They say that whenever a door closes, a window opens elsewhere.
Must be true. When the door closed on tomorrow night's main event between rising welterweight contender Mike Jones and Larry Mosley, because of a strained left bicep muscle incurred by Jones in training, a window of opportunity opened for Jones' stablemate, super bantamweight prospect Teon Kennedy.
Kennedy (12-0, 5 KOs), from North Philadelphia, moves up into the marquee event of the seven-bout card at Bally's Atlantic City, an eight-rounder against Lucian Gonzalez (9-5-1, 1 KO), of Reading.
Kennedy and Jones, also from North Philly, are co-promoted by J Russell Peltz and the Hands, Joe Sr. and Joe Jr., and co-managed by Doc Nowicki and Jim Williams. To date they have appeared on the same card four times, with Jones (17-0, 15 KOs) - further along in his professional development - always getting more prominent slots.
But while Jones, 26, might get a shot at a world title sooner if he continues to win, Kennedy, 22, could have just as high a ceiling. Peltz has likened him to former WBA bantamweight champion "Joltin' " Jeff Chandler, who was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 2000.
"Teon is a much more advanced fighter at this stage of his career than Chandler was," Peltz said. "Jeff only had two amateur fights. Teon has had a ton of them, and was a Golden Gloves national champion."
Should Kennedy get past Gonzalez, he likely would be in line to fight for the vacant USBA super bantamweight title.
Peltz likes the fact that Kennedy not only overcame a knockdown and a bad cut in his most recent bout, an eight-round split-decision over Andre Wilson on March 6 at the Blue Horizon, but relished having had to test himself in what to date has been the toughest fight of his pro career.
"He came out of the ring afterward and said, 'I really enjoyed that fight,' " Peltz said of Kennedy. "You don't usually hear that from someone who has been in a blood-and-guts struggle for the first time."
Also moving up, to the top rung on the undercard, is North Philly middleweight Latif Mundy (8-0-1, 3 KOs), who squares off against the dangerous Patrick Majewski (10-0, 7 KOs), who was born in Poland and now lives in Atlantic City. *