Dan Rafael of ESPN.com reports that Bernard Hopkins will be back on April 19, as he faces Beibut Shumenov at the D.C. Armory in our nation's capital, which has become another East Coast fight hub for Golden Boy Promotions.
Hopkins (54-6-2, 32 KO) defeated Tavoris Cloud to win the IBF title last March, then returned with a win over Karo Murat in October. The 49-year-old "Alien," formerly "The Executioner," has stated a (likely unrealistic) goal to unify all four light heavyweight titles, which could be difficult with HBO in the Adonis Stevenson and Sergey Kovalev business right now and Hopkins fighting on Showtime with Golden Boy.
But he'll start on that path anyway, as Shumenov (14-1, 9 KO) holds the WBA belt. He's a pure paper titlist, winning the belt with a controversial points defeat of Gabriel Campillo back in January 2010 in a rematch (Campillo defeated him the first time in 2009), and defending against also-rans and non-contenders since then. His most recent defense came on December 14, which was an audition fight to get SHO audiences familiar with Shumenov. That night, the Kazakh titleholder trucked woefully overmatched Tamas Kovacs.