51-year-old Bernard Hopkins to end career with December fight against Joe Smith

A legendary boxing career will come to an end at the Forum in Los Angeles on Dec. 17 when 51-year-old Bernard Hopkins fights one final time in a bout against Joe Smith Jr. on HBO.

Hopkins (55-7-2, 32 KOs) will make his 65th fight the last one of an incredible career during which he defended his IBF world middleweight title 19 times -- while picking up the WBO, WBC and WBA belts along the way to become the unified world champion. In 2006 he made the move to light heavyweight and held the WBC, WBA and IBF light heavyweight titles at different times and as recently as 2014.

The iron-chinned Hopkins is one of the greatest fighters of the last 25 years and has never been knocked out. In his most recent fight in 2014, at 49, Hopkins went 12 full rounds with one of the boxing world's hardest hitters in Sergey Kovalev.

Now he will make his final appearance in the ring against Smith (22-1-0, 18 KOs), who has not lost a fight since 2010 but has also never faced an opponent of the skill level of Hopkins -- who even at his advanced age (I'm not going to be the one to call him old) has plenty of ring ability left.

Hopkins will remain active in the boxing world as a partner with Oscar De La Hoya at Golden Boy Promotions and as a ringside analyst on HBO boxing broadcasts, but for one last time we get to watch the Executioner/Alien do what he's done better than most anyone for 28 years since his debut in 1988.

CBS Sports Writer

Robby Kalland covers college football and golf for CBS Sports; he also dabbles in boxing, mixed martial arts and other sports. Prior to joining CBS in 2015, Robby spent time working for the Atlanta Hawks,... Full Bio

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