New light heavyweight champion Bernard Hopkins, who made history last Saturday by outpointing Jean Pascal in their rematch to become the oldest fighter in boxing history to win a world title at age 46, is wasting no time setting up his first defense.
Golden Boy CEO Richard Schaefer, Hopkins’ promoter, and Gary Shaw, who promotes mandatory challenger and former titleholder Chad Dawson, began negotiating the fight on Wednesday, they both told ESPN.com.
“Richard called me and said he wanted to discuss making the fight and I was excited because we were on the same page,” Shaw said. “We talked about places we could do the fight, but we want to do the fight wherever we can make the most money. He agreed.
“We said we would both get on the phone with HBO on Monday and try to lock in a date. We basically have our deal done. We agreed to a split (of the revenue) and we agreed to a deal in concept.”
Dawson outpointed former titlist Adrian Diaconu on Saturday’s undercard to earn the title shot against whomever won the main event. That was Hopkins, who Dawson has been chasing for the past couple of years.
Dawson’s only defeat came last August in Montreal via an 11th-round technical decision to Pascal. Dawson had the contractual option for a rematch in the event he lost, but Pascal was allowed to first take an interim bout. He took it against Hopkins in December and they fought to the draw.
In order to allow Pascal and Hopkins to fight again, Dawson (30-1, 17 KOs) and Shaw stepped aside. But under the terms of the deal, Dawson, 28, of New Haven, Conn., was guaranteed a fight with the winner as long as he won his undercard fight with Diaconu.