Felix "Tito" Trinidad increased his record by KO
'ing the young champion Fernando Vargas
to 40-0 and 33 KOs. Felix Trinidad's next move was to jump into the middleweight
division in a unifying bout with Bernard Hopkins
. After trouncing on Hopkins and becoming the first undisputed middleweight, Trinidad planned on fighting Roy Jones, Jr
. This would have been a tremendous fight, earning Jones, Trinidad and Don King
millions. Many people have Jones and Tito as the top two fighters in the world pound for pound
Unfortunately, Bernard "The Executioner" Hopkins had other plans. Following the blueprint laid out by Oscar De La Hoya (in a fight in which many thought Oscar won), Bernard Hopkins dismantled Felix Trinidad's tremendous offense. By avoiding Trinidad's main weapon, his left hook, Hopkins gained the ability to slowly wear down the unbeaten fighter. By the late rounds of the fight "Tito" was looking tired, and with more than a minute to go in the final round was sent to the floor. By the count of six Trinidad's coach/father was in the ring stopping the fight. Bernard Hopkins is now the undisputed Middleweight champion of the world and well on his way to becoming one of the greatest middleweights ever.
On May 11, 2002, Tito Trinidad stepped back into the ring for the first time since his defeat to Hopkins. He fought tough (but unremarkable) Hacine Cherifi of France. The fight took place in Puerto Rico, where Tito is more popular than Michael Jordan ever was here. Trinidad gave the crowd a good show by thoroughly destroying Cherifi in 4 rounds.
On July 2, 2002 Felix Trinidad suddenly announced his retirement. He stated that there aren't any more fights that would enhance his legacy and continuing to fight endangers his health. Of course, in Boxing, "retirement" is never for sure. Felix may only stay retired until he gets a shot at a rematch with Hopkins.
Updated July 3, 2002