Posted by George Hanson., Jr Esq. on Nov 19, 2014
Knock, Knock!—Dawejko Steamrolls Johnson

Knock, Knock!—Dawejko Steamrolls Johnson

The Mouthpiece
Knock, Knock!—Dawejko Steamrolls Johnson
By: George Hanson Jr., Esq.

Date: Friday, November 14, 2014
Venue: Harrah’s Chester Casino & Racetrack, Chester, Pennsylvania
Promoters: XF Events and King’s Promotion,
Ring Announcer: Nino Del Buono
National Anthem: Greg Martiello
Referees: Benjy Esteves Jr. & Shawn Clark
Matchmaker: Marshall Kauffman
Coverage: www.gofightlive.com
Photos: www.christoneyphotography.com

Knock, Knock! Who’s there? Tank! Tank who? You are welcome.

It took me more time to think of that opening and probably even more for some of you to get the joke than it did for Philly heavyweight Joey “The Tank” Dawejko (12 wins – 3 losses – 2 draws – 5 kos) to dismantle, destroy, dispose and dismiss Rayford Johnson—leaving the Texas Longhorns’ fan with his ears ringing somewhat in a daze submerged in pugilistic purple haze at 2:28 of the opening round. Hell, Dawejko’s ring walk with trainer Billy Briscoe, manager Mark Cipparone and their entourage from 1957 Club Management was more time consuming!

Dawejko (L.) lands a hard left hook.

Dawejko (L.) lands a hard left hook.

On September 19th in the same ring the 23 year-old Dawejko sent 6 feet 3 inches 288 lbs. Yohan “The Body Snatcher” Banks to the canvas three times before stopping him at 1:34 of the opening stanza. Thus, it was extremely difficult to imagine the 209 lbs. Johnson (10 wins – 15 losses – 0 draws – 6 kos)—a tad bit shorter than the 5 feet 10 inches Dawejko and 35 pounds lighter—avoiding a similar fate.

The bell rang and Dawejko stalked like a mongoose that broke into a chicken coop with a rooster as the sole occupant. The audience held its collective breath in anticipation of feathers flying as Johnson circled while jabbing. A Dawejko left hook found its mark staggering the fighter from Longview, Texas. Not wasting any time the Philadelphia pugilist launched another left hook, which careened off Johnson’s cranium sending him for a short trip to the canvas rising before referee Estevez could reach the count of three.

Dawejko (L.) watches a fallen Johnson.

Dawejko (L.) watches a fallen Johnson.

You didn’t need to be clairvoyant to understand the gravity of the situation and that Johnson could have doubled his purse had he sold the advertising space on the bottom of his boxing shoes. Dawejko was sedulous in his pursuit and was hell-bent on making sure we made it home early to catch the 11:00 PM news. He attacked pinning Johnson to the ropes cracking him to the body with combinations barely missing with a few vicious overhand rights and hooks. Wisely, Johnson clutched disrupting the rhythm and timing of his nemesis before the referee parted them. Dawejko reloaded, threw and overhand right that missed but connected with a sweeping left hook that found Johnson’s jaw sending him sideways before crashing him face first on the canvas—a Texas tattoo glistening on his back in the overhead lights.

In an incredible display of courage, Johnson rolled over, grabbed the ropes and got to a standing positon on spaghetti legs before referee Estevez reached the count of eight, hugged him and called a halt to the scheduled eight rounder. The Tank steamrolled another opponent and immediately mentioned Amir “Hard Core” Mansour as a name on his hit list. Knock, knock!

After a 22-month hiatus the talented Raymond “Tito” Serrano (18 wins – 2 losses – 0 draws – 8 kos) returned to the squared circle. It wasn’t too long ago that the gifted amateur standout joined the professional ranks as a junior-welterweight in October 2007 and was rapidly mowing down the opposition before two consecutive knockout losses to Emmanuel Taylor and Karim Mayfield derailed his promising career forcing him to take a respite, regroup and reload. Recently signed to Mark Cipparone’s 1957 Club Management, Serrano stated in our pre-fight interview, “I am excited to be back after taking time to relax and do some soul searching.” Just 25 years old, he was rejuvenated and eager to restart his career moving up to the welterweight division against veteran southpaw Wilfredo Acuna (15 wins – 15 losses – 0 draws – 12 kos) of Managua, Nicaragua in a scheduled six-rounder.

Serrano’s fans were boisterous from the beginning and throughout the bout as their man stalked his adversary in the opening round. The action was sporadic as Serrano familiarized himself with every inch of the squared circle, reclaiming his space and timing shedding ring rust while controlling the pace. Round after round Serrano attacked the body occasionally with hooks and combinations showing good ring generalship as Acuna seemed to be committed to landing one big straight left from the southpaw stance. However, Serrano’s defense was impregnable as he slipped or parried the punches pirouetting off the ropes keeping the action in the center of the ring. There were no knockdowns or instances of either fighter in dire straits. But, Acuna suffered a cut over his right eye in the fourth stanza that was assumed to be caused by a punch since referee Clark never indicated it was the result of a head-butt. At the conclusion of the round, Acuna indicated to Clark that he was unable to continue and Serrano was declared the winner by technical knockout at 3:00 of round four.

Serrano (L.) looking for an opening.

Serrano (L.) looking for an opening.

After Serrano’s hand was raised in victory, photographer Chris Toney asked him to pose for a picture which he happily honored quipping, “I’m back, I’m back!” They bumped fist to glove as the photographer congratulated the pugilist and snapped his photograph. Welcome back Tito!

It never ceases to amaze me that three arbiters of a boxing match can witness the same occurrence but reach different conclusions. Heavyweight Randy Easton (2 wins – 4 losses – 0 draws – 2 kos) of Williamsport, Pennsylvania was hoodwinked, bamboozled and led astray by two of the three judges who robbed him of a well-earned four-round decision over Dan “The General” Bolden (2 wins – 3 losses – 0 draws – 1 ko) of Louisiana.

Easton attacked his smaller foe at the opening bell whacking him with right hooks around the left ear. Bolden spent much of his time with his back to the ropes and was in trouble in the second round when Easton unloaded for about twenty seconds with referee Clark ready to call a halt. But, Bolden was able to survive by throwing a few punches. The third round was fought on even terms and could have been scored for either combatant. But Easton clearly won the final round by being busier and again pinning Bolden on the ropes. One judge mirrored my scorecard of 39-37 for Easton but was overruled by the two blind mice that had identical scores of 39-37 for Bolden. The audience showed its displeasure by booing.

Trainer George Peterson guided Paul “The Punisher” Williams to two world titles and is leading the way for undefeated super-middleweight Immanuwel “The Chosen One” Aleem (10 wins – 0 losses – 0 draws – 6 kos) of Richmond, Virginia. Tonight, the clever and artistic fighter conducted a boxing clinic—giving Angel Antonio Martinez (6 wins – 8 losses – 3 draws – 1 ko) lessons on the art of the sweet science before dismissing him at 2.44 of the fifth round of the scheduled six-rounder.

The 21 year-old Aleem was just too fast and too smart for the 35 year-old pugilist from North Miami Beach Florida. From the opening bell he stood in front of Martinez peppering him with a quick left jab to the head and pit of the stomach raking the journeyman fighter with hooks to the ribcage. Martinez plodded forward but he was always a step behind the capable Al Haymon-signed boxer. Aleem dissected Martinez like a bullfrog with the poise and precision of a top-notch biology student. Round after round he surgically dismantled the slower boxer. It was inevitable that this fight wasn’t going to be won by decision. Thus, in the fifth round Aleem dropped Martinez with a left hook punctuated by a hard right. Martinez was able to get to his feet before referee Estevez reached the count of four. But, it was apparent that he was in no condition to continue and was spared further punishment as Estevez stopped the fight.

Aleem (L.) crushes Martinez with a left hook.

Aleem (L.) crushes Martinez with a left hook.

“Nothing compares to being in the ring,” stated Philly junior-featherweight Alex “Macho” Barbosa during our pre-fight interview. Barbosa (4 wins – 1 losses – 1 draw – 1 ko) was returning after a 22-month lay-off in which the Temple University graduate was busy as the General Manager for UFC Gym in Cherry Hill and as a ring announcer for many professional and amateur shows. “I got to follow my heart. I still wanted at least one more fight,” he added.

The southpaw Barbosa squared off against Benjamin “The Shadow” Burgos (1 wins – 9 losses – 1 draw – 0 ko) of Mount Pocono, Pennsylvania in a scheduled four-rounder. It was a spirited, tactical bout with the taller Burgos attacking at the opening bell. The elusive Barbosa used lateral movement and a right jab to keep Burgos at a distance hurting him in the closing moments of the round with a straight left followed by a combination. Burgos took the second round on my scorecard by being a little busier than Barbosa who outworked him in the remaining rounds. Burgos captured a majority decision as two judges scored it for him 39-37 while the third had it 38-38—a draw. The decision wasn’t as egregious as was the case in Easton’s bout. However, many at ringside gave the nod to Barbosa.

It was another exciting night of boxing as the capacity crowd enjoyed the action. Dawejko scored his third consecutive first round knockout and Serrano showed little ring rust in his triumphant return. Aleem was impressive in displaying his pugilistic wares. Unfortunately Easton and Barbosa suffered at the eyes of two blind mice.

Knock, knock!

Who’s there?

Boo!

Boo Who?

Please don’t cry now that you are at the end of this article.

Continue to support the sweet science, and remember, always carry your mouthpiece!

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About George Hanson., Jr Esq.

George Hanson., Jr Esq. has written 106 post in this blog.

Hailing from New Forest, Jamaica, Hanson started boxing as a teenager in Philadelphia under the tutelage of former welterweight contender, Dick Turner. He excelled, capturing four Pennsylvania State Amateur Championships—his last while a junior at Drexel University studying Accounting. According to most who have seen Hanson fight, “He is the best fighter never to have turned professional.”



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