Chad Dawson defeated his legendary nemesis Bernard Hopkins in dominating fashion and On September 8, live on HBO, the 6-foot-1 southpaw has his sights set on an even greater challenge as he moves down a weight class to take on the best fighter that the 168-pound division has to offer, Andre Ward.
Ward has been recognized as the premier fighter of the division after dismantling opponent's one by one on the way to becoming the Super Six Tournament Champion.
I recently had the opportunity to chat with Chad and here's what he had to say:
CraveOnline: Hey Chad. How are you?
Chad Dawson: I'm good. Yourself?
CraveOnline: I'm pretty good, thanks. First off I'd like to congratulate you on that dominating performance you had against Bernard Hopkins.
Dawson: Thank you.
CraveOnline: No problem. You'll be facing the best super middleweight in the world, Andre Ward, on September 8th. It seems like you both have huge mutual respect for one another and I'd like to know two things. What do you respect the most about Andre Ward the fighter and what do you respect the most about Andre Ward the man?
Dawson: Andre Ward is a great fighter. I respect everything he has done in the ring. He won a gold medal in the olympics for the United States. I respect his family life, he's a family man. He loves his kids, he loves his wife like myself. We have a lot in common when you put it that way, when it comes to family life. I definitely respect that.
CraveOnline: What'd you think of his last fight against Carl Froch?
Dawson: Good fight. There wasn't that much excitement in the fight. It was a good fight, he won the fight easy. I think in the Super Six Tournament he showed he could deal with different styles and different type of fighters. He definitely showed he deserves to be the super middleweight champ of the world.
CraveOnline: You're fighting Ward in his own weight class and you're also fighting him in his hometown of Oakland. Do you relish the role of the underdog?
Dawson: Yeah. This is the first time in my career that I've ever been an underdog but underdog gets the word. I'm going into the ring to make history. I wanna be the first fighter ever to come down a weight class after winning a world title in another weight class and then win another world title. I got a lot at stake,he's got a lot at stake. I think it just makes for a great fight. The fact that we both have a lot at stake here.
CraveOnline: Obviously you have a reach and height advantage going into the fight. What other advantages do you see yourself having?
Dawson: I definitely I have the hand speed advantage. People have been saying they think they're hands are faster than mine but I don't see it, I don't think so. The night of the fight you'll see I'm down to 168 pounds and you'll see the hand speed come back. I'm light and I'm fast right now. My hand speed is definitely where it needs to be. I'm just looking to go out there and show everybody that I am a more dominant fighter than Andre Ward.
CraveOnline: Let's say you defeat Ward. Do you see yourself staying at 168 or going back to light heavy?
Dawson: I don't know yet. I think that those guys at 168 pounds are coming to 175 very soon so when they do, if they decide to do that I'll be right there at 175. I can't rule out the fact that I might become a big fight at 168 and I might be interested in or they might be another fight at light heavyweight that I'm interested in so I don't know. I think they're going to give me 10 days after I win the belt at 168 to figure out if I wanna keep that title or let the light heavyweight title go. I don't know. It's going to be a big decision.
CraveOnline: What will happen on September 8th?
Dawson: Chad Dawson. Unanimous Decision. I will over power Andre Ward. Out jab him. Out box him. Out punch him.
CraveOnline: Alright Chad. Thank you and good luck.
Dawson: Thank you.
Chad Dawson (31-1, 17KOs) will be facing Super Middleweight Champion Andre Ward (25-0, 13KOs) live this Saturday night only on HBO.
Photo Credit: Josh Holmberg /Icon SMI