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Rafael: Stevenson will KO Dawson

By Eric Thomas: Dan Rafael of ESPN is picking Adonis Stevenson (20-1, 17 KO’s) to stop WBC light heavyweight champion Chad Dawson (31-2, 17 KO’s) and take his title on Saturday night at the Bell Centre, in Montreal, Canada.

Rafael thinks Stevenson has too much power for the 30-year-old Dawson and that will ultimately be the decider in this fight. If that turns out to be reality then it’ll be Dawson’s second straight knockout loss, as he was stopped by Andre Ward last September.

Rafael said in his chat at ESPN “I think Stevenson has a great shot for the KO win and I will make that pick.”

Rafael might be right with his prediction. Stevenson has a great shot of winning this fight because he’s got the power, the speed, hometown advantage and he’s catching Dawson at the exact right moment with him coming off of a 10th round knockout loss to Andre Ward.

Dawson might not be mentally back from that loss. It’s possible the defeat will have made Dawson second guess himself or make him gun shy enough to where he won’t want to let his shots go.

Dawson won’t be able to beat Stevenson if he’s afraid to throw his punches because Stevenson will walk him down and take him out. Dawson has to make Stevenson pay for any shots that he attempts to land and the only way he can do that is by letting his hands go.

This is a big step up for Stevenson and there’s really no way of knowing how he’ll do against a fighter as good as Dawson. As good as Stevenson is, he’s been facing lower level opposition his entire career.

He’s faced EPSN level opposition for the most part and probably the best guy he’s fought thus far is Don George. Dawson is a lot better than George, and this could be too big of a step for the 35-year-old Stevenson.

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