By Mitch Abramson
Bernard Hopkins responded to allegations by Chad Dawson that he’s a dirty fighter during a conference call on Wednesday to hype their Oct. 15 fight. Hopkins basically dismissed the notion that he got to where is by fighting dirty. Dawson made the complaint during a previous conference call.
“Dirty fighter?” Hopkins said. “I’ve been called worst names than that. I feel like I’m a fighter who built a legacy of winning and showing my craft from A to Z. You don’t get mentioned as a dirty fighter and get to the Hall of Fame when you’re a dirty fighter.”
Hopkins explained away Dawson’s comments by suggesting that Dawson is already whining about Hopkins’ tactics before the fight has even take place.
“To me it sounds like he’s already complaining and we haven’t even thrown a punch yet,” Hopkins said. “That’s the difference between a veteran and a rookie. He’s trying to put it out there that I’m a dirty fighter. I believe that I’m a fighter who goes in there to win. I don’t have to be dirty to win.”
At the same time, Hopkins admitted that “all fighters are dirty” given the incredible physical and competitive nature of the sport. Hopkins said that no matter what people think of the way he fights, there’s a referee present to enforce the rules and that Dawson can always attempt to fight dirty back if he feels so inclined.
“When you’re in a fight, things may happen by accident,” Hopkins went on. “[But] I’m going to embarrass another young gun of the boxing world and I’m going to prove that I’m not better but that I’m different.”
Mitch Abramson covers boxing for the New York Daily News and BoxingScene.com.