Johnson Vows to KO Former Champ
Former champion Reggie Johnson battles former champion Glen Johnson in the “Fight Night for Climate Change” Pay-per-View extravaganza on November 17, from the Burton Coliseum in Lake Charles, Louisiana
Before you laugh off former middleweight and light heavyweight champion “Sweet” Reggie Johnson’s chances in his upcoming fight against Glen Johnson, you really need to speak to William Guthrie.
In 1998, Reggie Johnson had boxed less than a round in three years when he signed to face then-IBF Light Heavyweight Champion Guthrie, who was an undefeated knockout artist with growing reputation as one of boxing’s most powerful new champions.
Guthrie left on a stretcher. Johnson left with a new belt around his waist.
And when he battles former world champion and red-hot IBF #1-rated contender Glengoffe Johnson on November 17 at the Burton Coliseum in Lake Charles, Louisiana, Reggie (43-7-1, 25 KOs) says he’s going to do it again.
“I have never officially retired,” explains the 41-year-old Johnson, whose only ring appearance in the past five years was a ninth round knockout over respectable veteran Fred Moore last July. “I’m better physically and mentally than I was when I was 25. My sparring partners, doctors, and trainers will assure you of that. On November 17, I will be at my best. I’ve been in 21 title fights, so my experience will be the key to pulling off one the biggest upsets in the last decade.”
In his 23-year career, Johnson says he’s seen better versions of Glen Johnson and already knows how to handle him. “I see a lot of holes in Glen’s game; I was at his last two fights. When I turned pro in 1984, I was 17 years old and my first big job was sparring with (former feared middleweight contender) Wilford Scypion to get him ready for Frank Fletcher and Marvin Hagler. Wilford made you work every second of every round. I already know that my style beats his.”
With a wealth of experience that includes three successful title defenses at middleweight, two at light heavyweight, as well as a controversial defeat to a prime James Toney in 1991, Reggie Johnson says he has spent the last 5 years training the other parts of his life. “I’ve been working on being a better man of God, a better father, son, and friend, plus a better businessman outside the ring. I have also been doing a lot of community work with the kids in Houston.”
Reinvigorated and determined to climb back to the top of the light heavyweight division, Johnson claims a victory over Glen Johnson won’t be enough. “Glen is the toughest in the division, so I will be smart early and put rounds in the bank, but after the fifth or sixth round, I will do what Tarver, Jones, and a host of other fighters could not do and that is knock him out.”
On paper, Reggie Johnson would seem a heavy underdog going into his fight with Glen Johnson. But somewhere in Florida is an ex-champion who knows how dangerous “Sweet” Reggie is, no matter how long he’s been gone.
Coming from a long layoff with the odds stacked against him in a fight the whole world will be watching—Reggie Johnson isn’t fazed. He already knows the way home from there.
KO Corner News • Weight Classes • Light Heavyweight • Glen Johnson