Jessie Magdaleno vs. Isaac Dogboe moved to April 28
By Chris Williams: With the Jeff Horn vs. Terence Crawford fight now postponed until May or June, the undercard fight between WBO super bantamweight champion Jessie Magdaleno (25-0, 18 KOs) vs. Isaac Dogboe (18-0, 12 KOs) has been moved by Top Rank to April 28 at the Liacouras Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. This will be televised on ESPN. Magdaleno vs. Dogboe is the fight that the hardcore boxing fans seem far more interested in compared to the Horn vs. Crawford fight, which is arguably a mismatch. That fight is viewed as a showcase fight for Crawford to make him look good.
On the same card on April 28, heavyweight contender Bryant Jennings (22-2, 13 KOs) will be fighting 27-year-old journeyman Joey Dawejko (19-4-4, 11 KOs). Top Rank signed the 33-year-old former heavyweight world title challenger Jennings last year, and he’s won three fights since coming back from a 2-year layoff.
Jennings hasn’t been facing quality opposition, but he World Boxing Organization has moved him to the No.8 position with their organization. If Jennings keeps winning, he’ll get a life-changing title shot against champion Anthony Joshua in the future.
Horn vs. Crawford was previously scheduled to take place on ESPN on April 14 at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, Nevada. Crawford, 30, suffered a right-hand training and he can’t fight next month on the 14th of April. Top Rank boss Bob Arum is hoping to move it to May. If not May, then in June. It all depends on how quickly Crawford’s hand heals. As of now, May 19th is the date that Horn and Crawford will be facing each other.
“There’s no ligament tear, nothing, he took the MRI and so forth,” Arum said to RingTV.com. “He has to rest it for a couple of weeks. So we’ll probably do it sometime in May or maybe the first weekend in June.”
The fight between IBF super flyweight champion Jerwin Ancajas (29-1-1, 20 KOs) and Jonas Sultan (14-3, 9 KOs) will stay with the Horn vs. Crawford fight card. Top Rank wants to build Ancajas into a star the way they did with Manny Pacquiao. They have a tougher job in trying to do that though, as the 26-year-old Ancajas isn’t as fast or as dominating as Pacquiao was earlier in his career. Top Rank isn’t pushing Ancajas to fight the best, which could slow him down from becoming a popular fighter.
They’re matching him against guys that aren’t well known to the hardcore or the casual boxing fans in Israel Gonzalez and now Jonas Sultan. Ancajas’ popularity would increase overnight if Top Rank were willing to match him against WBC super flyweight champion Srisaket Sor Rungvisai or Juan Francisco Estrada. Those two are viewed as the best fighters at 115 now that Naoya Inoue has moved up to bantamweight. There’s also WBA champion Khalid Yafai that would be a great option for Ancajas if Top Rank were willing to make a fight between them.
There hasn’t been too much complaining from boxing fans on Tuesday about the news of Crawford’s hand injury and the subsequent postponement of his April 14th fight against WBO welterweight champion Jeff Horn. Crawford (32-0, 23 KOs) unified the 140 lb. weight class last year in August in stopping IBF/WBA light welterweight champion Julius Indongo in the 3rd round. At the time, Crawford’s feat was seen as a big deal by boxing fans in stopping the 35-year-old Indongo. But last weekend, Regis Prograis took the shine away from Crawford’s accomplishment by stopping Indongo in the 2nd round.
Right now, Crawford still has his cache with boxing fans, but it’s now unclear how good he is. When you see guys like Progais doing a better job of defeating Indongo than Crawford, it leaves open the question of whether the Nebraska native is just a highly hyped fighter with a lot of easy wins over weak opposition on his resume. We could see the bottom drop out on Crawford’s career when he starts fighting good opposition at 147. That probably won’t happen right away because he’s not facing a good welterweight in his first fight in that weight class. Horn is nowhere near the same league as the talents at 147 like Errol Spence Jr., Keith Thurman and Shawn Porter.
Horn is a belt holder and nothing more. He won the WBO belt under a dark cloud in beating Manny Pacquiao in a foul-filled fight last July in his hometown of Brisbane, Australia. The judges gave Horn the victory, but he was the loser of the fight in the eyes of many boxing fans. Crawford might not get exposed by Horn, but when/if he ever faces the good welterweights, we could see him brought back to earth and shown that he’s not what many people thought he was. Horn is arguably a junior middleweight, who is somehow able to melt down to 147 to fight against welterweights.
Crawford is going to have to deal with a really big fighter, and somehow figure out how to beat him without spoiling for 12 rounds. Top Rank won’t be having Crawford fight Horn in his hometown of Brisbane the way they did with Pacquiao. It’s unclear why Top Rank isn’t having Crawford fight Horn in Australia the way they did with Pacquiao. It seems like it should have been the opposite. Since Pacquiao is far more popular than Crawford, Top Rank should have had Pacquiao fight Horn in the U.S or in at another neutral venue.
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