Lem Satterfield

Hopkins eyes California ruling, return to the ring

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WASHINGTON, D.C. — RING light heavyweight champ Bernard Hopkins said he would like to return to full-time training in January for a fight opposite Lucian Bute.

Hopkins (52-6-2, 32 knockouts), who turns 47 on Jan. 15, still is recovering from a left shoulder separation, finishing up his six-to-eight weeks of rehabilitation following his controversial HBO Pay Per View clash with Chad Dawson on Oct. 15.

“I’ve been in rehab. It’s 80 percent. It will be 100 percent by January, when I start boxing,” said Hopkins. “I had a slight tear in my rotator cough. I also had an AC break that was diagnosed by X-ray in LA.”

The fight was initially ruled to be a second-round TKO for Dawson after Hopkins was shoved to the canvas and deemed unfit to continue by referee Pat Russell.

Russell did not view Dawson’s shove as a foul, accidental or otherwise, although Hopkins maintained that he was fouled by the young challenger and thus the bout should have been ruled a no-contest.

In accordance with a vote wherein the majority of the WBC’s board members disagreed with the official call, the organization ruled the fight a “technical draw” and will continue to recognize Hopkins as its light heavyweight champ.

Golden Boy Promotions filed a protest with the California State Athletic Commission, which will review the fight and make a ruling at a Dec. 13 hearing, which Hopkins said that he plans to attend.

“I go out next week to the hearing for the request to have the TKO overturned to a no-contest. Truthfully I want a DQ,” said Hopkins, adding that he wanted to face Bute when he returns.

“That’s because I believe that the foul, and the act behind the foul by dragging the head down and this and that, no remorse was shown. But I’m hoping that the worse-case scenario is that it’s a no-contest, which I think that it should have been.”

Hopkins’ comments were made while attending Wednesday’s Washington, D.C., event at the John A. Wilson building, which houses D.C. Mayor Vincent C. Gray, Council Chairman Kwame R. Brown and their support staffs.

A partner in Golden Boy Promotions, Hopkins was in attendance to help promote Saturday night’s HBO-televised clash between RING No. 1-rated junior welterweight Amir Khan (26-1, 18 KOs) and the RING’s No. 6-rated challenger Lamont Peterson (29-1-1, 15 KOs), against whom Khan will defend his IBF and WBA belts at the Washington Convention Center.

Photo by Delane Rouse, Hogan Photos, Golden Boy Promotions

Lem Satterfield can be reached at lem.satterfield@gmail.com

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