Bernard Hopkins Media Workout (likes being the graybeard) [Boxing]

Bernard Hopkins, in training for his Oct. 15 WBC light-heavyweight world title defense against Chad Dawson in Los Angeles, has a bit of a salt-and-pepper beard, heavy on the salt.

“There’s a lot of gray in my beard,” Hopkins said Tuesday at the Joe Hand Boxing Gym on North Third Street. “And, you know, as the gray continues to keep coming, I want the gray. I want all my gray to come in. I really want to change my name to like the Silver Fox or something.”
It fits the fight theme. Ripley’s is involved in this “Believe It or Not” fight promotion, celebrating Hopkins for being the oldest fighter to win a major world title.

“They say gray is wisdom,” Hopkins said, warming to the subject. “We’re all changing. I’m definitely changing. When you have something that shows your maturity and wisdom, why camouflage it? Society tells you when you see gray, go and paint it black so you can look young. Uh-uh. Anything that nature says is supposed to happen, I want it to happen.”

He was rolling.

“Certain part of the year the leaves turn a different color and then they fall and then the tree is naked. Then a certain part of the year, the tree blossoms. I don’t go against anything against what’s supposed to happen,” Hopkins said. “Same thing in life. We come from being a baby, being taken care of, to taking care of others . . .”

Hopkins brought the circle of life around to next week’s fight.

“I want to look like his father,” Hopkins said of Dawson. “I could be his father. I’m not. But I could be. The age difference. It’s appropriate for me to look like his father. Realistically, if you do the math, he could be my son. I’m 46, he’s 29. You know, I had him early.

“So if you really do the math, it all fits into the scheme of the professor, the knowledge, versus the good student. He could be a great student. So he has to pass a test that the professor’s going to give him. And that’s when he earns his stripes.

“Of course, he’s going to fail. But like any test . . . it’s a process. I’m that parent that’s going to be in that ring. He’s going to follow me. He don’t know he’s following me. I’m going to have him follow me, and I’m going to set traps, and he’s going to come, and he’s going to pay a price, and I’m going to actually physically show him that he’s going to fight my fight, when he’s supposed to be fighting the fight that him and his trainer put together. That takes an education he’s hasn’t gotten yet. He will, hopefully.”

Then again, maybe Hopkins just likes the gray look.

“Some people think it’s sexy, especially if I keep it groomed nice,” he said.

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