Future Hall of Famer and IBF Light Heavyweight Champion Bernard "The Alien" Hopkins worked out in front of members of the media Thursday at DSG Boxing Gym in Philadelphia as he winds down preparation for his Saturday, April 19, World Championship Unification against Beibut Shumenov.
Hopkins, the IBF titleholder, and Shumenov, the WBA Super Champion, will square off in the main event at the DC Armory in Washington, D.C.
At 49-years-old, “The Alien” Hopkins (54-6-2, 32 KOs), of Philadelphia, is looking to become the oldest fighter in boxing history to unify world titles, while Shumenov (14-1, 9 KOs), of Shymkent, Kazakhstan, is aiming to become the fastest fighter to unify the light heavyweight division with only 15 professional fights.
In the April 19 co-main event, IBF Welterweight World Champion Shawn “Showtime” Porter will defend his title against former two-time and two-division word champion Paulie “Magic Man” Malignaggi. Undefeated WBO Middleweight Champion Peter “Kid Chocolate” Quillin will put his title on the line against former interim WBO Junior Middleweight Champion Lukas Konecny.
Joining Hopkins at Thursday’s workout was undefeated junior welterweight prospect Zachary Ochoa, who will square off against Hector Marengo in the second of three bouts that will air on Showtime beginning at 7 p.m. ET/PT (delayed on the West Coast).
Below is what the participants had to say after Thursday’s workouts:
BERNARD HOPKINS, IBF Light Heavyweight World Champion
“If you don’t respect your job, it’s going to disrespect you and kill you.
“To be 49-years-old, approaching 50 and knocking on the door of being a senior citizen. It’s a profound statement of my dedication.
“It’s sweeter now to be here with everybody. Everything I do is history. If you had one more chance to see something that you loved before you never see it again…here I am. You’ll have a chance to see history. You can tell your grandkids about what you saw today at Danny Garcia’s gym.
“Taking the test without studying is like taking a fight without being in the gym. The gym is studying. The test is April 19. You can put the cart in front of the horse if you’re a fool and I think people would agree I’m no fool.
“I’m a guy that loves the craft and respects the craft. You can love something, but it doesn’t mean you respect it. Love is the emotional part; respect is the dedication and hard work. That attitude and that demeanor is always going to be there. That’s just who I am.
“I’m still having fun. That’s the thing that a lot of us miss. I’m having more fun now than when I was in the middle or beginning of my career. There were a lot more things I had to go through in my life, but I’m having more fun now than I had in the last 16 years. Since about 40-years-old, we’re talking nine years later. It’s a big deal. I don’t want to downplay it.