Philly Light heavyweight Jesse Hart said his fight with Joe Smith is personal because Smith beat Bernard Hopkins. First of all Hopkins is NOT a Philly favorite and now lives in Delaware. Hopkins never drew well in Philly. Don King put him in Reading, PA, instead.
Who the Philly fans loved was Hart’s father Eugene “Cyclone” Hart who IBHOF Promoter and matchmaker said “Cyclone Hart would have knocked out Bernard Hopkins!” Hart was 30-9-1 with 28 knockouts of which 19 came at the start of his career. His first fight with another beloved Philly fighter “Bad” Bennie Briscoe was a classic per my brother who was there for their draw. This writer went to the rematch and Briscoe scored a first round stoppage.
Like other Philly boxers including “Willie the Worm” Monroe and Bobby “Boogaloo” Watts none got a title fight. Both Marvelous Marvin Hagler and then Eddie Gregory aka Eddie Mustafa Muhammad made their name in Philly fighting Hart. Jesse Hart has some skills his father didn’t but certainly doesn’t have his punching power!
The Philly gyms complain that Hopkins never donated anything to their gyms. I don’t think they are entitled to take Hopkins money but that is the reason they have no respect for him.
Hart is in a tough fight for Hart who is ranked No. 4 per Fight News rankings but Smith who fought the WBA champion Dmitry Bivol in his last fight for the title isn’t. So, what does Hart got to gain? Smith wins and he gets back into ratings.
One caller at the press conference call-in’s asked Hart if (Gilberto) Ramirez was in his future? Ramirez is No. 1 ranked in both the WBC and WBO giving up his WBO Super Middleweight title after defeating Hart twice. What kind of stupid question was that?