After the press conference spat yesterday with Jean Pascal, Bernard Hopkins took to the airwaves on WFAN in New York to address the topic. Pascal made allegations of the 46-year-old Hopkins being on performance-enhancing drugs, but Hopkins says he's clean. Chris Fedor of Sports Radio Interviews transcribed the interview.
"Whatever he was thinking he was desperate and he started saying ‘take a test, take a blood test, take this, take that.’ ... My career has been 23 years and that's the first time and the only time, that I heard some ridiculous allegations. But guess what? I told the people to stay focused and I told the media to stay focused because when a guy is scared and Pascal didn't want to fight this fight a second time. ... I've been a clean living guy and that's why I'm boxing at 46-years old."
Hopkins also took the chance to explain that he flat-out doesn't like Pascal:
"I don't like him. I think he is very young and disrespectful. He doesn't respect his elders on the block. (Host: He disrespected you?) Yeah and he tried to put his arms around me and that's when the scuffle started. Don't say things and then I let you put your arm around me. I had to let him know that if you say something fine but I'm not going to let you put your arm around me when you have the microphone and disrespect me. Because then that becomes something else. Because I haven't forgotten the street mentality when things were said and things were done. I just don't use it in my life now and know how to separate the two, but he tried to con me, talk about me, and also want me to be in this huddle with him as he tries to grab my shoulder. That's when I knew I had to let him know you don't put your arm around me. We're not friends. Keep it real. When you say things like that. ‘Okay, I'm gonna beat your butt, I'm gonna beat your ass, and I'm gonna do this and that.' I can take that, but when you start talking about that I've done something that wasn't right because I performed the way I did. What have you been looking at? What have you been watching the last ten years of my career? I didn't just start performing the way I have been doing. I have done great things over the years and I never heard any fighter say that. You know what it is? He is shocked that at this stage of the game that I'm this good."
This is pretty typical Bernard stuff overall, but always fun to hear from B-Hop. He's got a way with the words for sure.
Another thing he said is that he chose to fight Pascal in Montreal so he could "kick his ass in his own backyard," and that he lost money not taking the fight to the Staples Center in Los Angeles. Golden Boy won the bid, so they didn't have to go to Montreal, but realistically the only way that fight would have made more money in L.A. than in Montreal is if Staples were offering basically an absurd site fee. Hopkins hasn't drawn a crowd in the States in years, and Pascal is still a virtual unknown despite being the reigning light heavyweight champion of the world. So that's probably just talkin', but who knows, maybe the Staples Center saw big gate potential in an east coast guy fighting a Haitian-Canadian.