LOS ANGELES — Forty-six-year-old boxing legend Bernard Hopkins (52-6-2, 1 NC) lost his WBC and Ring light heavyweight titles Saturday night to 29-year-old Chad Dawson (30-1, 2 NC) in a highly controversial second round ending that was ruled by the referee as a TKO.
Following a lackluster first round in which both fighters only landed five punches each and with just a couple seconds left in round two, Dawson ducked a Hopkins’ right hand, Hopkins missed and his forward momentum caused him to lean on top of Dawson.
At that point, Dawson grabbed one of Hopkins’ legs much like he was going for a single leg takedown in an MMA fight, he picked Hopkins up ever so slightly, drove his shoulder into Hopkins’ mid-section and threw him to the ground. Hopkins landed on his left elbow and shoulder and laid on the canvas where he wrangled in apparent pain for several minutes.
With Hopkins’ left arm out of commission and him unable to continue, the referee ruled it as a TKO win for Dawson, much to the disgust of Hopkins, the HBO Pay-Per-View commentators and a large majority of the fans. Hopkins said after the fight he wanted to continue with one arm but the referee would not allow it.
Dawson felt he did nothing wrong, said he thought Hopkins was faking and celebrated his title victory like he had just knocked out the legend using superior technique. However, there was no technique involved in this win and fans can only hope the ruling will be overturned.
With the controversial ending to the Victor Ortiz-Floyd Mayweather fight fight last month, and now this, it is just one more setback for the sport and one more disappointment for the hard-working fans who pay good money to watch.