Hopkins vs. Shumenov ends in split decision win for “The Alien”
By Gerardo Granados: Last Saturday night at Washington, D.C., U.S.A., the now unified IBF and WBA Super World light heavyweight champion Bernard “Alien” Hopkins (55-6-2, 32 KO’s) defeated a limited Beibut Shumenov (14-2, 9 KO’s) by a 12 round split decision over twelve rounds with the official score cards of 116-111 x 2 for Hopkins and 114-113 for Shumenov.
I had it 116–111 for Hopkins, but wasn’t pleased with the boxing match. Was this a “fight” that kept fans on their feet excited, cheering in awe thru the twelve rounds of action? Or was it that casual boxing fans are looking forward to see Hopkins fight again?
Shumenov was the defending WBA “Super World” light heavyweight champion, but he looked very limited to me. Not only did he look slow, but he also telegraphed his punches, and stood flat footed with basic boxing skills. His ring smarts didn’t impress, and his ability to adjust was absent, and his corner was missing in action. Is it that Hopkins at 49 years of age is too good to make a fellow 19 years younger champion to look so bad or is it that Shumenov should be a contender instead of a boxing Super World champion (maybe “Regular”).
Hopkins did what he was supposed to do. He risked only the necessary. Hopkins shut off big parts of the rounds, and was there to counter punch and take advantage of Shumenov´s mistakes. Hopkins had better speed, footwork and ring smarts than the younger champion, who was the one pressing the fight. But if Shumenov had not pressured the fight then there would not had been any fighting at all.
What is amateur boxing supposed to be? What is Professional Boxing all about? Will Pro Boxing base his industry and earnings on boxing matches like the one we saw last Saturday night? Someone said that Boxing is like Jazz, the better the boxing is the least people appreciate it; well it might be true but it is also true that the most fan friendly the boxing fight is the bigger pay per view numbers it will get. Or is it that the fight of the year awards goes to “boxing matches” like the Hopkins vs. Shumenov?
Was the fight judge who scored it 114-113 for Shumenov wrong? Under the current scoring rules he was, but maybe Pro Boxing scoring rules should change and benefit the show and in consequence benefit fighters who risk by pressuring the fight and punish boxers who fail to show intention to fight.
I believe if you ask casual fans there will be a unanimous decision about how boring the fight was but if you ask hard core boxing fans they will agree on how good the boxing match was. So, what do the readers think? Was it a split decision?
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