THE RING Magazine December issue: On sale now
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That’s Bernard “The Alien” Hopkins on our cover, as if you didn’t know that.
Hopkins, who will be a half century old on Jan. 15, will attempt to pull off yet another otherworldly feat when he takes on power-punching Sergey Kovalev on Nov. 8 in Atlantic City on HBO.
The grand old man won’t shock anyone if he beats Kovalev; that’s what he does, even at an grandfatherly age. His superb boxing mind seems to overcome any physical limitations.
This matchup seems to be different, though. Kovalev isn’t as limited as Beibut Shumenov, the last youngster to learn that Hopkins can still bring it.
Kovalev has been a knockout machine similar to Gennday Golovkin, with a string of nine consecutive stoppages that could be longer if it weren’t for a technical draw in 2011 that resulted from a cut on his opponent.
The Russian also reportedly had more than 200 amateur fights, which provided a good foundation in terms of fundamentals. The man knows how to box.
Punching power. Boxing ability. Kovalev is no joke.
Contributor Norm Frauenheim explores the very real risk Hopkins is taking in New Challenges, New Dangers, our cover story in the December 2015 issue.
Will Hopkins do it again? Or has he bitten off more than he can chew this time? One person who doesn’t seem to be overly concerned is Hopkins himself.
“Don’t worry about when or how I’m going to leave or break down,” he said. “After I whip Kovalev systematically, I don’t want to be on nobody’s pound-for-pound list because that would make me human. You guys are all humans. I understand you. But you don’t understand me.”
As part of our Hopkins-Kovalev preview package, Hopkins explained to contributor Bernard Fernandez in Killing Time how his years in prison as a young man helped shape the person – and boxer – he became.
Hopkins, who was convicted of strong-armed robbery, turned to boxing behind bars in part because there was nothing else to do. And he was fortunate to be incarcerated with a former boxer named Michael “Smokey” Wilson, who taught Hopkins the rudiments of boxing.
Hopkins also learned the value of one thing that continues to serve him to this day: discipline.
“Where do people think I get that toughness, that discipline?” he said.
And, finally, contributor Tim Smith explains in A Win-win-win-win-win-win Situation how the Hopkins-Kovalev fight came together, as Hopkins originally was expected to take on Adonis Stevenson. ÔÇª
December 2014 is a double-preview issue, which also includes a package on the Nov. 22 Manny Pacquiao-Chris Algieri fight in Macau, China.
Contributor Mark Whicker writes in Substance Behind the Stare that the fact Pacquiao is taciturn belies his inner strength, which was honed over a difficult life and continues to serve him in the ring.
In A Moment in the Spotlight, contributor Tim Smith explores the challenges faced by “B-side” opponents like Algieri, who has been thrust into a high-profile situation that he has never experienced.
And, in Algieri Can Beat Pacquiao If ÔÇª , contributor Don Stradley gives you five things that must happen if the underdog is to pull off an historic upset. …
Contributor Elliot Worsell explores in Life Lessons the crazy several-week period in which Kell Brook won his first world title by beating Shawn Porter but then was slashed by a machete while on vacation. ÔÇª
In ‘Money’ Mania, contributor Ron Borges looks back on Floyd Mayweather Jr.’s convincing victory in his rematch with Marcos Maidana and Mayweather’s subsequent comments about domestic violence, which got him into hot water, and a possible fight with Pacquiao. ÔÇª
Contributor Thomas Hauser looks back on the life and career of one-time Cassius Clay opponent and former football player Charlie Powell in No Pretender. Powell died in September. ÔÇª
And, in Fighting in Tinseltown, Stradley writes that we don’t see as many boxers in mainstream films as we once did.
Also in the November issue:
- In Jabs and Straight Writes, Hauser writes that the Danny Garcia-Rod Salka card was one to forget.
- We connect the original king of modern boxing – John L. Sullivan – with the current one -Mayweather – in Advanced Degrees. It took a lot of steps but we got there.
- Undisputed heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko is the subject of this month’s Best I Faced, by Anson Wainwright.
- In Ready to Grumble, David Greisman explores the profound sway Mayweather has on his adopted hometown of Las Vegas.
- Bernard Hopkins explains the uppercut in this month’s installment of Perfect Execution.
- The Fighter of the Month? Mayweather earned it with a one-sided victory in his rematch with Maidana.
- Contributor Gareth A Davies writes about the U.K.’s strong 1-2 junior featherweight punch of Carl Frampton and Scott Quigg in Letters from Europe.
- Doug Fischer gives his take on Mayweather’s immediate future in Best of Dougie’s Mailbag.
- Hughie Fury, Tyson’s cousin, is the focus of New Faces this month.
- In Sweet Science, Scott LaFee compares the dangers of bareknuckle and gloved boxing.
- Thomas Gerbasi writes about Mia St. John’s very personal battle for mental health reform in his Women’s Boxing column.
- And, in Amateur Boxing, Joseph Santoliquito chronicles the success of three U.S. boxers in the recent Youth Olympics.