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Hopkins to fight Dawson-Diaconu winner if he beats Pascal on Saturday

By Dan Ambrose: 46-year-old Bernard Hopkins (51-5-2, 32 KO’s) faces World Boxing Council (WBC) light heavyweight champion Jean Pascal (26-1-1, 16 KO’s) in a rematch on Saturday night at the Bell Centre in Montreal, Canada. The winner of the Hopkins-Pascal fight will face the winner of Saturday’s undercard fight between former WBC champion Chad Dawson vs. Adrian Diaconu. That will be Hopkins’ next fight if he can get by Pascal on Saturday.

There is no avoiding Dawson any longer for Hopkins, because he was supposed to be the one fighting Pascal next due to rematch clause he had in his contract with Pascal after suffering a loss to him last year. The WBC stepped in between them and ordered Hopkins and Pascal to fight a rematch after their December fight resulted in a 12 round draw. Many people expect Hopkins to beat Pascal on Saturday.

It may turn out that way, but the real fight that boxing fans are interested in is a bout between Hopkins and Dawson. Hopkins is already looking past that fight, talking about a match-up between him and IBF super middleweight champion Lucian Bute. However, Hopkins really needs to focus on the Pascal fight first and then worry about the troubles that Dawson will give him. I see Dawson as a better fighter than Bute, and I can easily see Hopkins getting beaten by Dawson or even Pascal.

Dawson is throwing more combinations now and using his jab a lot more than he did in the past, according to his new trainer Emanuel Steward. With his size, speed and boxing ability, Dawson would be a lot tougher match-up for Hopkins than Pascal. It could be match-up similar to Hopkins’ two fights against Jermain Taylor, who beat Hopkins twice. Dawson is a good inside fighter as well, and he’s smart enough to not just stand there all night long and let Hopkins wrestle him the way that Pascal did in their previous fight.

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