Margarito: I’m fighting Chavez Jr. in September
By Jason Kim: Former IBF/WBO welterweight champion Antonio Margarito (38-8, 27 KO’s) says he’ll be fighting WBC middleweight champion Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. (45-0-1, 31 KO’s) in September after he takes a tune-up bout in May or June of this year.
Margarito told the LA Times “Ive been told I could fight on May 26 here in Tucson, but it it’s in June, that’s fine because it’s in September that’s when we’re going to fight [Chavez Jr.]”
It’s pretty clear why Margarito would be considered the ideal opponent for Chavez Jr. Margarito is slow, much smaller than Chavez Jr., and is really not much of any threat in derailing the Chavez Jr. money machine. Besides that, Margarito is a popular fighter and brings in a lot of Mexican fans. A Chavez-Margarito fight would do really well and would likely bring in high ratings for HBO and also sell a lot of tickets if it were held in Texas.
You have to think that the 34-year-old Margarito wouldn’t be saying this unless he was told this by his promoter Bob Arum, who happens to be the same promoter for Chavez Jr. This is a fight that’s been kicked around for a while and it was assumed that Arum would make this fight if the WBC allows him to let Chavez Jr. defend against Margarito. However, Jose Sulaiman, the president of the World Boxing Council, has already said that Margarito wouldn’t be a suitable opponent for Chavez Jr. because he’s not ranked in the top 15 by the WBC. However, that obviously is something that can be worked out, as Manny Pacquiao wasn’t ranked by the WBC in the top 15 in the junior middleweight division when he fought Margarito for the vacant WBC 154 pound title in November of 2010. If Sulaiman let Pacquiao fight for the WBC junior middleweight title, he’ll likely look the other way and let Margarito fight WBC middleweight champion Chavez Jr. for his title in September.
Margarito is a poor choice for Chavez Jr. for a number of reasons. First of all, he’s lost three out of his last four fights and looked horrible in all three fights. He last fought in December, getting stopped by WBA junior middleweight champion Miguel Cotto in a 10th round stoppage. Margarito has never fought at middleweight and would be lucky if he could scale 160 pounds of the fight. While that wouldn’t be a problem against a lot of middleweights, it would be against Chavez Jr., who has been coming into his fights weighing 180 pounds recently after rehydrating. Chavez Jr. would have a huge size advantage over Margarito in this fight and that alone would probably be more than enough to win.