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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