ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. -- Bernard Hopkins tagged himself "The Alien" heading into his Saturday scrap with relative unknown Karo Murat, a resident of Germany who emigrated from Iraq at age 12. We knew going in that Hopkins is a medical marvel, a specimen we're unlikely to see again anytime soon, and that Murat likely needed for Father Time to have visited Hopkins in the past couple of months to steal his mojo.
The soon-to-be 49-year-old Hopkins left A.C. with his amazing durability and longevity intact, while Murat left disappointed that B-Hop's skills didn't evaporate in front of 6,324 fans, the vast majority of whom seemed to appreciate a main event that surprised toward the upside.
What else, exactly, did we learn from Saturday's card held at Boardwalk Hall? Here are five:
1. All bow to Bernard
Hopkins has complained of late that he doesn't get the love from the masses and the media that he deserves. Well, hear this, Bernard: This writer loved your effort against Murat, a most entertaining rumble that vastly exceeded my own expectations. For a 48-year-old man to out-rumble such a rugged, chippy, bullish foe is a marvelous and wondrous feat. Hopkins landed 247 of 565 punches in the win, throwing more and connecting at a higher rate than the younger man (who landed 147 of 486).
2. Murat was no doormat
Some worried that Murat, 30, would show up for a paycheck when he talked like a starstruck tourist at the Wednesday media conference. Instead, against Hopkins he acted like a pre-Giuliani-era New York thug -- in a good way -- who could have been cast in "The Warriors." (Google it, young-'uns). Props to Murat for zigging when we thought he'd zag. Was his demeanor at the media event just schtick, meant to disarm the vet? If so, great performance from the "loser."
3. No one-and-done for "The Alien"
Writers and fans weren't taking to the new nickname Hopkins trotted out for this bout, but he can call himself whatever he wants if he continues to offer fight fans such fare. Hey, his skills and showings at this age are otherworldly. We will call Hopkins whatever he wants us to, frankly, out of respect for his magnificent run.
4. Joke of a judge
Add Kason Cheeks to your list of iffy judges. How Cheeks saw the Peter Quillin-Gabriel Rosado fight 90-80 for Quillin after nine-plus rounds was a matter of much debate on media row and, more widely, on Twitter. That bout was something like a draw, in my opinion, and nowhere near a shutout. How about new glasses for the holidays for Kason Cheeks.
5. Wilder needs seasoning
Heavyweight hopeful Deontay Wilder has pop -- no one denies this. But he could use some more time receiving the tutelage of trainer Mark Breland to get him to a place where he handles an awkward sort like Nicolai Firtha just a bit more handily, before he bites off more than he can chew against, say, a Klitschko brother.