On October 15, 2011, Bernard Hopkins and Chad Dawson were supposed to provide definitive answers. Could a man in his late-40s still compete effectively against a tall southpaw in the prime of his life? Would Dawson get past his phlegmatic nature to create a pace fast enough to short-circuit "The Executioner's" master plan? Would it even be a worthy fight?
Instead, those who bought the pay-per-view were given an injury-marred exercise that created more questions than answers. The two-round TKO for Dawson rendered on fight night was subsequently changed to a no-contest that allowed Hopkins (46 yrs., 272 days) to retain his WBC light heavyweight title and surpass George Foreman (46 yrs., 113 days) as the oldest man ever to retain a major championship.
That a second fight is happening at all is an upset of sorts, but will the rematch finally solve the mystery or will chaos again be the order of the day? Those queries can only be answered on fight night, but the CompuBox numbers do offer clues as to what might unfold. Dawson is a surprisingly-wide 3 ½-1 favorite.