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Dawson beats Johnson for the 2nd time, gets little credit

dawson43445By Dave Lahr: For the second time in a year, light heavyweight Chad Dawson (29-0, 17 KO’s) defeated 40-year-old Glen Johnson by a 12 round unanimous decision and for the second time, Dawson, 27, got little credit for having done so. It’s unfortunate, because Dawson boxing incredibly well in beating Johnson by a decision, but there is barely a peep about the win in the boxing community.

What’s more, two of the judges scored the fight closely, giving Dawson the victory by a narrow margin of 115-113. How two judges both could score the same for a fight like this is beyond me, since the bout looked to be about as one-sided as you’d ever see. I couldn’t give Johnson more than couple of rounds because of his slow hands and his plodding style of fighting.

Johnson looked good in the 1st round, but fought poorly in the rest of the fight. Johnson’s ability to connect with his shots was minimal after the opening round. The rest of the fight saw a pattern of Johnson moving slowly forward at a snail’s pace and getting hit with blazing fast combinations and jabs from Dawson. It was nice to see, but disappointing that Dawson was urged to take the fight to begin with.

Dawson had already fought and beaten the 40-year-old Johnson last year, and also been forced to beat 40-year-old Antonio Tarver twice. Tarver, the International Boxing Federation light heavyweight champion at the time of his first fight with Dawson last year in October, had a rematch clause. So when Dawson defeated Tarver in a one-sided 12 round decision, Dawson had little choice but to fight him again.

Then after beating Tarver about as bad as he did in the first fight, the pressure came for Dawson to fight Johnson a second time. I couldn’t see the point, and didn’t view it as a bout that would further Dawson’s career any. After all, he already beat Johnson once, what could there be to gain by beating him again? But fight him he did, and as you would expect, Dawson isn’t being given much credit for having done so.

Dawson now needs to consider moving out of the light heavyweight division to the super middleweight division. There’s few popular fighters for Dawson to fight at light heavyweight other than Tavoris Cloud, an untested slugger who is largely unknown to the boxing public. Cloud looks to be a lesser version of Johnson, and it would be probably as one-sided as Dawson’s win over Johnson last Saturday night. Dawson likely won’t get a lot of credit for beating Cloud.

Then there’s WBC light heavyweight champion Jean Pascal for Dawson to fight. But that’s not exactly an interesting bout either, because Pascal was beaten last year by Carl Froch. And that would be like Dawson getting sloppy seconds. Pascal isn’t a popular fighter and you could expect for Dawson to get little attention for beating Pascal.

If Dawson does move down in weight, he’ll not have a lot of options at super middleweight other than taking on IBF champion Lucian Bute, because the other top super middleweights are currently tied up in the Super Six tournament. A fight against Bute would be great if Dawson could land the fight.

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