When Chad Dawson and Glen Johnson meet for a second time on November 7, the WBC's interim light heavyweight title will be on the line. (Photo via www.wbcboxing.net)
When Chad Dawson and Glen Johnson meet for a second time on November 7, the WBC's interim light heavyweight title will be on the line, putting the winner a step closer to a shot at current WBC titlist Jean Pascal.
Dawson (28-0, 17 KO) is coming off of back-to-back dominant wins over Antonio Tarver, while the 40-year old Johnson (49-12-2, 33 KO) has taken home two stay-busy wins over Aaron Norman and Daniel Judah since his controversial April 2008 loss to Dawson. I scored that fight a draw (114-114), and all the official cards went to Dawson (116-112 three times). There are many who feel Johnson won the fight, as he was the aggressor and appeared to do more damage.
Dawson previously held the WBC title, defending it against Johnson the first time around, but vacated it to fight Tarver for the IBF and IBO straps last October. He has now given up the IBF title to fight Johnson again, but the IBO title is still in Dawson's possession.
As for Pascal (23-1, 15 KO), he'll make the first defense of the title he won in June when he faces mandatory challenger Silvio Branco (59-9-2, 36 KO) on September 25 in Montreal. Branco lost a decision to Stipe Drews in 2007, then beat Peter Venacio six months later, in October of that year. He's won three more times in bouts against mediocre opposition since then. Pascal will be a heavy favorite against the 42-year old Italian.
If Johnson beats Dawson, I could certainly see Pascal-Johnson happening. Glen will fight anyone. But if it's Dawson, he might well not even be interested. Pascal is only a draw in Montreal, and even then he's not quite Lucian Bute or anything. Dawson-Pascal is an interesting fight, sure, but it might not be the easiest sell to either fighter, their management, or a major network.