Top Rank Boxing on ESPN Preview: Jennings vs. Dimitrenko, Hart vs. Gavronski


By: William Holmes

On Saturday night at the Ocean Resort Casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey Top Rank Promotions will promote an eight fight boxing card to be televised on ESPN.

The main event and co-main event of the evening will likely have future title bout implications. Bryant Jennings will face Alexander Dimitrenko in a heavyweight showdown in the main event of the evening and Jesse Hart will face Mike Gavronski in the super middleweight division.

The undercard is packed with local prospects and rising contenders which will help bring in fans from nearby areas to Atlantic City. Shakur Stevenson from Trenton, New Jersey, Jason Sosa from Camden, New Jersey, Christian Carto from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and Thomas LaManna from Millville, New Jersey are all fighters with local ties that could be up for a title shot in the near future.

The following is a preview of the two main fights of the night.


Photo Credit: Top Rank Boxing Twitter Account

Jesse Hart (24-1) vs. Mike Gavronski (24-2-1); Super Middleweights

Jesse “Hard Work” Hart is the son of legendary Philadelphia Boxer Eugene “Cyclone” Hart and recently lost a close decision to current WBO Super Middleweight World Champion, Gilberto Ramirez.

Hart, to his credit, has remained active since that loss and is back to his winning ways. He fought twice in 2018, twice in 2017, and twice in 2016. Four of his past five wins have been by KO/TKO.

Gavronski is a good boxer with a decent record. However, he is three years older than Hart and will be giving up about three inches in height and six and a half inches in reach.

He also fought three times in 2017 and twice in 2016. Gavronski did not fight yet in 2018.

Jesse Hart also has an edge in power over Gavronski. He has twenty stoppage victories while Gavronski has fifteen. Hart has also never been stopped while Gavronski has been stopped once.

Hart also has the edge in amateur experience. He won the 2011 National Golden Gloves Championship and placed 2nd in the 2012 US Olympic Trials. Gavronski has no notable amateur accomplishments to speak of.

Hart has beaten the likes of Demond Nicholson, Thomas Awimbono, Alan Campa, Andrew Hernandez, and Aaron Pryor Jr. His lone loss was a close decision to Gilberto Ramirez.

Gavronski has beaten the likes of Andrew Hernandez, Thomas Awimbono, and Brian Vera. His losses were to Dashon Johnson and Tureano Johnson.

Dashon Johnson is a man that Hart beat in 2016.

Hart appears to have too much fire power for Gavronski to handle.


Photo Credit: Top Rank Boxing Twitter Account

Bryant Jennings (23-2) vs. Alexander Dimitrenko (41-3); Heavyweights

Bryant Jennings is a solid heavyweight boxer who previously fought for the title but came up short against Wladimir Klitschko.

He’s fought twice in 2018 and twice in 2017 and is looking for another title shot.

Jennings is facing a boxer that many consider to be past his prime in Alexander Dimitrenko.

Jennings, at the age of thirty three, is three years younger than Dimitrenko. He will also be giving up about four inches in height, but Jennings will have a one inch reach advantage. Both boxers aren’t necessarily known for their power. Dimitrenko has twenty six stoppage victories while Jennings has thirteen.

Both boxers have been stopped in their career. Dimitrenko has two stoppage losses while Jennings only has one.

Jennings had a brief amateur career but it was rather successful. He made it to the finals of the 2009 PAL Nationals and was a National Runner Up in the Golden Gloves National Championship. He also defeated former UFC Heavyweight Champion , Stipe Miocic, as an amateur. To this writer’s knowledge, Dimitrenko has no notable amateur accomplishments.

Jennings losses were to Wladimir Klitschko and Luis Ortiz. He has defeated the likes of Joey Dawejko, Akhror Muralimov, Don Haynesworth, Mike Perez, Artur Szpilka, Andrey Fedosov, Bowie Tupou, Steve Collins, Siarhei Liakhovich, and Maurice Byarm,

Dimitrenko fought three times in 2017 and twice in 2016 but has yet to fight in 2018. His losses were to Joseph Parker, Kubrat Pulev, and Eddie Chambers. He has defeated the likes of Derric Rossy, Albert Sosnowski, Adrian Granat, and Miljan Rovcanin.

His win over Miljan Rovcanin is contested by many though and that was his last bout. The bout was originally ruled a split draw, but Dimitrenko team protested the result. It was later ruled a win for Dimitrenko because Rovcanin had three points deducted and accordingly he should have been disqualified after the third point deduction.

Jennings experience in fighting a taller elite fighter like Klitschko might prove valuable in Saturday’s fight. Dimitrenko won his last bout, but didn’t look particularly good doing so. Jennings isn’t known for his power, but he should be able to box intelligently and win a decision.

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