Bernard Hopkins, the oldest man every to win a recognised world title, kissed goodbye to his WBC light-heavyweight title with a majority decision loss to American Chad Dawson.
In a dull night of boxing at the Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, Hopkins showed little desire to test Dawson’s chin instead elected to make himself as difficult to hit and spoil whenever possible.
Dawson (31-1) threw the most punches throughout and despite suffering a nasty gash above his high, retained his composure to avoid occasional flurries of punches and record a reasonably comfortable victory.
Two judges scored the fight 117-111 in favour of Dawson whilst a third could not split the pair at 114-114.
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47-year-old Hopkins slips to 56-6-2 and his most recent performance may encourage Wales’ Nathan Cleverly to believe that the American is ready for a firm fight offer for later this year.
Elsewhere on the card, US heavyweight Seth Mitchell survived a first round storm to preserve his perfect record with a third round knockout of Chazz Witherspoon.
Mitchell (25-0-1) may now look to prove himself in classier company before chasing an oft mentioned title shot.
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