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Chad Dawson Bio

Posted 12:00 AM | Feb 23, 2012

Chad Dawson
Weight Class: Light Heavyweight

31 Wins | 2 Losses | 17 KOs

Hometown: Hartsville, South Carolina
Birthdate: July 13, 1982
Height: 6'1"
Nickname: Bad

Chad "Bad" Dawson was born to Wanda and Rick Dawson in Hartsville, South Carolina in 1982.  He has four brothers and two sisters. His father was a boxer and the training in the northeast was believed to be much better than the south. When Chad was 7-years-old, his father moved the family to New Haven, Connecticut.

Chad and his brothers and sisters attended grammar school like most children, but in their free time, the boys went to the gym and trained with their dad. 

At 11-years-old, Chad was in the ring and training regularly at a small gym called Ring One Boxing. In addition to boxing, Chad worked on his other athletic skills. Chad was on the high school football team serving as both quarterback and wide receiver. He was also point guard on the varsity basketball team. Dawson continued to box and play basketball, excelling in both. 

In 1999, he reached a split in his athletic career and had to choose, giving up boxing to focus on basketball just before the 1998 Olympic trials. As with many athletes, Chad was challenged by outside distractions that made it difficult to maintain focus and keep his GPA at an acceptable level to continue with basketball. Eventually, he lost his spot on the basketball team.

Chad was then faced with two options: continue to attend what is called the University of Dixwell and head down the path of nowhere, or focus on what could become a life-changing career. Dixwell Avenue is an area where youth hang out, and it is called the University of Dixwell because the youth that choose to stay typically don't make much of their lives. It's a tough place to stay out of trouble. It's easy to get sucked in, but Chad rose above it and began to focus on boxing full-time. Chad held the Junior Middleweight title and he fought in Hungry at the nationals in 2000. In 2001, after finishing 58-13 as an amateur at the age of 19, Chad went pro.

Dawson, a southpaw, made his professional debut at middleweight, moving up to super middleweight where he earned victories over notable opponents such as Ian Gardner and Carl Daniels.

On June 2, 2006, in his bout with former title challenger and fellow southpaw Eric Harding (23-3-1), Dawson scored a unanimous decision victory, becoming the new NABF light heavyweight title holder. After suffering a flash knockdown in the opening seconds of the first round, Dawson dominated the fight and came away with judges' scores of 117-110, 116-111, and 117-110.

At age 24, Chad Dawson won the WBC light heavyweight title against undefeated Pole Tomasz Adamek on February 3, 2007. The judges gave Chad Dawson a unanimous decision victory, with scores of 116-110, 117-109, and 118-108.

In June 2007, Dawson defended the WBC belt for the first time, in a fight with Jesus Ruiz (19-5-0), winning by technical knockout in round six. The fight was broadcast on Showtime as part of a card that featured former light heavyweight champion Antonio Tarver.

On September 29, 2007, Dawson defeated Epifanio Mendoza by fourth round TKO in his second title defense.

In April 2008 as his third title defense, Dawson retained the belt by a controversial unanimous decision victory against challenger Glen Johnson. The three judges each had the fight scored 116-112 in favor of the champion Dawson. Again aired on Showtime, for Dawson the card marked the second occasion for which he and Tarver fought in separate bouts on the same card, with Tarver winning each featured bout.

Dawson, who is married to Crystal and has 3 sons (Prince-Chadwick, Sir-Chancellor and Royal-Champion), was formerly trained by Dan Birmingham, Floyd Mayweather Sr., and Eddie Mustafa Muhammad and is now employing the services of "Iceman" John Scully after geographical constraints forced Dawson to end his most recent partnership with Hall of Fame trainer Emanuel Steward.

On October 11, 2008, at the Palms Casino in Las Vegas, Dawson fought IBF and IBO Light Heavyweight Champion Antonio Tarver. Dawson, who controlled the pace and landed most of the significant punches for a majority of the fight, was more active in methodically wearing out his opponent. Tarver landed the occasional punch, but Dawson was in control for most of the fight. With 2:11 left in the final round, Dawson scored a knockdown against Tarver, the only knockdown in the fight. Dawson won the fight by unanimous decision with scores of 117-110 from two judges and 118-109 from the third judge. Dawson earned $800,000 for the fight and Tarver earned $1 million.

In May of 2009, at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Dawson successfully defended his IBF and IBO titles in a rematch against Tarver and scored another convincing unanimous decision. The scores were 117-111 (twice) and 116-112.

On November 7, 2009, at the XL Center in Hartford, Connecticut, Dawson fought a rematch with Glen Johnson and this time removed all doubt of his superiority with a well-deserved unanimous decision. The scores were 115-113 (twice) and 117-111. Dawson out-boxed Johnson and nullified his pressure with his outstanding athleticism.

On August 14, 2010, Dawson suffered the only loss of his professional career via eleventh-round technical decision to Canada's Jean Pascal in Montreal, Quebec. Dawson took too many rounds to figure out Pascal's awkward style and gave away many of the early rounds. However, just before an accidental cut to Pascal would end the encounter early and send it to the scorecards, Dawson appeared to be on his way to a stoppage victory. The scores were 106-103 (twice) and a questionable 108-101.

On May 21, 2011, Dawson returned to his winning ways by venturing back to Montreal to score a dominant unanimous decision over former champion Adrian Diaconu. Showing improvements from then-trainer Emanuel Steward, Dawson showed he was ready for another title shot by making fairly easy work of a fellow top-rated light heavyweight. The scores were 117-111, 118-110 and 116-112.

Last October 2011, Dawson probably fought one of the most controversial fights of his career when he faced Bernard "The Executioner" Hopkins at STAPLES Center in Los Angeles. In the second round, Hopkins went down on the mat after a heated exchange, where both fighters were in odd positions, "Bad" was declared light heavyweight winner by a TKO. Hopkins who injured his shoulder in the fall was sent to the California Hospital Medical Center in Los Angeles immediately after the fight. Dawson was crowned champion that day, but Hopkins appealed the decision and the California State Athletic Commission (CSAC) ruled the fight a no-decision on October 20, 2011, handing back the belt to Hopkins leaving Dawson empty handed.  

A couple of days later, Gary Shaw lobbied the WBC to order an immediate rematch and his request was granted.

Recent Fights:

- Prepare for the Andre Ward Era
This Time Around, Dawson Leaves No Room for Controversy