CHAVEZ JR. IS REAL
JULIO CESAR CHAVEZ JR. pummels ANDY LEE
in their Saturday night contest.
Second Generation Champ Verges on Ring Greatness
By RON MILLER
For years I've been waiting for the moment when the Mexican prizefighter Julio Cesar Chavez Jr., son of Mexico's all-time greatest boxing hero, finally would be forced to face a really tough ring opponent and his enormous bubble would be burst by somebody's flying fists.
Well, it ain't gonna happen. His bubble is solid. His campaign of 46 victories, no defeats and only a single draw to mar his perfect record seems quite safe. His 32 knockout victories isn't a sign of false power inflation. No, I'm happy to say that Julio Cesar Chavez, at 26, is 100 per cent real. He is the phenomenon he's supposed to be.
I guess I've known that for a little time, though I hated to admit it. He has been fighting legitimate fighters for several years now. I was fooled into thinking he was a fraud because he was brought along so slowly, fed a series of rdinary opponents at first, making me think his kayo record was all bloat.
On Saturday, June 16, at El Paso, Texas, Chavez demonstrated why he may be on his way to being the next big thing in the boxing world. He faced a really tough, hard-hitting opponent named Andy Lee, who went after Chavez with real determination and tossed some heavy duty leather at the 16-year-old Mexican kid.
Like his dad before him, Junior aptly showed how to literall;y tear a guy apart with body blows. With devastating hooks to the body, Chavez relentlessly went after Lee, softening him up until he could start punching Lee's chin at will. Meanwhile, Lee was landing perfecty timed shot to th Mexican's head, some of them flush on the chin. Lee can punch. But Chavez took his best stuff and came roaring back with his own.
By the middle of round seven, Lee was starting to fold over and Chavez increased the pressure, firing lefts and rights with seriously murderour intent. The referee wisely stepped in and called a halt. Chavez retained his world middleweight title by TKO in round seven.
Chavez Jr. is solid in all departments. He's tough and hardy, can punch hard with both hands, boxes very intelligently and, best of all, has grit up to his eyebrows. He will give anyone in the world a rough time.
Right now it appears as if Chavez Jr. is already booked for what could be the fight of the year: A showdown with the universally accepted best middleweight in the world, Argentina's Sergio Martinez. This is shaping up as a dream fight--two knockout sensations with heart aplenty, evenly matched for unification of the world middleweight championships.
The original Julio Cesar Chavez was there at ringside, watching his son struggle to greatness against a well-managed, well-trained and courageous foe. It must have been a wonderous moment for Julio Sr. But for Junior, it was his chance to finally rise from the shadow of his famous dad and shut the mouths of nay-sayers like me.
I couldn't be happier to have been wrong about a fighter. Junior, make a place for me. I'm on your team from here on out.
As for that other recent showdown fight, the controverssial split decision win by Timothy Bradley over Manny Pacquiao for the welterweight crown, it doesn't look as if Nevada is going to take any action to reverse the decision that has been almost universlaly derided as a robbery of the first degree. That's too bad. I join the ranks of the boo-birds who thought it was a stinker decisioni. I scored the fight 117-113 for Pacquiao, a comfortable margin for victory that I even felt may have been a bit generous to Bradley. Manny, a gentleman if not a gentle man, has not complained. A rematch is set for Nov. 10, but I'd rather Manny would let Bradly keep his undeserved title and concentrate instead on taunting Floyd Mayweather Jr. into finally meeting him in the ring as soon as Floyd gets out of jail from his domestic violence conviction. That's the fight everybody wants to see before it's too late.
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