Hopkins, who turns 47 on Jan. 15, became the oldest boxer in history to win a major world title in May with a unanimous-decision victory over WBC and Ring magazine light heavyweight champion Jean Pascal. He defends it Saturday against Chad Dawson at Staples Center in Los Angeles (9 p.m. ET, HBO PPV). Currently the No. 6-ranked boxer in SI.com's pound-for-pound ratings , Hopkins was 192 days older than George Foreman, who was 45 years and 10 months when he knocked out Michael Moorer for the heavyweight title in 1994. Here's a look at 40 athletes who excelled past their 40th birthdays.
2 of 40Damian Strohmeyer/SI
At 45, Moyer was the oldest active player in Major League Baseball when he logged a team-high 16 wins for the World Series champion Philadelphia Phillies. In 2010, the lefty junkballer became the oldest player in history to pitch a shutout with a two-hit masterpiece against the Braves. Moyer, who turned 48 on Nov. 17, will miss the 2011 season after undergoing elbow surgery and hopes to return in '12.
3 of 40Simon Bruty/SI
The NFL's only grandfather hit 40 midway through the 2009 season, just days after beating the Packers on Monday Night Football to become the first quarterback to beat each of the league's 32 franchises. He led the Vikings to the NFC title game, where they lost in overtime to the Saints, and finished third overall in Pro Bowl voting behind Peyton Manning and Drew Brees.
4 of 40Barry Sweet/Zuma Press/Icon SMI
At 40, Couture outpointed Tito Ortiz for the UFC's undisputed light heavyweight championship, becoming the promotion's first and only two-division titleholder. Now 47, the Everett, Wash., native continues to campaign in the UFC's heavyweight division.
5 of 40Robert Beck/SI
Rivera turned 40 shortly after leading the Yankees to the 2009 World Series title. He retired a career-high 24 consecutive batters in June 2010 and made an 11th All-Star appearance with a 1.05 ERA, 0.64 WHIP and 20 saves in 22 opportunities during the first half. The future Hall of Famer agreed to a two-year, $30 million contract to remain with the Yankees on Dec. 14.
6 of 40KAZUHIRO NOGI/AFP/Getty Images
Kimiko Date Krumm
Date Krumm was named the WTA's Most Improved Player in 1992, cracked the Top 10 in '94 and quit the sport in '96. Since returning from a 12-year retirement in 2008 at 37, she's enjoyed success against players half her age: the Tokyo native turned 40 during this year's Japan Open, upsetting the likes of Maria Sharapova and Daniela Hantuchova en route to the final.
7 of 40Damian Strohmeyer/SI
The all-time hits leader among Dominican players, Franco became the oldest regular position player in Major League Baseball history as a 49-year-old first baseman with the Braves in 2007.
8 of 40JAVIER SORIANO/AFP/Getty Images
The French road cyclist, who is still competing at 52, has won 10 national titles since turning 40. She won Olympic bronze at 42 in the time trial at the Sydney Games. Longo later competed in her seventh Olympics in Beijing at 51 and placed fourth in the time trial, two seconds off the podium.
9 of 40David E. Klutho/SI, Jamie Sabau/Getty Images
The three-time Norris Trophy winner lifted his first Stanley Cup with Montreal in 1986 and his second with Detroit in 2002, just months after his 40th birthday. He became the second oldest player in NHL history during the '09-10 season, when he was called up from the AHL's Chicago Wolves to play for the Atlanta Thrashers at 48.
10 of 40Simon Bruty/SI, Heinz Kluetmeier/SI (inset)
The oldest swimmer in history to earn a place on the U.S. Olympic team at 41 in 2008, Torres competed in the 50-meter freestyle, 4x100-meter medley relay and 4x100-meter freestyle relay in Beijing and won the silver medal in all three events.
11 of 40Chuck Solomon/SI
Clemens went 61-33 with a 2.99 ERA in five complete seasons after turning 40 in 2002, winning the NL Cy Young Award with the Astros in '04. But he became one of the faces of baseball's steroid era after his name was mentioned 81 times in the Mitchell Report.
12 of 40Manny Millan/SI
In 2003, Navratilova won the mixed doubles titles at the Australian Open and Wimbledon alongside Leander Paes, becoming the oldest-ever Grand Slam champion at 46 years and eight months. She won a first-round singles match at Wimbledon the following year, becoming the oldest player to win a professional singles match in the Open Era. Navratilova's final major title in mixed doubles came with Bob Bryan at the 2006 U.S. Open, just one month shy of her 50th birthday.
13 of 40Brad Mangin/SI
Bonds turned 40 midway through the 2004 season, when he batted .362, slugged .812, broke his own records for walks (232) and on-base percentage (.609) -- and bagged his fourth consecutive National League MVP award. The left fielder, who bested Hank Aaron's career home run record in 2007, also holds the all-time mark for most round-trippers past the age of 40 (79).
14 of 40Fred Vuich/SI
The Fijian has won 23 PGA Tour titles since turning 40 in 2003 -- including the Masters in '04 -- breaking Sam Snead's longstanding record. Singh also captured the FedEx Cup in '08.
15 of 40Robert Beck/SI
The Big Unit was 40 when he spun the 17th perfect game in baseball history against Atlanta on May 18, 2004. He remains the oldest pitcher in MLB history to turn the trick.
16 of 40David E. Klutho/SI
Rice turned 40 during the 2002 season, when he caught 92 passes for 1,211 yards and seven touchdowns and helped lead the Raiders to Super Bowl XXXVII. His 48-yard score in the fourth quarter of Oakland's 48-21 loss to Tampa Bay made him the first player to catch a touchdown in four different Super Bowls.
17 of 40Manny Millan/SI
In 1994, the 40-year-old Parish averaged 11.7 points and 7.3 rebounds in his final season with the Celtics. He played the next two years in Charlotte before joining the Bulls as a deep reserve for the '96-97 season, where he collected a fourth NBA championship ring.
18 of 40John Iacono/SI
At 45, Foreman regained the heavyweight title he'd lost to Muhammad Ali more than two decades earlier with a knockout of Michael Moorer on Nov. 5, 1994. He'd fight four more times before retiring shortly before his 49th birthday.
19 of 40ANTONIO SCORZA/AFP/Getty Images
The Cameroonian icon became the oldest player to appear in a World Cup in 1994 at 42 -- and the oldest goalscorer in the competition's history with a goal against Russia in the group stage.
20 of 40Rich Clarkson/SI
At 41, the Irish middle-distance runner became the first quadragenarian to run a sub-four-minute mile at Harvard University's indoor track on Feb. 20, 1994.
21 of 40Richard Mackson/SI
Less than two months after celebrating his 50th birthday in 2003, Stadler won events on both the PGA and Champions Tour in back-to-back weeks.
22 of 40Getty Images
Winfield drove in 108 runs for the Toronto Blue Jays in 1992 at 40, sparking the club to its first-ever World Series title. The Hall of Famer was the oldest player to log a 100-RBI season at the time.
23 of 40AP
The hard-throwing righty turned 40 prior to the 1987 season, when he led the majors in both ERA (2.76) and strikeouts (270) and finished fifth in the Cy Young voting as a member of the Astros. He joined the Rangers during the following offseason, throwing no-hitters in 1990 and '91.
24 of 40Manny Millan/SI
After turning 40 in April 1987, the longtime Laker was a key player on back-to-back NBA championship teams in '87 and '88. He helped L.A. to a third consecutive Western Conference title in '89 before retiring.
25 of 40Focus on Sport/Getty Images
The winningest knuckleball pitcher of all time, Niekro piled up a major league record 121 victories past the age of 40. He retired following the 1987 season at 48.
26 of 40Mike Powell/Getty Images
The Hall of Fame jockey was 54 when he became the oldest man to win the Kentucky Derby in 1986, piloting 18-to-1 longshot Ferdinand.
27 of 40John Iacono/SI
The Golden Bear became the oldest Masters winner at 46, posting a six-under par 30 on the back nine to claim his 18th and final major championship in 1986.
28 of 40Dan Baliotti/SI
The only player to have competed in the NHL in five different decades, Howe played his final game for the Detroit Red Wings in 1971 at 43 -- before playing six more years with the WHA's Houston Aeros from 1973 through '79. He returned to the NHL as a 52-year-old when the New England Whalers became the Hartford Whalers for the '79-80 season, playing all 80 games and scoring 15 goals.
29 of 40Heinz Kluetmeier/SI
Player captured three PGA Tour titles in 1978 at 42, including his third Masters. He nearly became the oldest major champion at 48, finishing just behind Lee Trevino at the 1984 PGA Championship. He excelled on the Senior Tour into his sixties.
30 of 40Tony Triolo/SI
Blanda, who played a record 26 seasons of pro football spanning four decades, came off the bench as the Raiders' quarterback into his mid-40s and hung around as a backup signal-caller and kicker until he was 48. He retired in 1976.
31 of 40Cliff Welch/Icon SMI
The Hall of Fame goaltender, renowned for popularizing the facemask and backstopping the Montreal Canadiens to six Stanley Cups, concluded his 18 NHL seasons with eight games as a Boston Bruin in 1972-73, going 7-1-0 with a 2.00 GAA. He joined the WHA's Edmonton Oilers at 46 and played in 31 games during the 1974-75 season, posting a 15-14-1 mark with a 3.32 GAA.
32 of 40Bob Thomas/Getty Images
The longtime No. 1-ranked American was 41 at Wimbledon in 1969, when he rallied for a 22-24, 1-6, 16-14, 6-3, 11-9 over Charlie Pasarell in the longest match ever played until the John Isner-Nicolas Mahut marathon in 2010. He became the oldest player to win a pro tournament in 1972, bagging the Des Moines Open title just three months shy of his 44th birthday.
33 of 40AP
The Hall of Fame knuckleballer played in the the All-Star Game in 1970 as a member of the Atlanta Braves, less than two weeks before turning 48.
34 of 40AP
Considered by some the greatest defenseman of all-time -- his seven Norris Trophy wins rank behind only Bobby Orr -- Harvey skated in 70 games for the 1968-69 Blues at 44. He concluded his 19-year NHL career with two goals, 20 assists and a plus-11 rating for an expansion team that reached, but lost, the Stanley Cup Final for the second of three straight years.
35 of 40Lee Balterman
The Hall of Fame goaltender was 42 when he led the Toronto Maple Leafs to the Stanley Cup in 1967. He played until he was 45.
36 of 40AP
At 42 (we think) in 1948, Paige helped the Indians win the World Series as the oldest rookie in MLB history. He'd later represent the St. Louis Browns in the All-Star Game in '52 and '53. The righty made one final major league appearance for the Kansas City Athletics in 1965 -- at 58 years old.
37 of 40AP
The late-blooming Moore (left), who holds the record for most career knockouts (131), won the light heavyweight crown at 39 with his 1952 victory over Joey Maxim and held the title long into his forties. His only two losses during the remainder of the decade came at heavyweight, when he moved up to fight Rocky Marciano and Floyd Patterson.
38 of 40Alvis Upitis/Getty Images
Juan Manuel Fangio
The Argentine Formula One driver, whom many still consider to the greatest of all time, won the World Drivers' Championship five times between 1951 and '57 -- his first coming at 40, his last at 46.
39 of 40Rich Pilling/MLB Photos/Getty Images
Luis Tiant Sr.
Tiant (right), the father of longtime major leaguer with the same name, played in the Negro Leagues from 1930 through '47. At 40, the Havana native logged a perfect record in league games while leading the New York Cubans to the pennant.
40 of 40Hulton Archive/Getty Images
The theatrical Tilden, who was the dominant men's player of the 1920s, bagged 10 major titles before leaving the amateur ranks in 1930. He remained a star attraction after turning 40 in '33, filling arenas like Madison Square Garden for high-stakes matches.
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