Sports history was made Saturday night when Bernard “The Executioner” Hopkins (52-5-2, 32 KO’s), at 46 years old, dethroned 28-year-old WBC light heavyweight world champion Jean Pascal (26-2-1, 16 KO’s), making Hopkins the oldest fighter in boxing history to win a significant world title.
“It feels great,” said Hopkins “I did exactly what I wanted to do, which was break this record. I knew it was going to be a tough fight, but I wasn’t going to be denied. You don’t get a chance to do this too often. You are supposed to win titles when you are younger…in your twenties, not when you’re 46. I didn’t feel 46 tonight. I felt more like 36. I can say I am a great fighter. It was exciting. I think everybody enjoyed themselves.
“I have been accused of being boring, but I saved the best for last. I am going to fight like this [with a more exciting style] as long as I am boxing. I believe I am an entertainer. When you are in your last performances, you give it all you’ve got.”
Hopkins continued, “I want to box as well as I can, and I think there are still great fights to come before I leave this game.
“I give you breathtaking!
“I always fight with my heart, but I had to be careful too. I knew this guy was dangerous. He punched hard, but I knew I had to be strong too. Like I said before, I saved the best for last and gave you a blockbuster performance.
“I am going to keep fighting like this until I leave this game and trust me, when I leave, I will not be punch drunk, beat up or broke.
“Be happy I am still here because one thing we can say is that I am not wasting anybody’s time. I went in there with a guy who that is young enough to be my son.
“I don’t see anyone beating this strong bull from Canada. Coming from a veteran, he shouldn’t load up on his punches. He needs to take advice from this legend and not throw his punches so strongly.
“He is a tough kid and he hit me with some good shots, but I am in tremendous shape.
“I think Canada will welcome me back to fight [Lucian] Bute. I want either Bute or [Chad] Dawson.
“This is in the top two moments of my career, right there alongside beating Felix Trinidad and the relevance of that.
“I showed him a little bit of Hearns, Wolcott and Ray Robinson, but mostly, I showed him me.
“Thanks to Golden Boy for getting this fight together after the first fight. We had to deal with a couple of things that worked out for everybody, especially the fans which is very important.
“I would like to thank everybody in Canada that gave me the respect. I hope it was what everyone wanted.
“He [Pascal] is a quality and respectful champion. He will be one of the ones that will stay around for a long time if uses this education that he experienced tonight.
“I just felt that I had to show that guy [Pascal] that he was fading and I was growing stronger. I wanted him to see me doing something crazy. I am the king of mind games. [On doing push-ups in his corner prior to round seven.]
“If I want to box until I am 50, I will as long as I come out unscathed. I will fight as long as I am hungry.
“If I don’t win, this is over for me. I know there is no tomorrow. If I want to still box, I don’t want to embarrass myself. I understand the stats are against me. I had to put myself in a situation where I had to be near perfect.
“I want to thank everyone for enjoying history.
“I talked to George Foreman on the phone. He said he might come out of retirement to break my record [laughs].
“If you thought tonight was something, you ain’t seen nothing yet.”