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Hip New Thing to Do: Hopkins picking Hatton

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It looks like Oscar de la Hoya has started a trend. "The Golden Boy" said recently that he was picking Ricky Hatton to score the upset this Saturday night against Floyd Mayweather, Jr., and most of us shrugged it off as Oscar wanting Hatton to win so the two could rumble at Wembley Stadium in May.

But, now, Bernard Hopkins is joining in. The always outspoken "Executioner" told BBC Sport, "I see something in Hatton, I think he's the more focused fighter. Hatton is going to throw more punches than Mayweather ever did. The busier, more aggressive fighter, will win. I don't believe Floyd thinks Ricky has what Oscar de la Hoya had or Zab Judah had. Floyd is considered to be the best fighter in the world, and I echo that. We all know he can fight. But can he still fight like a hungry man?

"But what Ricky has that neither of those fighters had is constant energy, punching and pressure - and he's got good whiskers. Ricky is willing to be a slugger, but to throw punches in bunches, and that's rare in boxing today, and that's a dangerous guy because you can't keep him off you. That will be the difference in this fight. There will be some exciting moments early on, but at the end of the day, Ricky Hatton out-hustles Floyd Mayweather to a 12-round unanimous decision."

I don't know if I can buy either Hopkins or Oscar seriously picking Ricky Hatton, but then again, maybe I can. People really seem to be gaining a steady belief in Hatton as the fight draws closer. It doesn't feel like Ricky is half the underdog he was two months ago.

I also don't consider him quite the underdog that I did when the fight was signed, but it would take a performance that soundly trumps every other one of his 43 straight wins to beat Mayweather. And Floyd is going to have to be a little off.

I also question how people see Floyd as being in any way unfocused. He and Roger Mayweather are tremendous as far as preparing for a fight goes. It may not quite come off that way on "24/7," but, seriously, they know what they're doing. And if you read recent comments from both, they know what they're up against with Hatton. They just think Floyd's the better fighter.

Here's a question: Is there any way this fight lives up to the hype at this point?

Source: Mark Staniforth (Ticker via Yahoo)