Boxing

48-year-old Hopkins to defend title against Murat

Brooklyn, NY (Sports Network) - IBF Light Heavyweight champion Bernard Hopkins will return to the ring at Barclays Center to defend his title against No. 1 contender Karo Murat.

The bout is scheduled for Saturday, July 13.

The 48-year-old Hopkins (53-6-2, 32 KO) will become the oldest fighter in history to make his initial title defense. He defeated Travis Cloud at Barclays Center back in March to win the belt.

"Murat has nothing to lose and everything to gain by fighting me," said Hopkins. "He knows he is fighting a 48-year-old, but he has to understand that there aren't any other 48-year-olds like me. I keep saying 'I'm different' because it is true and I'm going to prove it once again on July 13. I don't know a lot about Murat, which makes him a dangerous competitor, but after over two decades in this sport, there isn't anything I haven't seen, so I plan on showing the world that I can face anyone at any time and be victorious."

Hopkins is the longest reigning middleweight champion in boxing history, and since reinventing himself as a light heavyweight following his 40th birthday, he has captured three world titles.

The 29-year-old Murat (25-1-1, 15 KO) has won several regional titles since becoming a pro in 2006. It's been nearly three years since his only loss, which occurred against Nathan Cleverly in 2010.

05/19 20:06:16 ET