What has been absent in Dawson's unbeaten career is the kind of hook that translates into star power, something to spice up his regular-guy persona and make the fans take special notice.
"Chad is definitely one of the three best fighters in the world, right up there with Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather," says Gary Shaw, Dawson's promoter.
"The difference is Chad hasn't gotten all the credit he deserves because he's basically a quiet family man."
Minus a flashy lifestyle, Dawson, 28, has used pure boxing skills to stay in the mix as a featured fighter. He'll be cast in the spotlight again Saturday, August 14 at the Bell Centre in Montreal when he faces WBC light heavyweight champion Jean Pascal of Laval, Canada (25-1, 16 KOs) on HBO's World Championship Boxing (10:30 PM ET/7:30 PM PT).
Known best for two victories each against former light heavyweight champions Antonio Tarver and Glen Johnson, Dawson will be trying to regain the belt he vacated in 2008 to fight Tarver the first time. He won the crown in February, 2007, getting up from a 10th-round knockdown to win a unanimous decision against Tomasz Adamek.
"I cannot wait until August 14," Dawson says. "Now it's time to reclaim my original crown and bring it home to the U.S."
Pascal, 27, is not an opponent to take lightly. The Haitian-born champion is noted for his power and has won all three of his fights since moving up from super middleweight in 2009. He won the crown with a unanimous decision against Adrian Diaconu, stopped Silvio Branco on a 10th-round TKO and decisioned Diaconu again in a rematch.