(CNN) -- Bernard Hopkins erased the legendary George Foreman from the record books when he became boxing's oldest world champion with a points decision over Canadian Jean Pascal to win the World Boxing Council (WBC) light heavyweight title.
Hopkins, who is 126 days beyond his 46th birthday, won the unanimous verdict of the judges after 12 rounds in the Bell Centre arena in Montreal Saturday night.
The two had fought to a draw in December 18 in Quebec to deny Hopkins the crown.
"I have always fought with heart and courage to get a guy out of there," Hopkins told gathered reporters.
"You save the best for last. I want to go out a winner and not beat up, punch drunk and not broke."
Hopkins (52-5-2) is 24 days older than Foreman was when his fellow American defended the International Boxing Federation (IBF) title against Germany's Axel Schulz in 1995 with a split-decision victory.
Foreman claimed the title the year before when he knocked out Michael Moorer in the 10th round to win the IBF and World Boxing Association (WBA) heavyweight crowns on November 5, 1994.
Hopkins built up a big points lead through the middle rounds, but came under pressure in the closing stages as the 26-year-old Pascal rallied with home support.
"I am going to fight until I am 50," said Hopkins. "I didn't feel like I am 46 but closer to 36.
"I worked hard for this. I have been accused of being boring but I just wanted to buy time and buy years. Before I leave this game you are going to see the best fights of Hopkins' career."
Pascal acknowledged he had been beaten by the better fighter but said he would learn from his loss.
"He's a great champion. These two fights will help take me to the next level. I learned a lot from Bernard and his style"