Chavez Jr can’t take Sergio Martinez’s left hands all night without falling apart
By Dan Ambrose: You have to hope for the sake of WBC middleweight champion Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. (46-0-1, 32 KO’s) that his trainer Freddie Roach is teaching him a crash course in how to defend himself from getting hit with the big left hand bombs that Sergio Martinez (49-2-2, 28 KO’s) is going to be throwing at him for as long as this fight lasts for their PPV bout on September 15th on HBO.
Roach isn’t known for being a good defensive trainer, and Chavez Jr. has looked just as hittable as he was when he first started training with Roach in 2009.
I have no doubts that Chavez Jr. can handle getting hit with an occasional big bomb from Martinez. But where I think Chavez Jr. is going to have problems is when he starts getting with 20 to 30 huge left hand shots from Martinez in every round. That’s where things are going to get troublesome for Chavez Jr. His defense is basically nonexistent with his head being like a glove.
I don’t mean that Chavez Jr. head-butts his opponents, I mean that he blocks shots with his head instead of his gloves. Chavez Jr. has been able to get away with this against the mostly light punchers that his promoter Bob Arum has pitted him against up until now, but I don’t know whether he’ll be able to do that against someone with the kind of power that Martinez has going for him.
The accumulation of Martinez’s power shots on Chavez Jr’s head is going to be a problem. Eating some of those shots will be doable for the 26-year-old Chavez Jr. but if Martinez is able to unload at will on Chavez Jr, Roach might be picking Chavez Jr. up off the canvas by the 5th or 6th and taking him out of the ring.
Instead of blocking punches, Chavez Jr. likes to lower his head so that the shots catch him on the top of his head instead of his face. For some reason, Chavez Jr. is able to take big shots in that area without getting hurt. He doesn’t get hit with uppercuts because few of his opponents had that weapon in their toolkit. Martinez has a good uppercut and I imagine he’ll have noticed how Chavez Jr. likes to lower his head when he’s plodding forward.
If Chavez Jr. gasses out late in the fight like he tends to around the 10th round, he’s going to be really at Martinez’s mercy. If Chavez Jr. is still standing by that point in the fight, he’s going to take some terrible punishment and Roach may need to step in and save him if he wants to avoid having Chavez Jr. get seriously hurt.
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