LAS VEGAS, NV -- Confused? So was everyone else in attendance at the Mandalay Bay Events Center for the Roy Jones Jr.-Bernard Hopkins fight. A fight short on action was filled with low blows and rabbit punches. Hopkins dropped to ground on three occasions like he was hit with a Louisville Slugger. Jones got him with what appeared to be rabbit punches in the sixth and eighth rounds. Hopkins also went down on a low blow in the 10th. The rest of the fight was filled with little action, lots of booing from the 6,792 in attendance and plenty of clinching. Hopkins gets the win via unanimous decision, 117-110, 117-110 and 118-109, but neither fighter is going to have boxing fans clamoring for more fights in the future.
The most exciting moment of the fight came after that sixth round rabbit punch. Hopkins dropped to the ground and rolled around like he was seriously injured. It looked like the fight was in jeopardy of being stopped.
"I was seeing spots after the sixth round," said Hopkins (51-5-1, 35 KOs). "I've been hit in the back of the head in the gym before but it never felt like that. Right now, I'm toughing it out doing this interview. I got hit in the back of my head and my legs just went. I'm still human in there."
When Hopkins rose to his feet and the fight was restarted, he charged forward wildy throwing punches like a maniac. The bell sounded and Hopkins threw four or five more punches. As Weeks broke it up, a ringside observer, who some believed to be Jones' son raced into the ring. It's the kind of thing that could have turned into another embarrassing incident for boxing. Order was restored quickly and the culprit was taken from the ring area by Las Vegas Metro police.
The crowd didn't seem to believe that Hopkins was badly hurt on any of the three occasions. It booed loudly and Jones (54-7, 40 KOs) added fuel to the fire by mugging for photographers and talking to ringside onlookers.
It was a rough fight and both fighters missed the postfight press conference to tend to their injuries. Jones had multiple cuts over his left eye. Hopkins was still spots back in locker room, left the area under his own power and is staying overnight at Southern Hills Hospital.
The fight was a bizarre culmination to a 17-year rivalry that began with a Jones Jr. win over Hopkins back in 1993. Jones Jr. ruled the roost up at light heavyweight and was considered by many to be the pound-for-pound king into the early 90's while Hopkins controlled the middleweight in relative obscurity. Hopkins finally got his due in his early forties with wins over Antonio Tarver, Oscar De La Hoya and Kelly Pavlik. At the same time, Jones Jr. was on the decline. Hopkins, 45, entered the rematch as a 5-to-1 favorite over the 41-year-old Jones Jr.