With new trainer Robert Garcia of Oxnard in tow, Chavez will fight Marcos Reyes on Saturday night in a 10-round super middleweight bout at the Don Haskins Center in El Paso, Texas. He’s cruised for years on the power of his name.
Though he’s an eight-year professional with 33 victories and 24 knockouts on his resume – alongside only two losses – the expectation is that Reyes will be in El Paso on Saturday night to give a returning Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. a spirited workout, but not necessarily push him to the brink of losing.
As for their strategy against Reyes, Garcia said that he just corrected small things and minor mistakes in head movement because he did not see any need for a major overhaul, saying that Chavez is very skilled and has a good fighting style.
He had been warned by many prior to the camp about both Chavez, Jr.’s work ethic and the interfering presence of Chavez, Sr., but neither premonition came to pass. The Mexican legend has stopped by the gym just three times and, each time, has been “more about carrying his granddaughter and taking [her] out to the horses”.
Chavez was badly outfought on the inside against Fonfara, who repeatedly tagged Chavez with compact hooks (the left, especially) and uppercuts. But from the beginning, Chavez had favorable matchmaking and always seemed to get the benefit of the doubt from the judges and referees. By contrast, 13 months passed between the Fonfara bout and his second win over Vera in March 2014.
Chavez lost by technical knockout after the ninth round to light heavyweight contender Andrzej Fonfara of Poland. At no point was Chavez ever able to pin Fonfara against the ropes and rip him with his vaunted body attack.
Chavez took the Fonfara fight at a catchweight of 172 pounds.
Garcia has a deep stable of fighters, but he said he didn’t have any problems fitting Chavez into his schedule since Chavez likes to train in the evening. “I missed that the last fight”. When he fought at middleweight and claimed the WBC title, Chavez did beat several credible opponents, including Andy Lee, Sebastian Zbik, Peter Manfredo Jr. and Marco Antonio Rubio. I feel this is the best part of my career, and on [Saturday], I’m going to win. I think that those were the factors. “I know I’m a better fighter than him”.
He speaks as if he’s been forced to fight bigger men outside of his weight class. That, of course, is nonsense. “There’s nobody in boxing who can beat me when I fight at my weight”.
To suggest otherwise is to be hopelessly naïve.
Chavez (48-2-1, 32 KOs) suffered his first loss of his pro career in September 2012 at the hands of former Oxnard resident Sergio Martinez.
He won a version of the middleweight title, no easy feat even in this day of multiple belts, and beat a quality opponent, Andy Lee, in order to do it.
This, however, is not entirely fair to Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. He was then busted for marijuana usage after the bout, in which he did next to nothing for 11-plus rounds. More importantly, that’s when he quit on his stool, betraying his trainer, his fans, his famous father and, most importantly, himself.
“It is not what I thought it would be”, Garcia said on working with Chavez. Instead, Chavez feels put upon.
With Garcia in his corner, Perez struggled early on with Sanchez, who took the fight on less than two weeks’ notice when Sharif Bogere had to withdraw after suffering an undisclosed injury during training.