Hard-luck middleweight Dashon Johnson, of Escondido, CA, who came within seconds of upsetting Jesse Hart recently at the 2300 Arena, returns to the same ring when he takes on DeCarlo Perez , of Atlantic City, NJ, in the scheduled eight-round main event Friday evening, June 3. First of seven fights is at 7 p.m.
Johnson, 28, who floored the unbeaten Hart in the sixth (waived off by the referee Ernie Sharif) and in the closing seconds of the 10th round, lost a unanimous decision March 18 by scores of 95-94, 97-92, and 98-91, but later filed a protest over the work of Sharif.
A pro since 2008, Johnson has made a career out of fighting some of the best junior middleweights, middleweights and super middleweights, going 19-19-4, 6 K0s against the kind of schedule you rarely see any longer in boxing.
Twelve of Johnson’s opponents were unbeaten when he fought them and his list of opposition includes: Julian Williams, Glen Tapia, Luis Arias, Jermell Charlo, Dominic Wade, Sergio Mora, Craig McEwan, Louis Rose, Adam Trupish, Daquan Arnett and Yudell Johnson.
Only Williams has managed to stop him in 42 fights. Johnson had won four in a row, including a revenge win over Mike Gravonski, before losing to Hart.
“I’m excited to be coming back to Philly, a place where the fans appreciate me for my fighting style and my grind rather than looking at my record,” Johnson said. “I’m grateful to Peltz Boxing for bringing me back and I am looking to pick up right where I left off and put up a great show for the fans.”
Perez (right), 25, knows a victory over Johnson will get his career back on track after suffering a setback Jan. 22 when he was stopped by Rob Brant, of St. Paul, MN, in the fourth round of their Jan. 22 fight in Tucson, AZ, for the vacant NABA middleweight title.
Drained by making 160 for that match, Perez has decided to put on a few pounds and grow into the super middleweight division. The fight with Johnson will be contested at 164 pounds.
“I know people will criticize me about my last fight but that is behind me,” Perez said. “My focus is on my future and destroying everything and everyone who steps into the ring with me. That was a different fighter (against Brant). I wasn’t myself throughout camp but as a fighter I’m not going to run away from a fight. All I can do is fix my mistakes and what was wrong and come back better than ever.
“I have refocused myself purely on my boxing career—and nothing else. Come June 3, everyone will see a completely different fighter.
“I feel this fight against Dashon Johnson is going to be a great competitive fight. He has been in there with good fighters but I believe on June 3 he will be facing his toughest challenge. I know he will be ready and I will make sure I am above and beyond prepared.”
A pro since 2010, Perez is 15-4-1, 5 K0s, and he is 3-0 at the 2300 Arena, where he outpointed Jesse Nicklow and scored knockouts over Tyrone Brunson and Tolan Tascoe.
Prior to the Brant fight, Perez had won nine out of 10, including an impressive win on ShoBox last summer against Juan Ubaldo Cabrera, of the Dominican Republic, who was 23-0 at fight time.