Category Archives: Joey DaWejko

Julian Williams KO over Matano caps off a spectacular Kings Promotions show at the Sands Casino

March 5, 2016  – Shout out to Marshall Kauffman and Kings Promotions who continue their run of producing very good boxing shows. On this particular evening, the Reading based outfit went live across the country on Showtime Boxing from the Sands Casino in Bethlehem, PA. The on TV fights produced fireworks and the off-TV battles were pretty damn good in their own right.

On a show that was in cahoots with GH3 Promotions and DiBella Entertainment, fight fans saw a young fighter springboard into title contention, a true Fight of the Year candidate and a couple of prospects get put to the test in tough bouts.

The near sell-out crowd was a lively mixture of people from different walks of life and the venue itself seems custom-built to accommodate a professional boxing show. An old-timer said to me “this is how all the fights used to be!”

In the main event – Philadelphia’s Julian Williams “did what he needed to do” and knocked out a tougher-than-advertised Marcello Matano of Italy in the 7th round of their 154 pound IBF title elimination bout.

Julian Williams vs Marcello Matano press credential

Continue reading Julian Williams KO over Matano caps off a spectacular Kings Promotions show at the Sands Casino

Mansour’s win over DaWejko inspires my best piece of written work…

 

I remember the moment ever so clear. On a random day about eight weeks ago, I was taking a lunch break downtown at Liberty Place. The plan was simple, hit Chic-fil-A, chill out for a bit then get back to business. As I was finishing off my waffle fries, I started mindless browsing through Facebook. Out of nowhere, I came across one of those rare posts that make a news feed glow.

The timeline was telling me that Russell Peltz and Brittany Rogers worked a little back room magic and struck a deal that called for local Heavyweights Amir Mansour and Joey DaWejko to fight each other. 10 rounds, ESPN2 fight with the Pennsylvania State Heavyweight title on the line. No financial terms were disclosed – but what else is new. Either way, WOW! Who would have thought – two Philly guys with good records agreeing to knock the other off in order to advance their career.

Two Philly guys fighting each other is a rare scenario in this day and age. Some love the idea, many others hate it. No one denies that they make for the best fights. That is the type of drama that piques my interest. This little piece of noon-time gold was one of the few occasions where I have been inspired to attend a local boxing show in the past five years.

Continue reading Mansour’s win over DaWejko inspires my best piece of written work…

The moment has arrived for Mansour vs. DaWejko – Send your prediction to enter the Sumo Steak “Dinner for Two” contest

Tonight, live on ESPN Friday Night Fights from the 2300 Arena in South Philadelphia, the long-awaited fight between Amir “Harcore” Mansour (21-1, 16 ko’s) or Joey “The Tank” DaWejko (14-3-2, 7 ko’s) finally happens. For eight weeks, the public has been fed an endless stream of hyperbole to build up this local showdown. Most are saying this is going to be a very good fight. I am saying that this needs be a very good fight! The 2300 Arena is nearly sold out and many around the world will tune in via ESPN. The eyes are watching and the people are talkin’. The time for chatter is over. It is put up or shut up in its highest form. We finally get to find out who is the better local fighter.

On paper this bout has the makings of a one of those all-Philly classic showdowns that are hard to come by in today’s local boxing landscape. It is the tale of two fallen prospects who brushed the dirt off their shoulder, got back in line and punched their way to the cusp of contender status. Around town both fighters are known name, but their long-term destinies are unclear. This fight will likely give a clue if either fighter is truly a “next-level” heavyweight. This one fight may not provide all of the answers but it will give some insight as both men will be faced with the type of skill sets they have yet to defeat as professionals.

This is easily the most anticipated local showdown since Derek “Pooh” Ennis narrowly edged “King” Gabriel Rosado in the same building five years ago. That particular bout turned out to be a 12 round Philly Junior Middleweight classic and run away local Fight of the Year winner. This one has the locals buzzing with predictions all across the board. Most think a knockout is in order. Some have already ordained it the 2015 Fight of the Year.

Continue reading The moment has arrived for Mansour vs. DaWejko – Send your prediction to enter the Sumo Steak “Dinner for Two” contest

4 big Philly fights on deck for April and May. Which will be the best?

This weekend kicks off a boxing run of epic proportions for Philadelphia based talent. Four high-stakes contests that can change the course of a career. Which fight are you looking forward to most?
Is it Danny Swift Garcia vs Lamont Peterson for the The Ring (magazine) 140 lb crown live on NBC on April 11?

Could it be Bryant By-By Jennings quest to become the World Heavyweight Champion on April 25 when he faces Wladimir Klitschko on HBO Boxing?

How about Jesse Hard Work Hart‘s major league spot when he takes on Chicago’s undefeated Mike Jimenez on the under card of Mayweather – Pacquiao PPV?

Last but not least, maybe it is Joey Dawejko vs. Amir Hard Core Mansour for the PA Heavyweight title in one of the final ESPN Friday Night Fights broadcasts. All have some serious buzz behind them. Which is the most significant?

 — with Wladimir KlitschkoAmir Hard Core MansourJesse Hard Work HartDanny Swift GarciaDanny ‘Swift’ GarciaLamont PetersonMike JimenezJoey Dawejko and Bryant By-By Jennings.

MANSOUR VS. DAWEJKO – Official for May 8, 2015 at the 2300 Arena

PELTZ BOXING PRESS RELEASE:

IT’S OFFICIAL:  MANSOUR VS. DAWEJKO

ON MAY 8 AT 2300 ARENA IN PHILLY;

ESPN2 WILL TELEVISE

Mansour vs DaWejko all set for May 8, 2015
Mansour vs DaWejko all set for May 8, 2015

Philadelphia, PAAmir “Hard Core” Mansour, of Wilmington, DE, and Joey “The Tank” Dawejko, of Philadelphia, will collide in the most anticipated local showdown in years when they battle over 10 rounds—or less—for the vacant Pennsylvania State Heavyweight Title on Friday evening, May 8, at the 2300 Arena.

The Mansour-Dawejko contest, which will be televised live by ESPN 2, tops a seven-bout card that begins at 7 p.m.  The ESPN 2-televised portion of the program begins at 9 p.m.

Mansour (above right), a powerful southpaw, is one of the most feared heavyweights in the world and constantly has been avoided by the big names in the division.  At 42, and with time running out, he makes his ESPN debut after piling up a record of 21-1, 16 K0s.

A former USBA heavyweight champion, Mansour lost that belt to Steve Cunningham, who survived a pair of fifth-round knockdowns last year to earn a 10-round decision in Philadelphia.

Because of his inability to get the big- name contenders to fight him, Mansour is rated no higher than No. 24 by the WBC, which most boxing fans consider an insult to Mansour’s record and to his ability.

In his last fight Nov. 8 at the Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem (PA), Mansour scored what Sports Illustrated claimed was the Knockout of the Year when he flattened Fred Kassi, of New Orleans, LA, with a single right hand in the seventh round of their scheduled 10-rounder.

Mansour believes a win over Dawejko will get him back into the world rankings

“I’m gonna smash this kid,” Mansour said.  “He doesn’t have the power or the skill level or the warrior’s mentality to go the full 10 rounds with me.  I’m not going to leave it in the hands of the judges; I’m going to leave it in the hands of the paramedics.”

Dawejko (above left), 24, comes into this fight riding a six-fight winning streak, including a stretch of four consecutive first-round knockouts.

A pro since 2009, Dawejko is 14-3-2, 7 K0s, but he survived the first four and one-half years of his career by managing and promoting himself, accepting fights on short notice when he was out of shape.

Now, under new management (Club 57), Dawejko is finally living up to the promise he showed as a world-class amateur.

He opened 2015 with an eight-round decision victory over fringe contender Derric Rossy, of Medford, NY, then followed by beating former amateur rival Mark Rideout, of Philadelphia.  His four first-round knockout victims may not have been world-beaters—David Williams, Philadelphia; Yohan Banks, Redwood City, CA; Rayford Johnson, Longview, TX; Enobong Umohette, Milwaukee, WI—but Dawejko needed less than six minutes combined to demolish all four of them.

“I can’t wait to step into the ring May 8 in my national TV debut,” Dawejko said.  “It’s going to be an explosive night.  I’m going to steamroll Mansour ‘cause I’m the tank.”

 

About May 8

The Mansour-Dawejko contest headlines a seven-bout card at the 2300 Arena in South Philadelphia. Doors open at 6 pm; first fight is 7pm.  The card will be televised live by ESPN 2 at 9 pm.  Tickets are $55 and $80 and can be purchased by calling Peltz Boxing (215-765-0922) and Wanamaker’s Tickets (215-568-2400).  Tickets also can be purchased online at www.peltzboxing.com and www.wanatix.com.  The May 8 card is promoted by Peltz Boxing, Joe Hand Promotions and BAM Boxing.

Dawejko dispatches Umohette in a mere :27 seconds. Now expected to face Mansour on ESPN in May

Well that was quick! Going into the fight no one was giving Nigeria’s Enobong Umohette a chance to beat Joey DaWeko in Joey’s backyard. The experts were correct, he didn’t last half a minute into the fight as a quick Dewejko left hook ended the bout :27 seconds after the opening bell sounded.

The victory marks “The Tank’s” 6th consecutive win and 4th consecutive 1st round knockout. The fight was held at thje 2300 Arena and promoted by Peltz Boxing, Joe Hand Promotions & BAM Boxing.

The end result sets up a local showdown between Joey D and Amir Mansour. I’m not sure why Enobong Umohette stood in between this fight in the first place – but now that is out of the way we can see an interesting bout between two fighters who feel that they belong in the next level. No more free rides – this one should be very competitive…. while it lasts!

This contest is expected to take place at the 2300 Arena in South Philly on May 8, 2015 live on ESPN Friday Night Fights.

Joey Dawejko takes on Enobong Umohette for a shot at Amir Mansour on ESPN

Tonight at the 2300 Arena, the table is all set for Tacony’s Joey DaWejko (13-3-2, 6 ko’s) to break into the next level of heavyweight competition. If the chatter is true, all that stands between him and an ESPN fight against the hard punching Amir Mansour is mystery man Enobong Umohette (9-2, 8 ko’s) of Nigeria. Hundreds of tickets have been sold throughout the Northeast and everyone is expecting DaWejko to come out victorious. The stakes are high and the time is now for Joey D to fulfill the promise that many saw in him six years ago, when he pinned the last loss on the resume of Bryant Jennings in a 2009 Philly amateur boxing classic.

Before the turn of the decade, Joey D was one of the worlds highest rated amateurs. He won many tournaments and traveled the country to compete with the best young fighters in the world. There are also many verified stories on how he beat legitimate pros up in sparring sessions.

But the one-time phenom’s success in the junior circuit did not immediately translate into success in the professional ranks. Issues with managers, promoters, dedication and surprise losses have gotten in the way of what was supposed to be a paved road to champion status. The low point came between the end of 2012 and the end of 2013 where he went 1-3-1 in a 5 fight stretch.

Now, rebranded as “The Tank”, DaWejko seems to have his management and promotional situation straightened out. He has rebounded to win his last 5 fights which include three consecutive 1st round KO’s. The current steak is to be commended, but the bottom line is that here we are six years into his pro career and still do not know for sure if Joey D is truly a “next-level” heavyweight. The scheduled bout against Enobong Umohette (9-2, 8 ko’s) probably won’t do much to tell fans how DaWejko stacks up against the divisions elite. A fight against Mansour absolutely will give us a measuring stick. That is the fight everyone around town wants to see.

As for Umohette, there is not much data available on the guy aside from building up a record in the mid-west. If he were a wrestler he would hail from “Parts Unknown”. There have been occasions throughout boxing history when an opponent like this has thrown a monkey wrench at those making future plans before the first fight concludes. I do not expect this to be one of those occasions.

DaWejko is young, he can fight and as some of the old boxing souls say “he has the complexion to make the connection” in this twisted business of professional boxing. Let’s see if he can finally get over the hump.

The pending assignment against Umohette  is an 8 round heavyweight battle which will serve as the evenings co-feature hosted by Peltz Boxing and BAM Boxing Promotions.  For those still battling the 8+ inches of snow we received yesterday, the fight is available online at gfl.tv for $14.99.

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Derek Ennis Highlights a Night of Knockouts at The Blue!

On February 5 2010 – The Philly fight faithful snubbed their nose at certified blizzard to witness a classic night at The Legendary Blue on Friday. In the main event Derek “Pooh” Ennis sharpened up to the tune of a 5th round TKO over game journeyman Edwin Vasquez. Pooh pounded his head to no avail, but once he began to hit the body, the rock crumbled as Vasquez took two knees at the end, knowing it would take a miracle from Jesus to get a W.

In other action, it took Joey DaWejko longer to put on his socks than it did to dispatch his opponent, scoring a KO :47 intp the 1st round of his homecoming fight.

Ronald Cruz made a big statement when he bombed out Martinus Clay midway through the 3rd round of their scheduled 6 rounder.

Eric “Outlaw” Hunter and Andres Gustafson both scored some nice early KO wins.

Jackie Davis again pumps out the fight of the night in a 4 round rumble that had the crowd on their feet throughout.

Clement Bethea and Henry Northam fought like they were competing for a spot in Maximus Roman empire.

 

Joey DaWejko and Brian McGinley interview

Tacony’s Joey DaWejko and trainer Brian McGinley speak on their future as Joey prepares to make his Philadelphia Debut (as a pro) at The Legendary Blue Horizon 2-5-10

If you have any questions, comments or suggestions you can email Philly Keith at keith@phillykeith.com

Go to www.phillykeith.com for up to the minute info on the Philly boxing scene

Derek Ennis is the USBA Champ! Victor Vasquez turns in his best performance yet

Before we talk about the local boxing happenings of today, October 16, 2009, take a walk with me I take a flash back to Philadelphia, circa 1999. It was a year of change for this great city with many tall tasks and lots of uncertainty ahead. One of the all time Philly greats, Ed Rendell, was stepping down from his big office at room 215 in City Hall wrapping up one of the most successful runs in the history of the country as mayor of a big city.

The people chose a 19 year veteran of City Council, John Street to lead the charge into the new millennium. The big building across from the street from the clothespin hasn’t been the same since. It was also a new day in Eagles country as 1999 marked the beginning of the Andy Reid- Donovan McNabb era whose goal was to give a fresh breath of life into a franchise that hit the bottom of the barrel. Say what you want about Big Red and his adopted son’s reign but five NFC Championship games later, the Birds as a well-respected and very lucrative franchise.

The Phillies were still light years away from becoming World F. Champions and Overbrook’s Will Smith was just putting down the mic to hit Hollywood for a career that saw him become one of the highest grossing actors of all-time.

Flying below the radar was Greg Robinson, a young ex-boxer with ambitions to stay in the game he loved. With family roots that ran deep into the heart of Philly boxing, he gave birth to his Power Productions promotional outfit in late 1999. In the one sport that is truly here today, gone tomorrow, Robinson has survived and even thrived in this landscape where only the strong, smart and crazy survive.

Ten years later, Power Productions has become a Philly boxing club show main stay, producing some of the best action fights this town has seen in the 21st century. For that I tip my cap to the man. Like Greg said at the press conference, there is a lot that goes on behind the scenes that make this a very tough business at times, but this is the sport we choose. For that we continue on doing what we love.

To celebrate 10 years behind the scenes, Robinson and Power Productions returned to the place where it all started – The Legendary Blue Horizon on North Broad Street with a seven fight card featuring some of the young and hungry fighters that help make this city the number one fight town on earth.

On top of the bill was a young Philly fighter currently taking the proper steps in a quest to become recognized as World F. Champion. One who has many tools but also few questions, which regularly lead to, heated discussions about if he can truly compete and succeed at the top-level of boxing.

The fighter is Derek “Pooh” Ennis, a 28-year-old Junior Middleweight from the Germantown section of Philly. Ennis, a six-year pro, also comes from a family with deep roots in the Philly boxing scene. Ennis father and trainer Bozy was competed as a pro during this city’s golden era of the 70’s. Derek’s brother Farah is an undefeated rising Super Middleweight who is worth keeping an eye on.

Ennis has been well-regarded for some time now but his career has been on the roller coaster at times. His skills and undeniable as he is one of the most well-rounded boxers living in this town. He has put on masterful performances against good competition but also has lost to opponents he should have easily handled.

He has missed out on opportunities due to freak occurrences such as opponents getting into car accidents before the fight and has also shot himself in the toe by not making weight for significant fights.

For a while, it seemed like he was getting by on talent alone without putting in the work of a true professional. But potential is an amazing thing and through out it all his management team of Moz Gonzalez, Eddie Woods and Mike Fingerman have stuck by his side, continuing to push for a break to come along.

Finally, after all the highs and lows, Ennis was to the opportunity of a lifetime on this card. In this evening’s main event, Pooh signed to fight a 12 round bout against two-time Olympian from Nigeria Eromosele Albert for the vacant USBA title. Though the USBA is not a world-recognized crown, but it will get your foot in the door as the title holder automatically receives a top 15 rating in the world and with a successful defense, become a mandatory challenger to the world champ.

Albert has faced world-class competition and has name value as he turned in many good performances on the ESPN Friday Night Fights Series over the past few years. In a nutshell, it was do or die for Pooh who has been itching for a chance to take on the big names and big money.

The co-feature also had significance, this time it was in true Power Productions fashion. This bout pitted the promoters nephew, Tyric “Too Sweet” Robinson against the boxing barber from North Philly Victor Vasquez for a scheduled 8 rounder. Robinson at one time ranked as high as number five on my Philly local top 10 pound for pound fighter list but since then has lost two in a row and was searching to get back the glory of when he was turning in fight of the year candidates.

Vasquez is the Arturo Gatti of our local scene. Win or lose, he is always in the fight of the night. Caution goes to the wind and defense goes out the window leading to two-way action brawls.

Robinson was the natural Junior Welterweight but Vasquez brings the heat, it was the fight that could possibly steal the show. These two matches plus the return of Tommie “Big Poppa” Speller and more. Scroll down to see how it all went down at The Blue on Greg Robinson’s 10th anniversary card!

Overall the show was a winner as the main event turned out to be one of the years most competitive two-way fights. Derek “Pooh” Ennis boxed and countered the extremely aggressive Eromosele Albert over 12 rounds to win a close but clear unanimous decision to become the 154 lb USBA champion.

It was a see-saw battle that had a lot of tight rounds with Albert winning most of the rounds early with his pressure and brute strength but Ennis was able to turn the tide mid way through as he consistently fought his way out of trouble with multiple flurries in the middle of the ring and swift movement when pressed into a corner.

Take nothing away from Albert, he was in Ennis face all night and fought desperately to win, he just didn’t have enough down the stretch as Ennis came in tip-top shape (151.5 lbs) and had plenty of gas left in the championship rounds. It went to the scorecards which read 116 – 112 & 115 – 113 x 2 for Ennis who stamps his ticket into the top 15 of the IBF ratings. I also had it scored 115 – 113 for Ennis

In the co-feature “The Boxing Barber” Victor Vasquez put together the most complete performance of his young career scoring two hard knockdowns en route to a unanimous decision win over Tyric “Too Sweet” Robinson in their 6 round Jr. Welterweight bout. As always the case with Vasquez, it was high intensity from the start, but this time it wasn’t balls to the wall.

He showed patience, poise and actually slipped a few punches! Robinson, to his credit got off the floor and continued to fight hard after going down early in the 2nd and late in the 6th from big right hands. Very good fight as is usually the case when two Philly guys meet in the ring.

Super Middleweights Mario Mina and Tommie “Big Poppa” Speller were put together in an impromptu matchup after both had opponents fall out at the last second. Poppa vowed “to send his ass back to Ecuador” at the weigh in. Mina fought like it was personal in the 1st, hammering Poppa early who was more than willing to stand and trade.

The 2nd round was close then out of nowhere Speller almost delivered on his pre-fight promise early in the 3rd round after a good body took all of the steam out of Mina. Speller followed up with a hard right that jellied Mina’s legs. If Speller had more gas it might have been curtains. But this was not the case and Mina was able to survive the round.

The fight slowed a bit in the final round as both seemed to tire in their first fight in over a year. It went to the card which somehow read 40 – 36 for Mina. Maybe I need new contacts, but I saw it a draw.

South Philly Heavyweight John Mercurio did it Passyunk Ave. style as he mauled, tossed and battered James North for a little over :90 seconds before finishing the job with a huge right that flattened his out gunned opponent.

Nice turn out in the crowd for the big heavyweight as there were a good number of black Team Mercurio T-Shirts scattered across the arena. Expect to see him again soon.

Super Middleweight Derek Webster wasted little time dispatching a severely overmatched guy from West Virigina. At 6’4″, Webster could become a problem for fighters at this weight.

Super Featherweight Coy Evans turned in a very solid 4 round performance winning a unanimous decision over grizzled veteran Carlos Diaz. Evans showed good speed and surprising ring generalship against a 31 fight vet.

He doesn’t knock down walls but his pop is not to be under estimated either. Good, fan friendly fight as both were willing to sit in the pocket and exchange shots at time. In other spots Evans would box and create openings on his slower foe.

In woman’s action Rachel Clark was clearly the better fighter in her 4 rounder. Out of her southpaw stance, she landed a lot of straight lefts upstairs. After 2 rounds, her opponent made the right choice not to answer the bell.

www.phillykeith.com for the latest on the Philly Boxing Scene.  Email me keith@phillykeith.com