August 3rd, 2007 (Doraville, GA) – Undefeated Heavyweight Contender Kevin “The Great American Hope” Johnson (15-0-1, 6KO’s) arrived in Doraville, GA yesterday in his usual peak condition, ready to put on the performance of his career against the hard hitting Damian “Bolo” Wills (22-1-1, 16KO’s) this Friday at the Far West Rodeo. Johnson’s registered his best weight ever at 229lbs. Wills dropped 5lbs since March officially weighing 259lbs.
This fight will be televised on the renowned SHOWTIME series – ShoBox: The New Generation (11 p.m. ET/PT, delayed on the west coast).
In recent years, the media has been critical of the heavyweight division, as its been devoid of a legitimate American threat and littered with has-beens, and never wills. The division’s elite has consisted of names that nobody can even pronounce. However, in just a few short years, Johnson, who now fights out of Douglasville, GA, with his pure boxing skills and undeniable charisma has given a dying division a shot of adrenaline. As quick with words as he is with punches, Johnson made it clear that the gist of his laundry list is to clean house.
“I am like a Hoover vacuum cleaner,” John said, “and I’m going to clean out the division of all these ex-cons, ex-football players, tough man contest winners—anybody who think they can come into our industry and become boxers” said Johnson.
So far, Johnson has been getting the job done with a speedy educated jab that recalls Larry Holmes’. But Damian Wills, a 6’4” 260lbs behemoth, will challenge Johnson’s jab and speed with his raw power and pressure. So how will he deal with Wills’ style? Johnson recalls the advice of the “Easton Assassin” Larry Holmes.
“Holmes always told me, you do what works until it don’t work no more” says Johnson. “I have so much more to show. My combinations are so fast, and I have more of a right hand than people believe. But why show it when I’ve beat everyone so far with just my jab? My trainers, Charles Young, and Mark Murdock drill me and have developed the jab you see. I also have the legs to go 10-12 rounds. Hell, if I fought Sam Peter tonight he wouldn’t even touch me.”
Despite Johnson’s impressive resume, with his inevitable invasion of the division’s finest, should America rest their hopes on the young Johnson against Europe’s finest?
“Nobody knows this, but for the past 2.5 years I’ve been sparring with Nikolai Valuev,” said Johnson. Sparring with Valuev is a handful. Who do you know that sparred with a guy 7’, 350 plus pounds? And sparring with Povetkin is fun for me.”
“I’m a pure boxer. A lot of these guys don’t know the boxing game,” he continued. “It’s only strength and press for these guys. You can’t teach natural ability. You can teach someone how to throw a jab, but to be artistic with it. To throw a jab seven different ways, a lot of it is instinctive. That’s why these guys like me training with them; they try and learn the tricks of the trade. For me, fighting these guys is no problem.”
Come watch Johnson vs. Wills this Friday at the Far West Rodeo. Tickets can be purchased at: http://www.ticketalternative.com or by calling 1-877-725-8849. Tickets are priced at $35, $50, $100 and $125 for Ringside w/ table seating. A table of 8 is $1000.
The “ShoBox” telecast will air live at 11 p.m. ET/PT (delayed on the west coast).
The Far West Rodeo is located at 6616 New Peachtree Road – Doraville, Georgia. Doors open at 6:45 pm and the first fight starts at 7:15 pm.
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