How much longer can Chavez Jr. make the 160 pound division?
By Dan Ambrose: HBO analyst Larry Merchant asked WBC middleweight champion Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. if he was considering moving up in weight last Saturday due to Chavez Jr’s struggles to make the 160 pound middleweight limit for his fight against Marco Antonio Rubio.
Chavez Jr. said he was fine with the weight class and would continue to fight at 160 in the future. However, if you look at the amount of weight that Chavez Jr. putting on after he rehydrates, it just doesn’t seem feasible that he can continue to make the middleweight division weight limit for too much longer.
I’ve personally never heard of a fighter consistently putting over 20 pounds after a weigh-in. Chavez Jr. puts on massive amounts of weight after making the 160 pound limit the days before his fights and I don’t know he does it. Most fighters would be completely drained doing what Chavez Jr. is doing but he takes off the water weight and puts it back on without any problems thus far.
In his last three fights Chavez Jr. has rehydrated to the following weights: 185, 179 and 181. That’s not middleweight, that’s a cruiserweight. I just don’t know Chavez Jr. does it. I’ve heard of fighters in extreme cases putting on 17 pounds, but rarely do I hear about fighters that put on over 20.
I think Kelly Pavlik put on over 20 pounds after his weigh-in for his fight against Sergio Martinez. But he was sluggish and wore down in the second half of the fight. After that fight, Pavlik decided to move up in weight to 168. But Chavez Jr. is staying at middleweight and doing this every time.
Sooner or later, I think it’s got to catch up to him to where he’ll lose his strap on the scales. He obviously is fighting it tooth and nail because his chances of winning a world title at 168 are almost nonexistent due to the quality of opposition at that weight.
Chavez Jr’s size advantage wouldn’t be as huge and the fighters are so much better at that weight class compared to middleweight. Chavez Jr. would likely have to settle for winning a lesser belt like one of the WBC’s created Silver titles or something. I guess Chavez’s fan base wouldn’t care and I can see HBO still religiously showing Chavez’s fights even if he’s got a lesser title.
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