Kevin Johnson Scores 9th-Round TKO Over A Game Alex Leapai
By James Slater - Earlier today in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia, Atlanta’s Kevin “King Pin” Johnson turned in one of the best performances of his career to TKO a brave and game Alex Leapai in the 9th-round of a good action fight. Dropping the warrior known as “Lionheart” in the 9th, Johnson got the win at the 2-minutes and 22 seconds mark.
Article posted on 01.04.2012
32-year-old Johnson is now 26-1-1(12). Leapai, the same age, is now 25-4-3(20).
Both men had promised a KO win leading into today’s fight, and both guys tried their best to deliver on the prediction. Leapai, giving away a fair amount of height and reach, bulled the action early on, succeeding in trapping Johnson on the ropes and scoring with eye-catching hooks with both hands. An all-action affair was shaping up and for a while it looked as though Johnson might be out-toughed and beaten..
But in the 3rd, Johnson showed his class as he unloaded with hard and fast head shots of his own, badly wobbling the local hero. From then on, though Leapai was still game and still dangerous, “King Pin” lived up to his nickname and steadily wore Leapai down. At times it was hard to see what was keeping Leapai up.
Johnson then closed the show in style in the 9th, winning the IBF Australasia belt with the win.
Johnson, a huge disappointment in his big fight with WBC heavyweight king Vitali Klitschko, looked a totally different, far more aggressive fighter today. Okay, no-one is comparing Leapai with the mighty “Dr. Iron Fist,” but Johnson proved that he can be a real force to be reckoned with when he fights with full self belief. Earlier in the week, in speaking with Fightnews.com, a cocky Johnson said he’d “take this boy [Leapai] to school” and then look to “beat everyone in my era.”
Asked if he would like to fight Klitschko again, Johnson, curiously, said “I don’t want to, but I’ll have to.”
It will be interesting to see who Johnson fights next. Having come off a layoff of almost ten months and having travelled to Australia for a risky fight, Johnson earned some respect with today’s fine victory. Leapai, who had won his previous nine fights and was beginning to get noticed on the world stage, must now go back to the drawing board. The exciting warrior might be able to come again.
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