Heavyweight Joey Dawejko’s Last Shot Opportunity
Editorial By Robert Brizel, Head Real Combat Media Boxing Correspondent
*Photo Credit: Robert Brizel, Real Combat Media
Once upon a time, Greg Page was rumored to have decked Mike Tyson in sparring practice. More recently, Anthony Joshua was rumored to have been decked by sparring partner Joey Dawejko in sparring practice, exposing Joshua’s chin well before the Andy Ruiz Jr. debacle.
Joey Dawejko is short and powerful, and remains one of the heavyweight division’s hardest hitters. However, Joey Dawejko has two flaws. One, he is too short to be in the heavyweight division. Two, defensive counterpunchers have consistently given him trouble, whereby Dawejko’s power has been neutralized into a long-range strategic game plan war. Refusing advise to shrink to cruiserweight in favor of his appetite, Dawejko has fought his entire career in the wrong division. Cruiserweight was where he needed to be. With heavy, stocky legs, perhaps Dawejko believed he could not reduce his weight down to 200 pounds.
At 19-7-4 with 11 knockouts, 5’10” and 230 to 250 pounds roughly, Dawejko is beyond a shot at the heavyweight title and has been reduced to almost journeyman status. The issues with Dawejko amount to more than just height, weight and size. Dawejko is a hard-working fighter, Dawejko has gone the distance 18 times at the four, six, eight and 10 rounds distance. Dawejko is 0-4 at the 10 round distance in decisions fought, 3-0-2 in eighth rounders fought to the distance, 3-2-1 in six rounders fought to the distance, and 3-0-1 in four rounders fought to the distance. Fighters such as Charles Martin, Amir Mansour, Dorset Barnwell, Didier Spence, Bryant Jennings, Ytalo Perea, Sergey Kuzmin, Rodney Hernandez, and Andrey Fedosov have given Dawejko oodles of trouble, when the counterpuncher is not drawn in to slugging it out with Dawejko, besides his atomic bomb power punch, Dawejko has no alternate game plan, like a George Foreman befuddled by a slip punch defensive counter puncher Jimmy Young.
Now 26-1 former IBF and WBA Super World Cruiserweight champion Murat Gassiev, a super champion elite fighter, will move up to heavyweight to challenge Dawejko on July 27, 2019, in Virginia in a scheduled 10 rounder. With his power neutralized, Dawejko, in a Fedosov repeat, is unlikely to win a round against Gassiev unless Dawejko can take him out. The good feature about Joey Dawejko is he is a ‘you never know what will happen fighter’ at times. Gassiev will likely outpoint Dawejko and stay away, knowing Dawejko’s tree trunk like legs weigh Dawejko down and slow him down in an extended battle. Perhaps Joey’s last shot bout will convince Dawejko to drop down to cruiserweight. In any case, regardless, the odds of a Joey Dawejko upset over ex-champ Gassiev remain unlikely.