"Bad" Chad Dawson secured the WBC light-heavyweight title on April 28, defeating Bernard "The Executioner" Hopkins via majority decision at the Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, NJ. Judges Dick Flaherty and Steve Weisfeld rightly scored the fight 117-111 in favor of Dawson, while Luis Rivera scored the fight 114-114. Given how one-sided the fight was, Rivera's scorecard is a little unsettling.
As expected, Bernard tried his usual tactics against Dawson, doing everything from holding to sneaking in a few head butts. Bernard eventually busted Dawson open with an "accidental" head butt during the fourth round, but the challenger kept his composure, sticking to his game plan and out-boxing the 47 year old Hopkins.
Dawson length was certainly a factor during the fight, as he controlled the pace of the fight, mainly with his jab and a stiff cross. He clearly dominated a vast majority of the fight, and by the latter rounds, it was pretty clear who would emerge victorious.
"It feels good," Dawson told Max Kellerman about his victory after the fight. "I took a lot of head butts; actually my head hurts right now. He's a great fighter. He's going down in the hall of fame. Now is the time to step my game up another notch. I give all credit to Bernard; he fought a hell of a fight. Like I said, he's a dirty fighter though. If you can get through that, you can get through anything."
Dawson didn't put on the best performance of his career against Hopkins, but he certainly showed some new found maturity during the fight. From start to finish, Bernard tried to get under his skin, yet he never took the bait. Even when opened up by a questionable head butt, Dawson kept his cool, and the cut didn't seem to bother him in anyway.
Dawson now has his sights set on Andre Ward, and he's hoping to set something up in the near future.
"I would love a fight with Andre Ward," Dawson added. "I think that makes for a great fight. I can make 168, or we can do it at 175 catch-weight. It doesn't matter to me. I want to make my statement; I want everyone to know who I am."
Fight and fighter information from BoxRec.com and HBO.
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