By Derek Bonnett
On Saturday, June 8, Chad Dawson returned to the Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec, Canada for the third time in his career to defend his WBC light heavyweight title against hard punching super middleweight contender Adonis "Superman" Stevenson. Previously at the Bell Centre, Dawson lost a technical decision to Jean Pascal in his first defeat and then won a decision over Adrian Diaconu to put himself back in the title hunt. It was Dawson’s first bout since an ill-chosen venture to the super middleweight division to meet P4P elite Andre Ward in a contest which led to Dawson’s second defeat. The questions going into this one centered mostly around Dawson’s mental state following such a comprehensive defeat to Ward and was a good idea to match the light heavyweight champion with a contender with such raw punching power.
The answers came quickly in this one.
Stevenson, 35, beautifully clad in Kronk gold, dropped Dawson with a thunderous left cross about 1:15 seconds into the first round. Dawson, 30, crashed to the canvas hard. A glossy eyed and wobbly legged Dawson rose at the count of seven, but the champion looked in no shape to continue and the referee intervened to call a halt to the contest. The effort truly epitomized the term one punch knockout.
An elated Adonis Stevenson could not find enough arms to embrace him as the scintillating title win. Dawson could not accept the defeat and quickly found a culprit to blame in the referee. However, boxing fans did not need to see Dawson pursued by a raging Stevenson looking to finish a job which was already done.
Stevenson enhanced his resume to 21-1 (18) in capturing the WBC light heavyweight championship. Dawson crashed to 31-3 (17) and is left with an uncertain future.
Also on the card, Yuriorkis Gamboa won the interim WBA lightweight championship with a unanimous decision over Darleys Perez by scores of 116-111, 116-111, and 115-112. Gamboa debuted at lightweight with great success and raised his record to 23-0 (16). Perez was decked in the second round and fell to 28-1 (19).
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