Jennings vs Rivas : He’s paired with Philadelphia’s Bryant Jennings, a guy who has taken on Wladimir Klitschko and Luis Ortiz. Both were losing efforts but the former was a game performance. It’s a big jump.
Jennings, like Rivas, wants to press and get behind the jab. He doesn’t mind mixing it up and displays a craft you often see of Philly fighters. “By-By” has long arms (84” reach) for his height (6’3”), too. This, at least on paper, looks as if it may provide enough sustained action to keep a fan’s attention, on top of some adjustments so as not to be a sloppy brawl.
Jennings is coming off of a busy 2018 where he fought three times in the calendar year. In his previous bout, Jennings took on Alexander Dimitrenko in a tougher than expected match. The Philadelphia fighter was knocked down in the fourth round and rallied back scoring three knockdowns en route to a ninth round stoppage victory.
At this time Jennings isn’t considered one of the elite heavyweights in the division who should be up for a title shot. However, his resume is undoubtedly one of the best in the division with victories over Mike Perez and Artur Szpilka.
In 2015, Jennings took on two of the best heavyweights in the world back to back when he faced Wladimir Klitschko in April of 2015 and ended the year by taking on the perceived most feared heavyweight at the time, Luis Ortiz. Jennings lost to Klitschko via unanimous decision, but had his moments against the future Hall of Famer in a competitive bout.
At age 34, Jennings still has plenty of time in continuing to rebuild his career to earn another world title opportunity. In the heavyweight division, many of the top fighters are in there 30’s giving Jennings more time to perfect his craft rather than keep up with younger opponents.
Jennings does have the height and reach advantage standing at six foot three with an 84-inch reach compared to Rivas standing at six feet with a 76 and a half-inch reach. The goal for Top Rank will be to get Jennings back into contention for a heavyweight title. On Friday night another roadblock will be put in front of Jennings to push down.