WBC light-heavyweight champion Bernard Hopkins and former champ Chad Dawson will try to finally resolve their differences at Atlantic City's Boardwalk Hall on April 28.
The 12-round bout is a rematch of a fight in Los Angeles last October, which ended in controversy when Hopkins injured his shoulder after getting flipped to the canvas. Dawson was originally awarded a TKO victory, but the outcome was later ruled a no-decision.
"The first fight did not go as planned, but I'm confident I was going to win that night," Dawson said Wednesday in quotes provided by HBO. "Hopkins is going to have to face his fears. Bernard tried to run away from me, but here we are again. I'm thrilled about the whole situation. I'm very excited to fight on the East Coast because a lot of my fans will be there to see me live. I know I'll be ready come fight night."
Tickets for the fight go on sale Thursday at 12 p.m. Seats are priced from $25 to $300 and are available at Boardwalk Hall and through PressofAtlanticCity.com/tickets. The fight will also be shown on HBO.
Dawson (30-1, 17 KOs) will be making his Atlantic City debut despite hailing from New Haven, Conn. The 29-year-old previously held the WBC and IBF light-heavyweight titles. He suffered his only loss to Jean Pascal two years ago after earning wins over world champs such as Glen Johnson (twice) and Antonio Tarver (twice).
Hopkins (52-5-2, 32 KOs) is the oldest man in boxing history to win a major title. The 47-year-old Philadelphia native accomplished the feat by beating Pascal last May.
Hopkins is a popular figure in Atlantic City boxing circles. He owns a 15-1 record with nine KOs on the boardwalk. He made his pro debut there in 1988, dropping a four-round majority decision to Clinton Mitchell at Resorts Atlantic City.
Two of his biggest victories recently happened at Boardwalk Hall, starting with a 12-round decision over Tarver in 2006. Hopkins briefly retired after that fight, but reconsidered. In 2008, he handed Kelly Pavlik his first defeat with another 12-round decision.
"I am not going to trash talk for this one," Hopkins said Wednesday in quotes provided by HBO Boxing. "Everyone knows what I'm capable of in the ring. They have seen it over 50 times before in the last 20-plus years. I absolutely want to prove that I can beat Chad Dawson, another guy that is almost two decades younger than me, and I am confident I will on April 28."
Hopkins-Dawson II is among at least five shows headed to Atlantic City in the next two months, starting with Philadelphia promoter Russell Peltz's card Saturday at Bally's Atlantic City. In the 10-round main event, Bethlehem, Pa. welterweight prospect Ronald Cruz (15-0, 12 KOs) will meet Allen Conyers (12-5, 9 KOs), of New York. Two local boxers, Atlantic City super-middleweight Antowyan Aikins (3-0, 1 KO) and Atlantic City welterweight DeCarlo Perez (6-1-1, 2 KOs), are on the undercard.