Following a defeat to Polish prospect Andrzej Fonfara on points in a 10 round contest, Jamaican Road Warrior Glencoffe Johnson has chosen to call time on his professional career at the age of 43.
Johnson's 70 fight professional career commenced back in 1993 at the age of 24 and saw him take on some of the best fighters at Light-Heavyweight and Super Middleweight over the last 15 years.
Johnson’s record stops at 51 wins (35 by knockout) 17 defeats with only 1 stoppage loss on the slate against fellow ageless 40 something Bernard Hopkins back in 1997 for the IBF Middleweight title.
"The Road Warrior" carved out a reputation as a fighter willing to take on all comers at either 12 stone or the classical 12 stone 7lbs divisions and faced off against opponents such as Antonio Tarver, splitting two points decisions with "The Magic Man", going 1-1-1 with Sheffield’s Clinton Woods here in the UK in a tight and often overlooked trilogy of fights.
Johnson lost two tight points decisions to current WBC Light-Heavyweight king Chad Dawson, but it was the dramatic ninth knockout of a prime Roy Jones Jnr back in 2004 when Jones was at his majestic pomp despite losing all his titles to Tarver in his previous bout that Johnson will be most remembered for.
In that contest, Johnson countered Jones’ superior athleticism and speed with accurate and effective counter punching to dominate the fight in eight rounds before scoring the ninth round knockout.
However, Johnson’s career has been littered with setbacks. In his most recent fights, there was an overwhelming one sided loss to Lucian Bute for the IBF Super-Middleweight title, a belt Johnson once challenged for unsuccessfully against Sven Ottke in Dusseldorf back in 1999.
Other losses include a thrilling points verdict to the big hitting American Light-Heavyweight Tavoris Cloud and a 10 rounds points loss to former WBO Light-Heavyweight champ Julio Cesar Gonzalez as well as an entertaining loss to Carl Froch in the Super Six Semi final.
Outside of the ring Johnson was known for being a terrific and accessible ambassador of the sport who chose not to engage in the trash talking that often occurs within the sport and has the blue collar work ethic that has made him a popular and respected figure within the fight game, earning him the moniker of Gentleman.
While Johnson's skills and the fitness remain, age is the one opponent that, no matter who you are, will always win.
Nevertheless, Johnson has delivered so many terrific memories, even if he has never been given the breaks that his efforts have so richly commanded, during his 19 year career that the question has to be asked: does Johnson deserve a place in Hall of Fame?
While he has not been a multiple weight world champion, nor made a long run of successful defences, it will be his blue collar throwback style of taking on all comers anywhere that made him such a popular and exciting fighter to watch.
Let us hope his post ring career delivers much prosperity and happiness.