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"Cleverly would be too quick for Hopkins" - says Johnny Nelson

492 Views 7 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  BoxingAnalyst
While praising Hopkins achievement, Sky pundit Johnny Nelson says Bernard needs to carefully pick his next opponent and thinks he should stay away from Nathan Cleverly, due to the Welshman being "too busy and too fast" for the 48 year old.

Yes, he's got the world title but he has to think carefully about his next opponent and ask 'are there any big fights out there for me?'

He can't fight everybody and anybody because there are people out there who can beat him. That doesn't mean they're better than him, it means they're faster, sharper and younger than him. A lot of fighters, when they reach a certain age, get caught out by less-talented but younger fighters.

So he has to be smart about what he does next and the legacy he wants to create.

There is talk Nathan Cleverly, the WBO light-heavyweight champion, could face him but, if I was Hopkins, I wouldn't want that fight.

From the UK fans' point of view, then it's a great match-up. And if Hopkins feels he can beat the Welshman than good on him.

But, in my opinion, Cleverly is too busy and too fast for Hopkins. Look at how Joe Calzaghe beat Hopkins - Cleverly would be similar; he'd be too quick, his work rate would be too high and his intensity too much for the American.

How do you feel Bernard Hopkins would get on if he was to meet with WBO belt holder Cleverly? Would the Welshman be able to simply outwork the American or would Hopkins' superior boxing skill and experience allow him to upset yet another upcoming prospect?
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Johnny's got my mindset of two days ago. Hopkins can slow a fighter down so well, he's not fighting father time, he practically is father time in that ring. He's masterful at controlling the pace. He might just know way too many tricks that Cleverly hasn't encountered and neutralize him or Cleverly could build on what Calzaghe did and not break, keep throwing punches.

I can't say for sure what I think would happen, but I still think Cleverly would win pretty easily. He doesn't seem to be one of those fighters that doubts himself, he's very mentally strong.
He was certainly doubting himself in the Mohammedi fight, he looked like he was about to cry. That was due to the rough-house tactics and being nullified on the inside, but at a much lower level than Bernard would do it. Having said that, I think Cleverly could beat Hopkins, it's a massive ask, but not insurmountable.
Will have to watch that fight if Clev-Hopkins happens. I remember him having an off night on one of the Warren cards a few years back, but I couldn't really call any specifics.
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