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WBO Title Fight and Dawejko vs Jennings Biggest Philly Event in Years


By: Ken Hissner

Top Rank and Peltz Boxing Promotions on Saturday April 28th are bringing big time boxing back to Philly at the Liacouras Center (Temple U) in Philadelphia that the area hasn’t seen in years. Brad Goodman and J Russell Peltz doing the matchmaking.

Top Rank is responsible for bringing in a rare world title fight with WBO World Super Bantamweight Champion southpaw Jesse Magdaleno, 25-0 (18), of Las Vegas, NV, making his second title defense against interim champion and mandatory Isaac ‘Brave-Son’ Dogboe, 18-0 (12), of Accra, Ghana, over 12 rounds. This event will be on USA ESPN (at 4pm) but there is nothing like being there when it comes to the sport of boxing.


Photo Credit: Mikey Williams/Top Rank

“I’m going to put on a spectacular show. I’m mentally ready. I’m physically ready. Being here with (trainer) Manny Robles keeps me ready. The sparring has been great, but I get impatient sometimes and I just want to get in the ring for real. I have to stay calm and wait until the fight comes,” said Magdaleno. His trainer Manny Robles added “Dogboe is a real tough opponent. Jessie definitely has to be ready for this fight, and it should be a fan-friendly fight”.

At the Kings & Queens Liberian Cuisine in Upper Darby, PA, a African American restaurant Wednesday night J Russell Peltz and “Raging Babe” Michelle Rosado hosted Dogboe and his family (father-trainer Paul) and friends including his manager Mike Altamuia, from Australia. “I won 3 National titles and was in the 2012 Olympics. Every fight is based on intelligence. It isn’t if I’m going to knock out Magdaleno, but when I knock him out,” said Dodboe.

This card is “loaded” with talent and the Philadelphia fans are obviously looking forward to the Joey “The Tank” Dawejko, 19-4-4 (11), and Bryant “By-By” Jennings, 22-2 (13), PA State Heavyweight Title fight. It will be the “rematch” from when Dawejko defeated Jennings in the amateurs.

“This is the biggest fight of my career and I want to prove to the world I am a legitimate contender and I’m ready to go. I had a great camp in California with trainer Shadeed Suluke (trained James Toney among many),” said Dawejko.

His manager of almost 4 years Mark Cipparone who by the way is a perfect fit for Dawejko and serves as a good example what a manager should do for his fighter had this to say “I just think Joey has made the maturity and has given everything to his conditioning”. It’s been said Dawejko has the best left hook since “Smokin” Joe Frazier in Philly and for those who feel he should be a cruiserweight he has fought at heavyweight in the amateurs and professional ranks and has nothing to prove to anyone.

Jennings in 2014 put the first loss in back to back fights to Artur Szpilka, 16-0, and Mike Perez, 20-0-1. This earned him a world title fight with Wladimir Klitschko, 63-3, in 2015 where he lost a 12 round decision. In his next fight he faced at the time possibly the most feared fighter in the division in losing to Cuban Louis Ortiz some 8 months later. He was inactive in 2016 and returned in 2017 posting a pair of stoppages and one in February of 2018. This fight is “personal!”

Also, on the undercard is No. 1 ranked WBO Super Middleweight Jesse “Hollywood” Hart, 23-1 (19), fighting for the vacant NABF title against Demond “D’Bestatit” Nicholson, 18-2-1 (17), of Laurel, MD, in a 10 round bout. It will be Hart’s second bout since losing a decision to WBO Champion Gilberto “Zurdo” Ramirez last September.

Very popular Philly bantamweight Christian Carton, 14-0 (11), will be taking on Edwin “Puto” Rodriguez, 9-4 (5), of Puerto Rico in an 8. 2016 Olympian Shakur Stevenson, 5-0 (2), of Newark, NJ, takes on Roxberg Patrick Riley, 12-0 (6), of Dallas, TX, in an 8 round featherweight match.

A pair of top prospects in Allentown’s Super Featherweight Joseph Adorno, 6-0 (6), will be in a 6 while Philly’s welterweight Marcel Rivers, 4-0 (3), will be in a 4. Brazil’s 2016 Olympic Gold Medalist Super Featherweight Robson Conceicao, 6-0 (4), will be in an 8 as will Super Lightweight Kent Cruz, 14-0 (9), of St. Louis, MO.

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Joey “The Tank” Dawejko & Christian Carto Win in Philly


By: Ken Hissner

At a sold out (in 3 days) SugarHouse Casino in Philadelphia Friday night Hard Hitting Promotions with Manny Rivera and Will Ruiz (matchmaker) put on as good a show as I have seen in Philly in many a year featuring Philly heavyweight Joey “the Tank” Dawejko, in the main event with some of the best talent in Philly in years on the undercard of an event full of excitement by the promotion and great matchmaking.

Heavyweight Joey “The Tank” Dawejko, 19-4 (11), of Philly, used a knockdown to defeat Kelvin Nunez, 15-1 (14), of Carolina, PR, for the vacant WBC FECARBOX Title, over 8 hard fought rounds.
In the first round Dawejko is throwing every punch including jabs with bad intentions keeping Nunez on the defense.

A counter right from Dawejko off a Nunez miss rocked the latter. It was all Dawejko in this round. In the second round both fighters were exchanging with Nunez becoming more active but not enough to win the round. In the third round Dawejko landed a solid right uppercut to the chin of Nunez. Dawejko landed the better of the punches in a round of action.

In the fourth round the bout became very tactful on the part of both fighters.
Nunez finally seemed to get an edge in this round. In the fifth round Nunez came out firing until Dawejko landed a right hand to slow him down. Nunez turned southpaw and back to orthodox. It was a very close action round on the part of both fighters. In the sixth round Nunez was going to the body while Dawejko was countering with left hooks to the head. In the seventh round Nunez turned to the referee Shawn Clark complaining of who knows what and he got hit with a left hook from Dawejko that almost drove him through the ropes. In this writers opinion it was the difference in the end.

Dawejko had a big round landing some eight solid punches to the head of Nunez just prior to the bell. In the eighth and final round Nunez fought back possibly figuring he needed a knockout to win as he kept coming to Dawejko with too little too late. “I hurt my back in the first round,” said Dawejko. Nunez kept leaning on him doubling him over throughout the contest. Referee Clark warned him several times.

Judge John Poturaj had it 77-74 as did Dave Braswell while judge Frescia had it 76-75 while this writer had it 77-74.
Unbeaten Philly bantamweight Christian Carto, 13-0 (11), of South Philly, won a lopsided spirited decision over Luis Fernando Saavedra, 7-4 (3), of San Luis Potosi, MEX, over 8 rounds.

In the first round of feeling each other out Saavedra landed the first punch a straight left to the chin of Carto. Carto stalked Savvedra falling short with most jabs as Saavedra had his hands held high.

Saavedra switched back to orthodox from southpaw. Carto opened up with a flurry of punches just prior to the bell to the head of Saavedra. In the second round a solid left hook from Carto to the chin dropped Saavedra for an eight count from referee Eric Dali before getting up.

In the third round Carto landed a 3-punch combination to the head of Saavedra. Saavedra keeps switching from southpaw to orthodox. Carto went to the body of Saavedra who is countering sparingly.

Carto does better when Saavedra is orthodox. At the bell both fighters were throwing leather. In the fourth round Carto stalked and outworked Saavedra hurting him with follow-up right hands off of his jab.

In the fifth round Carto opened the round with a lead right to the chin of Saavedra now fighting southpaw. Carto was now on the move countering Saavedra well with combinations to the head. In the sixth round Carto landed a flurry of punches that had the crowd responding. Saavedra was stalking but walking into punches from Carto. It was Carto outworking Saavedra though the latter was coming forward.

In the seventh round Carto landed a hard right and left to the head of Saavedra who was up against the ropes. At the bell it was Carto landing punches with Saavedra doing more feinting than punching. In the eighth and final round it was all Carto with Saavedra more interested it seemed in going the distance than winning the fight.

Judge had it 80-71 as did this writer.

The Referee was Eric Dali.

Lightweight 18 year-old prospect Branden “The Gift” Pizarro, 8-1 (4), of Philly, was upset in a close decision by Christian Rivera, 7-0 (5), of Bayamon, PR, over 6 rounds of action.

In the first round Pizarro was the aggressor. Pizarro opened the round with a right and left to the head of Rivera. Pizarro drove Rivera into the ropes with a flurry of punches. A hard left hook landed by Pizarro rocked Rivera on the chin. A 3-punch combination from Pizarro to the head of Rivera got his attention.
Rivera’s face was red from the punches he received. In the second round Rivera landed a combination that was countered by a flurry of punches from Pizarro. A left to the chin from Rivera dropped Pizarro who seemed more embarrassed than hurt. Rivera tried to follow-up but was countered by Pizarro. Pizarro ended the round with a lead right to the chin of Rivera.

In the third round Pizarro hurt Rivera to the head with a right hand driving him into a neutral corner. Another right from Pizarro drove Rivera across the ring.

Pizarro had Rivera hurt in the corner but was countered by a left that momentarily dropped him to a knee. He was up as referee Clark counted and went after Rivera when the round ended. In the fourth round Pizarro was on the offense as Rivera countered with chopping left hands. Pizarro landed a pair of rights to the chin of Rivera that kept him on the move. Rivera landed a solid combination to the head of Pizarro getting his attention. It was a close round but Pizarro rebounded nice.

In the fifth round a lead left from Pizarro on the chin got Rivera’s attention. Rivera’s face is well marked while Pizarro’s is unmarked. Pizarro was once again on the attack while Rivera countered with less offense. In the sixth and final round Rivera opened up with a solid lead left to the chin of Pizarro.

Pizarro rocked Rivera with a left hook to the head. Pizarro knocked out the mouthpiece of Rivera causing referee Clark to halt the action. Pizarro was on the attack when this happened. It was one great fight full of action.

Judge John Portaju had it 58-54, Dave Braswell 58-55 and Adam Frescia 57-56 while this writer had it 56-56 with 4 rounds to Pizarro and 2 the knockdown rounds to Rivera.

Salvation Of Sorrows Inc. a non-profit organization at intermission with Abby (President) and Chris Anderson giving gifts to three youngsters including free training at the Hard Hitting Gym.

Celebrity boxers and trainers being introduced were Ray “Tito” Serrano, “Hammerin” Hank Lundy, former WBA champion Jason “El Canito” Sosa and title challenger on December 9th the American Idol Tevin “Successful” Farmer along with trainers Raul “Chino” Rivas and Rashiem Jefferson. Also in attendance was Philadelphia Eagle Malcolm Jenkins.

Lightweight Liberian “Tsuanami” Sammy Teah, 12-1-1 (5), of Philly, defeated “Mr. Marvelous” Maynard Allison, 9-3 (6), from NC, now living in Philly, in a spirited six rounds.

In the first round Teah was the aggressor using a good jab. The first punch landed by Allison a right to the head of Teah was countered by a right by Teah that had Allison holding on. Both landed right hands to the chin at the same time with Allison getting the worst of it. A left hook from Teah to the chin hurt Allison as the bell sounded. In the second round Teah lines up Allison with jabs to the mid-section with right hands following.

The fighters got into a heated exchange of punches with Teah getting the better of it. Teah landed a double right to the head while Allison came back with a right rocking Teah. Teah came back driving Allison into a neutral corner and on his bike.
In the third round controls with his jab keeping Allison at bay. Allison landed a good right uppercut to chin of Teah. The round ended with a Allison right to the chin of Teah. In the fourth round both fighters landed left hooks to the chin at the same time. Teah continued to stalk Allison when another exchange from both fighters had the sold out crowd yelling. The last two rounds were close but Teah seemed to pull them out.

In the fifth round Teah landed half a dozen punches hurting Allison who pushed Teah back against the ropes only to have Teah rock him with several uppercuts and a chopping right hand hurting Allison. It turned into a war. The fighters ended up slugging it out in the corner of Allison. In the sixth and final round there was a clash of heads making referee Dali halt the action. Allison pushed Teah to the canvas receiving a warning from referee Dali. Teah chased Allison around the ring trying for the knockout. Allison was warned for the second time for pushing off. Teach landed a good combination to the head of a retreating Allison as the fight drew to a close. The fans showed their appreciation.

All three Judge’s Vargas, Freisca and Braswell had it 60-54 as did this writer.
Heavyweight from Philly Darmani “Rock Solid” Rock, 10-0 (6), made his hometown debut a successful one stopping Carlos Cotto, 8-2 (5), of Carolina, PR, at 2:59 of the first round.

In the first round Rock used a good jab. Cotto missed with a right uppercut and Rock countered with a hard right to the head rocking Cotto. Rock landed a good combination to the head of Cotto making him blink with both eyes showing redness.

Rock missed with a right and countered with a left to the side of Cotto’s head dropping him to a knee. He struggled to get up at nine but was in no condition to continue as referee Shawn Clark wisely waved it off. The ring physician examined Cotto who was holding his right ear from the left hook that dropped him. “I saw he was scared so I went in for the finish,” said Rock.

In the opening bout Lightweight southpaw Jeremy Cuevas, 6-0 (5), of Philly, halted Jose Miguel “The Hammer” Castro, 5-10 (3), of Carolina, PR, at 2:05 of the fifth in a scheduled six round bout.

In the first round southpaw Cuevas used a good jab countering Castro. Cuevas hammered Cuevas into the ropes with half a dozen punches before Castro spun off the ropes. Referee Dali warned Castro to watch using his head which has reddened the nose of Cuevas. In the second round Cuevas landed a lead straight left to the head of Castro. Cuevas followed up with a right uppercut and left to the head. Both fighters exchanged punched to the head at once. In the middle of the ring Cuevas landed half a dozen unanswered punches.

Just prior to the bell Castro landed a right to the head of Cuevas who jumped all over him landing over half a dozen punches before the bell sounded.

In the third round Cuevas landed half a dozen unanswered punches in the middle of the ring. Castro continues to be the aggressor but has been on the defense when Cuevas opens up. Both fighters have red abrasions on their faces. In the fourth round both fighters get into an exchange of punches. Castro landed a hard right to the head of Cuevas bringing noise from the crowd. Castro turned away and Cuevas went after him rocking him with a pair of left hands to the head. A lead left from Cuevas to the chin of Castro rocked him at the bell.

In the fifth round Cuevas drove Castro into the ropes with a vicious variety of punches having him out on his feet when the corner of Castro threw the towel in causing referee Dali to wave it off.

“My corner said I was breaking him down by going to the body and I could see he was starting to cover up so as I was pounding on him the referee called it off,” said Cuevas.

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Joey “The Tank” Dawejko Returns to Philly with KO Win Friday


By: Ken Hissner

Hard Hitting Promotions (Will Ruiz and Manny Rivera) returned to the SugarHouse Casino before a packed house in Philadelphia Friday. This young promotional group has brought back life to a once great city with top notch young talent and crowd pleasers.

In the main event heavyweight Joey “The Tank” Dawejko, 18-4-4 (11), of Philly, stopped Demitrius Banks, 9-2 (4), of Detroit, MI, at 1:42 in the third round of a scheduled 8.

In the first round Dawejko stalked Banks out working and out smarting him. In the second round a hard right from Dawejko dropped Banks. Shortly afterwards a series of punches dropped Banks a second time. In the third round Dawejko with the crowd yelling “Joey, Joey” was all over Banks who all but collapsed from the fury Dawejko put on him before “The Tank’s” fans before referee Shawn Clark rescued Banks from any further punishment.

Welterweight Ray “Tito” Serrano, 23-4 (10), of Philly, came off the canvas to defeat Zack Ramsey, 8-2 (4), of Springfield, MASS, now out of Newark, NJ, over six rounds.

In the first round it was all Serrano digging in with left uppercuts to the body until the final seconds of the round when Ramsey countered with a right to the chin and Serrano went down. In the second round Serrano came out with a vicious body attack keeping Ramsey on the ropes for the most part of the round. In the third round Ramsey kept his arms to his side for the most part being outworked by Serrano. In the fourth round the action slowed to a crawl.

In the fifth round Ramsey stayed on the ropes for the most part while Serrano did his best trying to pinpoint a knockout punch. Halfway through the round with the crowd yelling “Tito, Tito” Serrano hurt Ramsey with a right to the chin. In the sixth round Serrano was warned for landing a low blow by referee Bashir. It was just prior to the bell Ramsey almost knocked Serrano down as the bell sounded. This fight was changed to a six from an eight.

Scores were 57-56 twice and 59-55 while this writer had it 58-56.

Both Dawejko and Serrano are under the management of Rocco Collision’s Mark Cipparone.

Super lightweight 17 year-old Devin “The Dream” Haney, 17-0 (11), of Las Vegas, NV, defeated late sub Enrique Tinoco, 16-5-3 (12), of MEX, over 8 rounds. Bashir was the referee.

In the first round Haney used his reach advantage he keeping Tinoco at bay throughout the round. In the second round Tinoco made more of a fight of it switching back and forth from southpaw to orthodox. Haney who turned pro at 15 in Mexico fights with his mouth open. In the third round it was Tinoco forcing the action fighting Haney to a stand still. In the fourth round it started out all Haney before Tinoco reversed course and pushed Haney back to the ropes.

In the fifth round late sub Tinoco continued to hold his own and in the sixth Tinoco had his moments forcing the action as Haney was moving backwards countering. Haney started showboating landing a windmill uppercut to the chin of Tinoco. In the seventh round it was Haney holding on when a right hand from Tinoco caught him on the chin. Tinoco came coming forward while Haney countered well. In the eighth and final round Haney came rushing out but Tinoco was waiting for him. Haney at the midway point of the round was landing good chopping right’s to the head of Tinoco. Near the end of the round Haney started showboating again. Tinoco did well making a fight of it. Haney did not win the Philly crowd over in this one.

Judges scores were 80-71 and 80-72 twice. This writer had it 78-74.

In the co-feature super lightweight sensation 17 year-old Branden Pizarro, 8-0 (4), of Philly, stopped Tyrone Luckey, 8-8-3 (6), of Neptune, NJ, at 0:24 of the fourth round.

In the first round it was all Pizarro who at 17 is already a fan favorite. In the second round Luckey was on the offense until tangled with Pizarro who got tired of referee Ron Bashir breaking the fighters and landed a low punch getting Luckey off of him. Pizarro went right after Luckey with an assortment of punches without return. In the third round a lead right from Pizarro to the chin rocked Luckey. A follow-up right to the chin from Pizarro dropped Luckey. He beat the count of referee Bashir just prior to the end of the round.

In the fourth round a left hook from Pizarro drove Luckey into the ropes which would have been ruled a knockdown but referee Bashir waved the fight off.

In the fight of the night light heavyweight David Murray, 7-1-1 (6), of Philly, came off the canvas in a real slugfest to stop Attila Koros, 14-12-1 (10), of Salgotarjan, HUN, at 1:53 of the fifth of a scheduled six.

In the first round Murray was having his way when a counter right from Koros right on the chin dropped Murray. Up at referee Clarks 8 count Murray did well to get through the round. In the second round both were throwing bombs when a straight right from Koros dropped Murray who managed to get through the round. In the third round Koros went right after Murray but lost his mouthpiece three times in the round.

In the fourth round it turned into a wild slugfest. Just when it looked like Koros may have punched himself out he landed a powerful right to the chin of Murray. The fans loved the action in this round. In the fifth round Murray punched out the mouthpiece of Koros. Murray was out punching Koros but it seemed to have little effect on Koros who kept coming forward until he lost his mouthpiece causing referee Clark to finally take a point away. Koros went right after Murray until he got caught with a wicked right to the mid-section and dropped for the count of referee Clark while on his knees. It looked like a “Rocky” episode. This one started like a war and ended the same way!

Lightweight Sam Teah, 11-1-1 (5), of Philly, was a late scratch as his opponent Istvan Dernanecz, 10-6 (7), of Nagykonizsa, HUN, didn’t pass his medicals in time.

Super lightweight southpaw prospect Jeremy Cuevas, 5-0 (4), of Philly, easily stopped Justin Savi, 31-14-2 (21), of Cotonou, Benin, now out of Silver Spring, MD, at 1:25 of the third round.

In the first round it was all Cuevas who swarmed all over Savi from bell to bell. Savi covered up and occasionally threw a wild right that never landed. Cuevas used a good body and head assortment. In the second round Cuevas swarmed all over Savi causing referee Clark to administer an 8-count. Savi did all he could to survive the round. In the third round Cuevas continued the onslaught until referee Clark stepped in waving it off.

Super bantamweight Angel Pizarro, 3-0 (2), of Philly returned to action stopping Joseph Cole, 1-3 (1), of Marvero, LA, at 1:54 of the second round.

In the first round Cole missed with a lead right but caught Pizarro with the follow-up left to the chin. With about 30 seconds to go in the round Pizarro dropped Cole with a left hook to the chin. After the bell Cole took a swipe at Pizarro and was warned by referee Bashir. In the second round Pizarro dropped Cole with a left hook to the chin. Upon beating the count Cole was stormed by Pizarro who rocked him with a right hand causing referee Bashir to wisely stop the bout. Angel Pizarro Sr. trains his son.

In the opening bout bantamweight Ernesto Almodovar, 2-0 (1), of Philly, halted Trevir Ballinger, 0-2 (0), of OH, at 1:28 of the fourth and final round.

In the first two rounds Almodovar was busier than Ballinger whose accuracy was off. In the third round Almodvar landed a good overhand right to the head of Ballinger getting his attention. Near the end of the round Almodovar landed a combination to the head of Ballinger who was in the corner of Almodovar making Ballinger hold on. In the fourth and final round Almodovar landed a hard right uppercut making Ballinger hold on and trying to get to the final bell but it didn’t happen. Almodovar landed a flurry of punches having Ballinger in a neutral corner making referee Clark wisely put a stop to it. Angel Pizarro, Sr. trains Almodovar.

3-Division world champion Mikey Garcia entered the ring with Branden Pizarro. Upon being asked he said he was no longer under contract to Cameron Dunkin who still manages Terrance Crawford.

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Philly Heavyweight Joey “The Tank” Dawejko Back in Action Tonight!


Philly Heavyweight Joey “The Tank” Dawejko Back in Action Tonight!
By: Ken Hissner

The MGM National Harbor, Oxon Hill, MD, will be back in action tonight via Sho Box. Popular Philly heavyweight Joey “The Tank” Dawejko, 17-4-3 (10), will have his first fight in 2017 when he takes on Rodney Hernandez, 10-5-1 (2), of Modesto, CA, who has never been stopped. In his two of his losses he has gone the distance with China’s 6:06 giant and Olympic Medalist Zhilei Zhang, 14-0 (10) and Poland’s power punching Adam Kownacki, 15-0 (12).

Dawejko has scored seven stoppages in the first round of his ten stoppages. He has that “Philly left hook” that “Smokin Joe Frazier made famous out of Philly”.

Dawejko had a very successful amateur career and is considered a “Giant Killer” at 5:10 and two-hundred fifty-five in his last bout in December.

Dawejko is managed by Marc Cipparone’s Club 1957 Management out of South Philly. It will be scheduled for 8 rounds but don’t be surprised if the “Tank” ends it early!

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