Glen Johnson Stops Yusef Mack, Who’s Next?

By John G. Thompson - Glen “The Road Warrior” Johnson 50-13-2 (34 KO’s) showed why at the tender age of forty-one he still belongs in the upper echelons of the light heavyweight division with his sixth round TKO win over Yusef Mack 28-3-2. The former champion Johnson showed not age but beauty in setting a fast pace while also restraining himself at times, giving himself time to think and put down his opponent.

In the under card, highly decorated Cuban stars Guillermo Rigondeaux 5-0 (4 KO’s) and Yudel Jhonson 5-0 (3 KO’s) each scored first round knockouts against their opponents Adolfo Landeros 20-13-1 and Dorian Beaupierre 12-6-2. Neither opponent had any business being in the ring with these two Olympic medallists, Landeros having lost six of his last eight fights, and Beaupierre having taken the fight on eleven days notice and not having been in the ring since 2006. While Rigondeaux and Jhonson looked spectacular, they were meant to, and they should both be facing stiffer competition..

In the main event, Ed Parades 24-3-1 (15 KO’s) won the rematch of his draw with Joey Hernandez 15-1-1 in dramatic fashion, scoring a highlight reel left hook knockout in the second round. Hernandez had been lunging in with loaded shots and then holding on, winning the round with this strategy, until Parades timed him perfectly, handing Hernandez his first professional loss.

The co-main event may have stolen the show; however, if for no other reason than because at his advanced age, Glen Johnson (the underdog according to the Vegas odds) showed the world he deserves another shot at the title. The first round was close, though Johnson might have won it being that he was snapping Mack’s head back with a jab and pressing the action. Mack almost certainly won the second round staying on the outside and boxing effectively. Johnson’s legendary pace kicked in during the third round and the man eleven years younger was unable to keep up. Mack did do well in the fifth, possibly even landing the cleaner, and more effective shots.

The sixth round rendered the scoring irrelevant as Johnson used multiple left jabs to shift the guard of Mack, and then put him down with a hard right. Mack got up and Johnson pressed the action backing Mack into the ropes. Johnson then showed a bit of maturity by not plowing in as usual. Instead, Johnson took a breath, waited for his moment, and threw another perfect right, which put Mack down again. This time when Mack got up his eyes appeared glazed over. The action continued for a moment, until Johnson landed a left hook. Mack dropped to a knee, and though he got up quickly, the referee appropriately stopped the fight.

Glen Johnson showed that with age also comes experience. More importantly, he showed the heart of a champion and should be in line for another shot at the title. The light heavyweight division is full of talent, and a fight between him and Tavoris Cloud, Adrian Diaconu, Jean Pascal, or Gabriel Campillo (who was recently robbed of a well deserved victory) would all be highly entertaining fights. Of course a long awaited rematch with Bernard Hopkins (after B-Hop defeats Roy Jones, Jr.) might also entice Johnson, being that “The Executioner” is not only the Ring Magazine Light Heavyweight Champion, but the only man to have ever stopped “The Road Warrior.”

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Article posted on 07.02.2010

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