Boxing press conference have become nothing more than promotional tools with promoter, network and sponsorship banners hanging in clear view of the reporters and television cameras.
Technically speaking, that's what they are supposed to be.
But we certainly miss the days when Mike Tyson or even Riddick Bowe would juice up a presser with a profanity-laced tirade or by trying to slug their opponent. Ok, we don't miss the profanity or the violence, but the excitement is something the sport could use.
Bernard Hopkins (51-5) and Jean Pascal (26-1), set to meet for the second time on May 21 at the Bell Center in Montreal on HBO's Championship Boxing, didn't mince words. The two fought to a draw the first time they met. Hopkins practically accused the two Canadien judges, who both scored the bout a draw, of home cooking.
Claude Paquette scored it 113-113 and Daniel Van de Wiele scored it 114-114.
At stake is the WBC. WBC Diamond and Ring Magazine light heavyweight championship.
"I think Hopkins is a cry baby and after the fight he kept crying," Pascal said. "But also the fans asked how he could do this against me-beat me the way he did, why so aggressive."
Pascal was non-stop in his verbal attack on Hopkins.
"He pretends that he won the fight. He's always complaining. He's always whining. I won the fight," Pascal said. "It was a close fight, but I am not a whiner. You can never call a close fight a robbery. The judges said it was a draw. I took my pill and swallowed it."
As for the usually calm Hopkins, 46, who is trying to become the oldest champion, his words weren't any less stern.
"Don't be surprised if he [Pascal] dies in the ring in May. That is how I feel. I mean that," Hopkins said. "This isn't hyping up a fight. This is not for any [expletive] press conference. Don't be surprised if I kill him!"