Chad Dawson on Working With Steward To Beat Hopkins

By Keith Idec
Now that the press tour for his Oct. 15 fight against Bernard Hopkins has ended, Chad Dawson is eager to begin his second training camp with Emanuel Steward.

Dawson hired Steward as his trainer in December, but they’ve only worked together for one fight, not nearly enough time to determine how wise it was to replace Eddie Mustafa Muhammad with Steward.

“The adjustment is coming along, but it takes time,” Dawson said. “I’ve only been with him for four, five months. Everything is going great right now. I’m happy, he’s happy. In this fight we’re looking to take it to another level.”

Dawson wasn’t a visibly different fighter in his first bout with Steward in his corner, but Dawson (30-1, 17 KOs, 1 NC) and his handlers contend that had more to do with Dawson’s opponent, Adrian Diaconu (27-3, 15 KOs), than the Dawson-Steward partnership. Dawson won their 10-round round bout pretty easily May 21 in Montreal, but the typically passive southpaw wasn’t much more aggressive than usual while scoring a unanimous decision victory over Diaconu (118-110, 117-111, 116-112).

“That last fight had nothing to do with Emanuel Steward and Dawson,” said Gary Shaw, Dawson’s promoter. “He was fighting a fighter who was only trying to survive, not trying to win.”

Perhaps, but the 29-year-old Dawson knows he can’t approach the biggest fight of his career the way he handled Diaconu. Hopkins (52-5-2, 32 KOs, 1 NC) is 17 years older than Dawson, but the legend from Philadelphia still will be the most crafty, physical fighter Dawson has encountered in his 10-year pro career.

“He’s a jab freak,” Dawson said of Steward. “He wants the knockout, but at the same time he wants you to look good doing it. He likes boxer-punchers. That’s what we’re trying to turn me into. He wants me to be more aggressive. I know I have to be aggressive in this fight. That’s something that I have to do. I will do anything I have to do to win this fight.”

Even though they didn’t draw rave reviews in their first fight together, Dawson, of New Haven, Conn., is confident Steward is the right trainer to help him fully realize his potential. He’s just trying to remain patient as the process unfolds.

“You don’t just change overnight,” Dawson said. “It takes time. I think Emanuel Steward knows and I know it takes time. I think that now we’re coming together great. We talk on the phone all the time. I know what he wants and he knows what I expect. I think we make a great combination.”

Keith Idec covers boxing for The Record and Herald News, of Woodland Park, NJ., and

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by judge_jab on 08-12-2011

It won't be a problem because Steward WON'T be training Chad Dawson. Not really anyway. :boxing:

Comment by ShoulderRoll on 08-11-2011

I agree that Dawson has never looked as good as he did under Floyd Mayweather Sr. If Emmanuel Steward tries to turn him into another Klitscho-style robot I don't think it's going to work out too well.

Comment by adp023 on 08-11-2011

[QUOTE=jtiger777;10974605]his comments were not bad man why cant a brotha love his people? [/QUOTE] I'm not even a McNabb fan, but B-Hop has been making racial comments about McNabb consistently for YEARS! Only recently, it became national news. On a…

Comment by Boxingwizard on 08-11-2011

[QUOTE=Brother Jay;10973551]I've said it before and I'll say it again: No fighter aside from taller than average HWs will enjoy long term success under the tutelage of Emanuel Steward. Dawson is setting himself up for a loss messing with Manny.…

Comment by jtiger777 on 08-11-2011

[quote=adp023;10973258]dawson is a better athlete than jermain taylor was when he beat hopkins twice. Combine that with a chad being a southpaw, emmanuel steward as trainer and bernard being 46, dawson has to be the overwhelming favorite. I used to…

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