Soliman Decisions Johnsen
In the bronze medal match of the reality series “The Contender,” Australian super middleweight Sam Soliman (35-10, 13 KOs) earned an easy six-round unanimous decision over American Wayne Johnsen (17-3, 9 KOs) on Tuesday night at the TD Banknorth Garden, in Boston, Massachusetts. The final judges’ scores were 60-54, 60-54 and 59-55, all for Soliman. On the line was $50,000, which Soliman earned for defeating the 30 year-old Johnsen. The outcome was never in doubt, as Soliman using his awkward and unconventional fighting style, along with a high volume of punches, to overwhelm Johnson with punches.
In the first two rounds, Soliman dominated Johnson from both the outside and inside, hitting him with long range shots, and then coming in close and tagging him with frequent uppercuts to the head. Johnson, a much less experienced fighter with only four years of professional fights on his record, found it hard to land any of his shots due to Soliman’s constant movement.
When he did attempt to land, Soliman would easily duck and avoid the shot, and making him pay by tagging him with stinging counter punches. On the inside, Soliman would often hold and hit with great effectiveness. By the 3rd round, Johnson looked dejected, not seeing to know what precisely he would do to get back into the fight.
In rounds three and four, Soliman continued raining punches on Johnson, hitting him with a wide variety of punches consisting of hooks, uppercuts, straight lefts, rights and jabs. By now, Johnsen’s nose was pouring blood, courtesy of Soliman’s hard shots. There were a large number of clinches, most initiated by Soliman, that further made it difficult for the more conventional Johnsen to get off his punches. Even worse, was the fact that Soliman often ripped powerful combinations the second the two of them broke from their clinches, often hitting the slower Johnsen before he could react.
In the sixth round, Johnsen came out firing away, realizing that he was far behind in the fight and needed a knockout to win. To his credit, he landed a perfect fight hand that appeared to briefly stun Soliman. However, Johnsen was unable to follow up with any additional big shots, letting Soliman off the hook. For the remainder of the round, Soliman easily boxed Johnsen and finished strong. The final punch stats were 145/363 for Soliman and 69/281 for Johnsen.
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