Both Jaron “Boots” Ennis and Joshua Jones made their professional debuts on April 30th at St. George, Utah, with both scoring knockouts! Both were scheduled to make their Philadelphia debuts May 14th at the Sheet Metal Workers Hall in South Philadelphia. Unfortunately Jones suffered an injury in training and had to pull out of the show.
This writer interviewed both Ennis and Jones Thursday at Bozy’s Dungeon in North Philadelphia which is operated by Boot’s father/trainer “Bozy” Ennis. “Bozy” also shares training Jones with Aaron Ford who works out of the Marion Anderson Rec Center in South Philadelphia. “He is the most pleasant and respectful boxer I have ever trained. He shows a lot of heart and has more power than people know. He is very heavy handed and has a great killer instinct,” said Ford (of Jones).
Both boxers signed a managerial contract with Cameron Dunkin who has made a habit of managing world champions like Kelly Pavlik, Timothy Bradley, Brandon Rios, Nonito Donaire, Steven Luevano, Terrance “Budd” Crawford, Mikey Garcia and Danny Romero.
“It was the best move for me. He made me feel like a family member,” said “Boots”. Victory Promotions were the promoters of the show in Utah. “I have known Cameron for some time having both Anthony “Messenger” Thompson and Demetrius Hopkins signed with him,” said “Bozy”.
Both boxers have extensive amateur careers behind them. At 18 Ennis is the best looking prospect since 1984 Olympic Gold Medalists and world champion Meldrick Taylor. “I felt great after the first win and thought when’s my next fight?” said Ennis. He finished his amateur career at 58-3 losing a pair of controversial bouts with Gary Antonio Russell after defeating him in their first of three meetings. He won the National Golden Gloves championship in 2015.
Russell had to drop from the current USA Olympic team so Ennis was asked to fill in. “Even if my son didn’t turn professional already there is no way I would let him replace Russell whom he beat but never got the decisions,” said “Bozy”.
The younger Ennis has two brothers in Derek “Pooh” Ennis who was the USBA junior middleweight champion and Farah Ennis who was NABF super middleweight champion. “Only saw him (Ennis) in the gym a few times but when I watched him work out my impression was like he already looked like a seasoned professional. He has natural talent and works hard. His father has the experience to guide his pro career to the top level. He’s gonna to be fun to watch develop in the pro ranks,” said Jimmy Deoria (manager, trainer and gym head).
Among those who “Boots” has sparred with is almost too numerous to mention but here goes: former world champion Kermit Cintron, Emmanuel Taylor, Sam Teah, unbeaten Scott Kelleher, unbeaten Omar “Super O” Douglas, Anthony Flores, Angel Ocasio, Mikael Zewski, unbeaten Milton Santiago, Tommy “Cornflake” Lamanna, Jerome Conquest, unbeaten super welterweight contender Julian Williams, current Olympian Shakur Stevenson and even 2012 female Olympic Gold Medalist Claressa Shields. The list goes on and on. While at the gym daily he attends Authentic Life Church at Broad & Thompson on Sundays.
Several Philly boxers gave their opinion. “He has all the potential and in time will be a world champion,” said unbeaten Damon Allen. Heavyweight Joey Dawejko said “He is one good boxer with a great future.” World ranked welterweight contender who is trained by ‘Bozy” the “New” Ray Robinson had the following to say, “Boots will be world champion, not a doubt in my mind. He is fast, strong, smart and has great timing. His work ethic is amazing and he can box orthodox or southpaw. He can throw a 10 punch combination in a blink of an eye.”
In making his debut “Boots” came out southpaw surprising his opponent Corey Mildrew who only lasted 0:45 of the first round. A three punch combination put him down which included the count. “I thought it surprised him with me coming out southpaw,” said “Boots”. In his next fight he will meet Puerto Rico’s Luis Ramos at the PA Sheet Metal Workers Hall in South Philly on May 14th.
Jones after his debut knockout over Jason Thompson said, “It’s always been my dream to be a professional boxer. I watched boxers like Floyd Mayweather, Jr., and “Canelo” Alvarez”. Jones has won such titles as PA Golden Gloves, PAL and Junior Olympics. His amateur record was 70-25. Pertaining to new manager Cameron Dunkin he said, “He really makes me feel comfortable”.
Jones has sparred with such boxers as Karl “Dynamite” Dargan, “Hammerin” Hank Lundy, Damon Allen, Milton Santiago, Frank Trader, and fought Gervonta Davis in the amateurs.
“As a baby Jaron “Boots” Ennis probably had a mouthpiece in his mouth before he had a pacifier. The baby of the Ennis brothers, he is a hybrid of his siblings. He combines the speed and quickness of Derek (Pooh) with the height and power of Farah (Quiet Storm). It is inevitable he brings back a title to Philadelphia,” said George Hanson (top Philly writer).
Joshua Jones is a coach’s dream — a quiet, intelligent student of the game with plenty of power in both hands fighting from the southpaw stance. He reminds me of WBO junior-welterweight champion Terence “Bud” Crawford,” added George Hanson, Jr. (writer for Fight Kings).
“They are two great kids with a great future,” said Brittany Rogers (BAM Promotions).
“This writer cannot say enough about both young men in and out of the ring. With only one world champion at this time we look forward in Philadelphia to watch both develop into world champions!