Boxing


Is Kevin Johnson Ready For Vitali Klitschko? In December We Could Find Out!

by James Slater - First the bad news; the clash of unbeaten heavyweight contenders that was set for October 10th, between Kevin Johnson and Odlanier Solis is off. The good news: the reason is because "KingPin" is at the top of the list for possible December opponents for WBC champion Vitali Klitschko.

"Dr Iron Fist" is so confident (over confident?) that he will see off unbeaten slugger Chris Arreola on September 26th, that he is apparently looking ahead to fighting again on December 12th in Germany - and the word from Dan Rafael over at ESPN.com is that Johnson might get the shot..

This begs the question, who will Cuba defector and former Olympian Solis now face on the Top Rank "Latin Fury 12" bill in October? Solis is still down on BoxRec as fighting on the date, but a TBA now lurks next to his name instead of Johnson's name. Regardless of this (and Johnson is not likely to be overly concerned about what Solis does now), we must ask the question: is 30-year-old Johsnon, 22-0-1(9) ready for a fight with the elder but arguably more formidable of the two Klitschko brothers?

Some will no doubt insist that Johnson is still in need of further fights that will take him up in class - the Solis fight, for example, would have been perfect according to many fans. A pro for just over six years, "KingPin" has recently begun sitting down on his punches more and hitting with power. But as good as he's looked against guys like Devin Vargas (TKO 6) and faded former champ Bruce Seldon (TKO 5), Johnson against Klitschko would be something else entirely. Then again, the 30-year-old from Atlanta, Georgia would surely argue that his credentials are no less worthy than those of Arreola, who gets his chance two weeks today of course.

As for the reigning WBC king; is he merely to be applauded for wanting to stay so busy by looking at another fight after Arreola, or is Vitali making a mistake by looking too far ahead? Surely it would be foolish of him if he were to underestimate "The Nightmare," a tough nut who can bang and is currently training hard so as to be able to do so for the full 12-rounds on Sept. 26th. Even if Arreola were not to beat Klitschko but was able to hurt him and make his 38-year-old body feel sore for quite a while, would another fight, less than three months later, be a good idea for Vitali?

One thing we can agree on, though, is the fact that the heavyweight division is getting pretty exciting once again. I'm sure everyone but Odlanier Solis would agree.

Article posted on 12.09.2009



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