Hopkins: I Wanted a Knockdown in the 12th, not Survival

by David P. Greisman

Bernard Hopkins was far behind on the scorecards and needed a knockout to beat Sergey Kovalev. And while Hopkins had landed a good shot on Kovalev earlier in the round, Kovalev would hurt him in return. Whereas others might’ve taken that as a sign that the knockout wouldn’t come and it was better just to make it to the final bell, Hopkins said that he couldn’t settle for that.”

“I was determined to try to hit him so I could put him down,” Hopkins said at the post-fight press conference. “Did I look like I was trying to survive in the 12th? We was rolling. I could’ve tried to hold him or grab him like most sensible people would’ve tried to do, right? I was trying to swing and hopefully get some shots in.”

Hopkins remained on his feet, wasn’t able to take Kovalev off his own, and wound up losing a shutout decision on the scorecards.

“I wasn’t going to run around and hold and do things to just get by and say I survived,” he said. “Me and Sergey was throwing punches all the way until the bell ring. Yes, I’m always a smart-thinking fighter first, but sometimes you just got to bite down, man.”

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

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by Baltimore on 11-10-2014

Noting but respect for B-Hop and that 12th round. He knew he could have ran and held and still had the crowd cheer for him when it was over, but no he wanted to give one last realistic shot at…

Comment by SUBZER0ED on 11-10-2014

[QUOTE=MDPopescu;15088931]That's why Kovalev didn't any risk in rushing onto Hopkins earlier... Kovalev knew that Hopkins would try to wear him down and possibly look for a lake KO in the championship rounds -- rounds that Kovalev never fought before... On…

Comment by robbyheartbaby on 11-10-2014

Man I'm going to miss Bernard Hopkins :(

Comment by Mike D on 11-10-2014

[QUOTE=PAC-BOY;15088706]Give bhop much cred...he tried to get it too...Thats what a real champ does.[/QUOTE] Yup. [COLOR="White"]mad respect[/COLOR]

Comment by MDPopescu on 11-10-2014

[QUOTE=NEELZ;15088947]I also disagree with anyone who says Kovalev followed some script or "agreement" to take it easy on Hopkins and not KO him. Kovalev tried to hit him with a KO punch every single round. The first round after the…

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