Advertisement
Advertisement
Boxingscene.com

Trainer: Kovalev Must Treat Hopkins Like an Old Fighter

by David P. Greisman

John David Jackson has fought Bernard Hopkins, losing to him back in 1997. He has worked with Hopkins as a trainer. And Jackson, who now corners light heavyweight titleholder Sergey Kovalev, will prepare the power-puncher to face the 49-year-old future Hall of Famer in November - provided Kovalev defeats Blake Caparello on Saturday night in Atlantic City.

Jackson was always OK with Kovalev facing either Hopkins or 175-pound champion Adonis Stevenson, though he leaned toward Hopkins because he feels Stevenson won’t be free to fight due to the pending lawsuit against him and others. Kovalev is the best remaining opponent and the most lucrative option available, the trainer said.

In terms of how Kovalev and Hopkins would stack up against each other:

“You give experience to Bernard. You can’t argue with that,” Jackson said. “Power? Sergey. Ring generalship? Give Bernard that. Boxing skill? At this stage in Bernard’s career I give it to Sergey, because he’s older. The most important factor is the youth factor, and that plays heavily on Sergey. Bernard’s an old fighter. You’ve got to treat him like an old fighter.

“Most of these guys he’s fought, they give him all the respect and they kind of idolize him going into the ring. Sergey doesn’t understand English [Note: He does]. He couldn’t care less about Bernard Hopkins. He wants what Bernard has: the belts, which means more money. He could care less about who Bernard is and what he’s done. That helps him out.”

Jackson then broke down what it would mean to treat Hopkins like an old fighter:

“You have to make him move faster, punch more often. You got to hit him in his arms, hit him in his shoulders, hit him in his chest, hit him everywhere an old body doesn’t want to be hit, because once we get older we can’t take that kind of punishment. The body wasn’t built to take that. The way Sergey hits? Hit him everywhere. Don’t aim for the head. Chop the body, the head will fall. Make him fight the first six rounds. The other six? It’s your fight. Bernard has not had a hard fight probably since Trinidad.”

Hopkins would pose a threat otherwise, Jackson said.

“If he lets Bernard pace the fight, if he lets Bernard dictate what’s going on and he’s not pressing Bernard and hitting Bernard and let Bernard punch when Bernard wants to punch, it’ll pose a big problem, because Bernard will still be semi-fresh the last half of the fight. And he can play all the tricks. He can hold, punch when he’s holding, and just do what he wants to do and frustrate you and win a decision.

“Sergey has to nullify all that from round one. You got 12 rounds to fight me. We’re not going to sit there and dance and hold and get penalized for all that stupid stuff. You’re going to fight me. If you can fight me for 12 rounds at this pace with the kind of punches I’m hitting you with, then you deserve it. He should go into the Hall of Fame that day, that night.”

Jackson was then asked whether he’d advise his fighter to seek advanced drug testing for a Hopkins fight. The trainer responded that he feels Hopkins’ accomplishments are due to his strategy and intelligence in the ring and his conditioning outside of it.

“He’s smart. You’ve got to give him credit for that. He’s very smart in the ring. He’s very technically sound. He understands the game of boxing. He keeps the distance when he has to and he gets close when he has to. I just think his opponents haven’t made him fight harder. They haven’t pushed that old body. How many punches does Bernard throw per round? Not many. Because he doesn’t have to. He picks his punches. And these guys fall right into that trip. They follow him around the ring. He’ll touch you, touch you, touch you. Grab you. And then you look up, 12 rounds have gone by, he’s got the decision.

“I’d never say that’s [performance enhancing drugs] something that Bernard does. Bernard is smart. He stays in the gym all year long. He takes care of himself. He doesn’t get bloated up to 220 pounds and try to lose weight. He keeps it down relatively close. That’s just smart for his lifestyle. He’s been very disciplined his whole career.”

Pick up a copy of David’s book, “Fighting Words: The Heart and Heartbreak of Boxing,” at http://bit.ly/fightingwordsamazon or internationally at http://bit.ly/fightingwordsworldwide . Send questions/comments via email at [email protected]

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by yoz on 08-04-2014

[QUOTE=jas;14817116]Credit to John David. He's trained bhop and says he doesn't think he's on PEDs[/QUOTE] Hmmm...........

Comment by mistermartin on 08-04-2014

This is an excellent fight for EVERYONE involved. Duva gets a big fight...GBP gets a high profile fight (after schaefer's departure) Nard gets to go for history & legacy fighting a beast of the division. Kovelev gets to become indisputed…

Comment by bojangles1987 on 08-02-2014

[QUOTE=BIGPOPPAPUMP;14816961]Easier said than done[/QUOTE] Of course. I think Kovalev's the guy to do it, though.

Comment by BrushMyHair. on 08-02-2014

That is horrible advice. That is a former trainer of his and co trainer, and opponent. That is the Bitter opponent in him that got knocked out.

Comment by Tobi.G on 08-02-2014

Verry good fight! Kovalev is propably the hardest opponent that Hopkins could fight right now. I doubt Hopkins will be able to go 12 with Kovalev but Hopkins has suprised the boxing world so manny times already, you should never…

Post a Comment - View More User Comments (20)
Top Headlines Unbeaten Jeff Horn Overcomes Knockdown; Stops Ali Funeka in Sixth Froch Ridicules Golovkin: Your Best Wins Are Murray, Macklin! Making Cotto-Kirkland a PPV is Not a Healthy Start to New Year Video: Shawn Porter Discusses His Future, Predicts Fights Lenny Z Sees Freddie Roach as Difference Maker in Lipinets Bout Video: Demetrius Andrade on Culcay Fight, Wanting Erislandy Lara Schaefer: I Sort of Left on Top, Boxers Are Happy To Have Me Back! Video: Mikey Garcia, Schaefer on Getting McGregor in The Ring Joseph Parker vs. Andy Ruiz - CompuBox Historical Review Molina Weighs 143.2 On Second Try; Gives Money to Crawford Video: Errol Spence on Status of Kell Brook Shot, Garcia-Thurman Video: Naazim Richardson Reacts To Parting With Bernard Hopkins Photos: Krzysztof Wlodarczyk vs. Leon Harth - Official Weigh-In Photos: Terence Crawford vs. John Molina - Official Weigh-In Anthony Joshua Throws Weight Behind Members-Only London Gym Photos: Cuellar vs. Mares, Charlo vs. Williams - Official Weigh-In Erik Skoglund Gets TKO Victory: Sven Fornling, Mikaela Lauren Win Alejandro Gonzalez Jr. Found Murdered in Guadalajara No Drama In L.A.: Cuellar, Mares, Charlo, Williams Make Weight Menard, Beltran Make Weight for HBO Co-Feature Molina Weighs In at 144 Pounds for 140-Pound Crawford Fight Photos: Julio Cesar Chavez Jr., Dominik Britsch - On Weight For War Paul Gallen Beats Junior Paulo, Vows To KO Ryan Carr Next Concepcion vs. Yafai Still On, WBA Belt At Stake For Yafai Only Adrien Broner Hit For Damages in Sex Tape Lawsuit Photos: Jayson Velez vs. Alfredo Santiago, Serrano-Silgado Weigh-in Light-Heavy, Trainer Banned Over Nick Blackwell Readmission Francisco Vargas vs. Miguel Berchelt Lands on BoxNation Video: Joshua, Molina, Chisora, Whyte, Ortiz, Taylor Weigh-In Hozumi Hasegawa in Shock Retirement, Won't Defend WBC Belt Photos: Yafai on Point, Concepcion Overweight and Loses Belt Photos: Joshua vs. Molina, Chisora vs. Whyte - Official Weigh-in Randy Caballero, Golden Boy Reach Deal To Extend Promotional Lipinets' Manager: Troyanovsky Had No Chin, Indongo Ours in 2017 Abner Mares: I'm Not Scared of Cuellar's Power; I Hit Hard, Too Wladimir Klitschko: I Want To Fight The Very Best Anthony Joshua Charlo: Not Much Left For Me at 154; I'm Not Afraid of Golovkin! Frank Warren Talks Parker-Ruiz, Joshua Revealing McCracken Link Quigg: I Have To Keep Winning, Build Buzz For Frampton Rematch Bob Arum Reflects on Kicking Out Anthony Mundine, Praises Horn
Advertisement

Latest Active Forum Threads
Advertisement
Advertisement