Matchroom want to add Jaron Ennis to growing stable

Matchroom have made an offer to Jaron “Boots” Ennis to make the first defence of his IBF welterweight title with them during the coming months.

The 26 year old was in November elevated to the status of champion when the IBF controversially stripped Terence Crawford, and with his options perhaps greater than ever he is considering his next move.

Ennis last fought under the banner of Premier Boxing Champions when in July he excelled in stopping Roiman Villa in 10 rounds. His talent has long been recognised but he awaits a defining fight, and Eddie Hearn hopes that that is something Matchroom will soon be able to deliver.

“We’ve been talking for years,” he told ProBox TV. “The thing is with ‘Boots’, one of the comments from [father and trainer Derek Ennis] ‘Bozy’ was, ‘Can Matchroom deliver us the other champions?’. Can anyone? Because he’s that good. The other champions are not gonna wanna fight Ennis, because his profile’s not big enough. 

“[Devin] Haney is getting to a stage where, actually, it’s worth the risk, because he’s a big star. So we need to get Ennis to that – it’s only going to take six-to-12 months. We need to get him to that level where another welterweight will fight him because it’s a big fight. Not, ‘I ain’t fighting Ennis’. 

“Conor Benn’s going to me, ‘I’ll fight Ennis’. If I brought him to Spurs [the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium], I’m sure it’d sell, but he’d be better off fighting [Adrien] Broner. We’ve got to build his profile. It’s mad, but that’s what the game’s about. 

“It’s to build him in [his home city] Philadelphia. I think he’s No 1 at 147lbs, if [Terence] Crawford moves up. Maybe even with Crawford as well. Hopefully we can do something.

“We’ve made him offers. I don’t know if anything will happen but we’d love it to.”

If Crawford moves to 154lbs for his likely rematch with Errol Spence then Ennis would immediately be viewed as the finest welterweight in the world. 

The potential presence of Ennis and Devin Haney at Matchroom would therefore give the promoters perhaps the leading fighters at 147lbs and 140lbs, and reflecting on Haney’s victory in December over Regis Prograis, Hearn said: “He become a star, and by the way, he deserves it, because he done his thing with us, he went to Australia twice, beat [George] Kambosos in his backyard, come back, beat [Vasyl] Lomachenko… 

“Forget how close that fight was – he still fought him. A lot of people wouldn’t. Then he sold out in San Fran[cisco] – he’s becoming a star, and he’s a good kid. Nice young man. 

“It could be Conor Benn [fights him next]. He wants me to try and make that fight. Conor wants that fight. He could fight [Subriel] Matias. He could fight Ryan Garcia. He could fight ‘Tank’ [Gervonta Davis]. He’s in a really good position right now.

“[Prograis] could fight Matias as well, or he could fight Richardson Hitchins, or he could fight [Jack] Catterall. We’ve got a lot of 140lbers that we need to make things happen for.”