Dawson vs. Pascal: Chad's time to shine
By Nick Fleming: On August 14 Interim WBC Light heavyweight belt holder Chad Dawson, will face off with WBC champion Jean Pascal in Montreal for the undisputed WBC Light heavyweight world title. This is an interesting matchup and it’s good to see two of the weights best boxers getting it on.
Article posted on 10.08.2010
Chad Dawson has been on the rise for a few years now. He really made his name fighting and beating the ageing duo of Glen Johnson and Antonio Tarver. These guys were both (and to an extent still are), big names in the boxing world. Yet despite beating both these guys twice, in his last 4 outings, Dawson is still struggling for universal recognition. This lack of recognition is somewhat puzzling, I mean he seems to have everything going for him. He’s young, unbeaten, American, and extremely talented. Floyd Mayweather was even heard to have stated that he believed, obviously after Mayweather himself, that Dawson was the finest p4p fighter in the game today. It was this lack of drawing power which many people believe cost him a mega-bucks showdown with Welsh two-weight world champ Joe Calzaghe, a few years ago. Maybe more than any other fighter at the moment Dawson is feeling the effects of the current economic climate.
However, this fight may well offer ‘Bad Chad’ the opportunity to garner some long overdue recognition. Jean Pascal has been on a terrific run of late. Since being outgunned by Carl Froch for the Cobras 168lb WBC belt in 2008, Pascal has moved up to 175lb and won his last four fights, including two wins over the previously unbeaten Adrian Diaconu for the WBC world title.
Many of the criticisms I hear of Dawson are based on the belief that he’s a boring fighter who has made his name beating old men and that he looked bad, and struggled past an old Glen Johnson in their first encounter. This is the exact reason why the Pascal fight is an ideal opportunity for Chad to make a statement. Unlike Tarver and Johnson, Pascal is indisputably in his ‘prime’ years. Should Dawson beat Pascal, there can be no disclaimer next to his win regarding his opponent’s age. But maybe more important than Pascal’s age his fighting style. You see Pascal is a guy who comes to mix it up. He’s not gun shy or afraid to fight up close in the pocket, and take shots in order to land his own. It is excitement which endears fans to certain fighters. This is why the late Arturo Gatti (RIP) enjoyed such strong support despite his lack of real quality. Because he was exciting, people loved to watch him fight!
Pascal is a slick fighter who can slip and counter shots from his ‘philly shell’ stance. He is an awkward opponent for any man. However, he has many flaws. As stated he was comfortably outgunned and outpointed by Carl Froch back in December 2008. Pascal has looked stronger at the higher weight, and his form has clearly improved since his loss to Froch. It appears as if he learned a lot from his one and only loss. However, I can’t look past Dawson for this one. His quick hands and flashy combinations will, in my opinion, be too much for Pascal to handle.
If Dawson can beat Pascal in an exciting fight and look good doing it, then maybe, just maybe he will start to get the recognition his talent deserves.
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