The much avoided, can’t get no Rodney Dangerfield respect Sergio Martinez finally landed his big bout with Son of the Legend, Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. Of course Junior has his own view of the match after finally securing a legacy bout he hopes use to put his howling critics into permanent internment.
September 15th at the Thomas & Mack Center is the place to be for the fireworks, and there should be plenty of rockets and bazooka shots on display between these two. Martinez has promised to blast the diapers off of Chavez before sending him bawling back to El Padre Sr. All the while Junior is chomping at the bit to show off his new cut to the bone physique and sporty form last featured in a spectacular combination that knocked out Andy Lee.
I would have to note that the 37 year old Martinez has shown near peak form in 4 consecutive KTFOs of Paul Williams, Serhiy Dzinziruk, and British fighters Darren Barker and Matthew Macklin, all in all fighters a grade above than the competition that Chavez Jr has fought. El Maravilla comes into this bout with an impressive career record of 49-2-2, 28 KO. The only fighter who ever really handled Martinez was 20 year old Antonio Margarito who put on his fear inducing walk’em down and blast’em to smithereens style to destroy him in a classic boxer/slugger matchup.
There’s no shame in losing to Margarito who was well on his way to a decade long Ring ranking, culminating in a Ring belt Belt and P4P rating. Martinez returned to Argentina like so many great Argentines before him to hone his style and skills to perfection before returning to the States with great success.
The 26 year old Chavez counters with consecutive wins over Sebastian Zbik, Peter Manfredo Jr, Marco Antonio Rubio, and Andy Lee, surging performances that makes out his promoter, Bob Arum as being a genius for showing patience enough to ignore the critics to give Chavez the proper boxing development, currently at 46-0-1, 32 KO. Now the promotion has the proper forward push as befits one of the few big fight events this year.
It must be mentioned that Junior comes into the fight with a sullied reputation down to testing positive for diuretics a few years back, typically used by athletes to cut weight. Recently there were reports of him missing or delaying a couple of mandatory post fight drug tests in his last two Texas fights. A few of his opponents have claimed that the scales were tampered with to get him under the steadily rising limits as he has grown from his 130 lb, 17 year old debut to a 180+ lb fighting weight middleweight, meaning that he gains an incredible 20+ lbs from the weighin to the next night of the fight.
That’s one of the biggest fight night weight gains in boxing and one never knows when the body might rebel against the torture of reducing and then regaining that amount of weight in advance of severe competition. Junior also had multiple DUI charges leveled against him during the Rubio training camp, so we can’t know how dedicated he truly is to this fight. He has always seemed to be in pretty good overall condition, but Martinez is a big step up and could expose a lack of dedication.
Chavez Jr fought Andy Lee in one of the smallest rings you’ll ever see in a championship bout, looking to be about 16′ square compared to the usual average of about 20′ square. The details of ring conditions were not released for this upcoming fight as far as I know yet, but a small ring gives more advantage to Junior who will be the bigger, stronger, younger fighter looking to leverage those assets against Martinez who is a smaller, more traditionally sized middleweight. Martinez will have to use fast footwork and combinations to move around and get in and out of Junior’s typically up close range he likes to fight at.
Junior is probably about as strong Kelly Pavlik whom Martinez outpointed thanks to a cut that was poorly attended to by the Pavlik team, so this fight may well resemble that fight initially. Thing is, Pavlik is much taller and rangier and punches much harder than does Junior, so he was more dangerous to fight and took a lot out of Martinez who was losing on the cards before Pavlik was cut.
I’m thinking Martinez will conduct a careful survey of himself and Junior before picking his spots to launch his chin cracking tests. Thus far Chavez has scarcely been fazed by a hard punch. Passing the Rubio test did a lot for everyone’s confidence since Rubio is about a hard punching a middleweight you can find.
If Martinez can’t stop Chavez, I’d think he could hang in the pocket all night to outclass him by a wide points victory, but they gots to prove it in the ring, so here we go again:
Who ya got, the highly skilled favorite Sergio Martinez, or the new kid on the block, Julio Cesar Chavez Jr?