Junior middleweight contender Derek “Pooh” Ennis (19-2-1, 13 KOs), almost had his boxing career derailed on April 11th when he weighed in over the junior middleweight limit for his USBA title bout in Atlantic City against Ishmail Arvin. When an agreement between parties could not be made, the bout was canceled. It was the second time missing the limit for the rising prospect. The disappointment placed Derek Ennis at crossroads in his career on whether he could be trusted to make the junior middleweight limit in future fights. This all changed in recent months as Ennis has not only made the contracted weight in his last three bouts, but has even weighed in three pounds lighter than the junior middleweight limit.
The junior middleweight from Philadelphia recently solidified his standing in the junior middleweight division by capturing the USBA junior middleweight title on October 16th with a resounding unanimous decision victory over Eromosele Albert. Weighing in at a lean 151.5, Ennis looked in great shape as he countered and moved well in the biggest bout of his comeback.
“First of all, we would like to apologize to Diane Fischer of Dee Lee Promotions for failing to make weight back in October,” said his co-manager, Moz Gonzalez of E&M Management Group. “Derek’s problem was not that he was out of shape, but that he had added a weight lifting routine to his workouts. We have since added a nutritionist and put him back on his old training routine and his weight is now under control.”
Eddie Woods also reiterated that his weight will not be a concern in the future. “Derek looks fantastic now under the 154 pound weight limit. We are looking to really step him up and fight some of the top junior middleweights in the world this year.”
“I feel great at junior middleweight again” said Ennis. “I was not drained at all and it showed as I easily went twelve rounds in winning the USBA title. Now with my weight problem behind me, I can focus on taking my boxing to the next level as I move toward a world title shot.2010 is going to be a big year for me and I hope to be fighting for a world title by the end of the year.”
Promoter Mike Fingerman stepped up and continued to have faith in him when many would have abandoned ship. The long run looks like it will finally pay off.
Before Ennis can make the leap to the top ten, he must first get by the always dangerous Edwin Vazquez (22-14-2, 8 KOs) on January 15th at the Arena in South Philadelphia. “I hope everybody comes out to see me because I am going to put on quite a show,” said the confident Ennis.