Photo: Abel Sanchez
Undefeated light heavyweight champion Tavoris “Thunder” Cloud (24-0, 19 KOs) took his last run this morning in Big Bear Lake, Calif., prior to departing for Brooklyn, N.Y., to make his fifth title defense on March 9 at Barclays Center against future Hall of Famer Bernard “The Executioner” Hopkins (52-6-2, 32 KOs). Cloud, from Tallahassee, Fla., and his new trainer Abel Sanchez faced a number of challenges at their high-altitude training camp perched at the beautiful Bear Mountain Ski Resort in the mountains east of Los Angeles. They braved a bitterly cold January followed by heavy snowfall that Cloud noted “was beautiful.”
February brought on what Cloud said “was not a good time to be a black man in Big Bear,” when an intense California-wide manhunt lead police to Cloud’s scenic mountain oasis in search of former Los Angeles Police Department cop Christoper Dorner–a fugitive with a $1 million bounty on his head after being suspected of going on a killing spree–whose truck was found in the snow-covered woods near Big Bear Lake. Police got into a gunfight with the outlaw on Glass Road in the Big Bear area before subsequently burning a cabin where he had holed up on Feb. 12.