By Joseph Santoliquito
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Top Rank plans to hold a major nationally televised boxing card at Temple’s Liacouras Center on Saturday, April 28, at 4 p.m., featuring Philly fighters Bryant Jennings, Jesse Hart and Joey Dawejko.
The main event will feature WBO junior featherweight champ Jessie Magdaleno (25-0, 18 KOs) in his second title defense against undefeated Isaac Dogboe (18-0, 12 KOs). Magdaleno is a very talented fighter who won the WBO by beating star Nonito Donaire in November 2016.
The card will also give Jennings, a heavyweight, his first chance to fight in his hometown since 2012. Jennings (22-2, 13 KOs) will face Dawejko (19-4-4, 11 KOs) in a 10-round heavyweight in what promises to be an exciting fight, given Dawejko’s penchant for coming straight forward, coupled with Jennings wanting to impress the home crowd. A Benjamin Franklin High grad, Jennings, 33, has been in the ring with championship contender Luis Ortiz and fought heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko in April 2015, in Madison Square Garden.
“Joey has nice skill set, but he’s not on my level,” Jennings said. “It’s definitely nice to be fighting at home. Joey is a good fighter, but for me this is a big risk, without enough reward. Joey will come and bring it, I know that for sure. He’s also there to be hit. Maybe they don’t think I hit hard, or something. Joey has something coming for him. I think I can sharpen my boxing skills, and I’m already in shape.
“I’m not taking Joey for granted. I know what I’m up against and I know there will be added pressure because it’s me that he’s fighting. But he’s not on my level. I fought Joey in his last amateur fight. It was my third fight ever and I started in January in 2009, and I fought him in April 2009. He won the decision, but he really didn’t win the fight. You can say there is a little payback involved.”
Hart (23-1, 19 KOs) is taking on Demond Nicholson (18-2-1, 17 KOs) in a 10-round super middleweight fight. Hart, 28, is looking to build a winning streak after suffering his first pro loss, a close, though unanimous setback to WBO super middle champ Gilberto Ramirez back in September. Hart has since beaten Thomas Awimbono and will look to make two-straight when he fights Nicholson. This will mark the first time Hart is fighting in Philly since 2016.
Also, Philly fight fans will be offered a special treat, with 2016 U.S. Olympian Shakur Stevenson (5-0, 2 KOs) scheduled to fight Roxberg Patrick Riley (12-0, 6 KOs) in an eight-round featherweight bout.