UNCASVILLE, Connecticut – Joe Goossen admits it was tough to find sparring partners capable of imitating Jaron Ennis during Sergey Lipinets’ recently completed training camp.
Lipinets’ veteran trainer knows it won’t be easy, either, for his fighter to deal with the intelligent Ennis’ improvisational style Saturday night. Goossen genuinely feels Lipinets can beat Ennis, though, in part because the undefeated Philadelphia native won’t be reluctant to stand and fight Lipinets at times during their 12-round welterweight bout at Mohegan Sun Arena.
Ennis, who switches stances, is athletic, multidimensional and able to box well from safe distances. His willingness to engage has made Ennis fun to watch, but Goossen expects that trait to open up opportunities for Lipinets in their “Showtime Championship Boxing” main event.
“He’s tall, he’s a left-hander and he’s got a lot of knockouts,” Goossen told BoxingScene.com. “The good thing is he’ll fight you. The bad thing is he’ll fight you. But it’s a good thing that he’ll fight us. I’m assuming he’s going to do that because he normally does. He usually comes out of the gate pretty hot. It’s a lot better than having to chase somebody around the ring. So, I appreciate the fact that he will make a stand, Jaron Ennis. I think that’s good for us because it’s tough chasing a guy around a ring.”
Goossen believes Custio Clayton’s movement in Lipinets’ last fight made matters tougher for his boxer, who revealed recently that he hurt his hamstring in the third round of that 12-round fight for the IBF interim welterweight title. Canada’s Clayton (18-0-1, 12 KOs) and Lipinets (16-1-1, 12 KOs) fought to a 12-round majority draw October 24 at Mohegan Sun Arena.
“We didn’t have to chase Lamont Peterson around the ring,” Goossen said in reference to Lipinets’ 10th-round, technical-knockout win in March 2019. “He stood his ground with us, and I think that was beneficial to us. And that [Jayar] Inson kid, [Manny Pacquiao’s] guy, he came after us. He was a tall left-hander as well. But he fought us, and that worked out good [a second-round TKO in July 2019]. And then, Custio Clayton, you saw what happened there.
“When you’ve gotta chase somebody around the ring, it’s never aesthetically good to look at and it’s difficult. My preference is to have somebody to fight us. That’s why I said the good thing is Jaron Ennis will fight you, and the bad thing is he’ll fight you, because when you’ve got two guys that can crack with Sergey and Ennis, it’s dangerous for both guys. But that’s what makes this a real intriguing fight to me.”
The 23-year-old Ennis (26-0, 24 KOs, 1 NC) is anxious to prove himself against the most accomplished opponent of his five-year pro career. He is a 12-1 favorite to beat Lipinets, who has lost just a 12-round unanimous decision to Mikey Garcia (40-1, 30 KOs) in their 140-pound title fight in March 2018 at Freeman Coliseum in San Antonio.
“It’s a very tough fight for both guys,” Goossen said. “I think the early rounds are really gonna tell the tale. You’ve got two corners that have been around a long time, two fighters that are dangerous and two fighters that are willing to fight and go for it. So, this is a winner, I think, for TV and for the fans. I really do.”
Showtime will televise two 12-round bouts before Ennis-Lipinets, starting at 9 p.m. ET.
Lithuania’s Eimantas Stanionis (12-0, 9 KOs) will oppose Puerto Rico’s Thomas Dulorme (25-4-1, 16 KOs) in the co-feature, a WBA welterweight eliminator. The Philippines’ Jerwin Ancajas (32-1-2, 22 KOs) and Mexico’s Jonathan Rodriguez (22-1, 16 KOs), the mandatory challenger for Ancajas’ IBF junior bantamweight title, will open this tripleheader in a 115-pound title fight.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.