default -- not because they wanted it -- but I think at the end of the day this will be a more competitive fight and the money was really the only driving issue to make Pacquiao fight Floyd but at the end of the day the right thing happened for Floyd and Shane.

That's it for now. I'd like to invite everyone to watch our fight on pay-per-view, to watch two legends square off in the ring, for a once-in-a-lifetime situation. Watch an extraordinary event on Saturday, April 3.

Note: In addition to being avaailable on pay per view, Bernard Hopkins-Roy Jones can be seen in cooperating movie theaters near you by adddressing this theater list as well as the following ticket purchase methods: www.FathomEvents.com, or, http://www.ncm.com/FathomContent/PDF/HVJ_Theatres_3-11-10.pdf.
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