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Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. to fight on Jan.26

Julio Cesar Chavez Jr.

By Dan Ambrose: Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. will be fighting in the next 2 months against an opponent still to be determined on January 26 in Los Angeles, California. Chavez Jr. (50-3-1, 32 KOs) has 2 potential candidates for his January 26 fight. Chavez Jr’s adviser Al Haymon will give him the confirmation soon about the opponent, according to ESPN Desportes.

It’s still unknown if Chavez Jr. will be back with his trainer Nacho Beristain for his January 26 fight. Beristain recently took to the news media in saying that he hadn’t been contacted by Chavez Jr., and he wasn’t sure what was going on with him.

Chavez Jr. was supposed to be fighting in December, but that date has been pushed to January. His weight is going to need to be better for his January 26 fight than it was for his last match-up against Saul Canelo Alvarez if he wants to win. Chavez Jr. is not a good enough fighter to steamroll super middleweight contenders if he’s weight drained. Thus far, Chavez Jr. hasn’t shown that he has the talent to be a major player in the 168 lb. division.

Chavez Jr. moved up in weight to super middleweight 4 years ago in 2013, and he’s only made weight for the division a handful of times. He’s never looked good at this weight in any of his fights. The last time Chavez Jr. impressed was in his win over Andy Lee in 2012, and that was at middleweight. It’s too late in the game for Chavez Jr. to go back down to 160, but that was clearly his best weight class. If Chavez Jr. could make middleweight, he’d have a better chance of excelling with the remainder of his boxing career.

The 32-year-old Chavez Jr. plans on having a better training camp to make weight for the fight in a better fashion than in his last fight with Golden Boy star Saul “Canelo” Alvarez on May 6 of this year. Chavez Jr. looked weight drained for the fight after making the 164 ½ pound catch-weight the day before the fight. It’s clear that Chavez Jr. took too much weight off during training camp, and it left him drained and too weak to put up much of a fight for the highly popular Canelo. The Canelo vs. Chavez Jr. fight was hyped for weeks by Golden Boy, and it was televised on HBO pay-per-view.

Not surprisingly, a lot of boxing fans were angry afterwards about the lack of action in the contest. Golden Boy said Canelo vs. Chavez Jr. would be an exciting action-packed fight. Instead, it was 12 rounds of Canelo hitting a very drained looking Chavez Jr. at will with shots. It was disturbing to watch. Canelo even appeared to take it easy on Chavez Jr. by going to the ropes and covering up to see if it could draw him out, and make him throw punches. It didn’t work. Chavez Jr. stood in front of Canelo, throwing very few shots in those instances.

“All they did after the Canelo fight was to blame me, this time I want a good camp, as we did with,” said Chavez Jr. to ESON Deportes. ”Freddie Roach and Alex Ariza, I’m not going back with them, but I want to do something like that with Nacho. Just a few people, not a festival , maybe the pressure was too much for many and in the end it did not turn out as we wanted. I hope to show that now in my weight things will be better, not just different,” said Chavez Jr.

It’ll be interesting to find out who Chavez Jr. will be fighting on January 26. His adviser Al Haymon will need to select wisely the opponent, as if it’s someone too good, he could lose. As weak as Chavez Jr. looked in his last fight with Canelo, he’d lose to even 2nd and 3rd fighters. Chavez Jr. can’t win fights if he’s weak from making weight. That brings up another issue. Can Chavez Jr. still make weight and be strong at super middleweight? He’s never looked strong at the weight since he moved up to 168 in 2013. It’s possible that Chavez Jr. might be better suited to fighting at 175 at this point.

The one problem with Chavez Jr. fighting at light heavyweight is he doesn’t have the power to compete with the top guys in that division. When Chavez Jr. did face light heavyweight Andrzej Fonfara at light heavyweight in April 2015, he was completely over-matched and stopped in the 9th round. Fonfara is not a major player at 175. The fact that Chavez Jr. was out of his element against a guy like Fonfara, it suggests that he doesn’t have the talent or the chin to make it at 175. I don’t know if Chavez Jr. has the talent to make it at super middleweight either. That’s the problem.

Chavez Jr. and his management made a mistake in agreeing to fight Canelo at a catch-weight of 164 ½ pounds last May. That was a bad career move for Chavez Jr. It wasn’t a bad thing that Chavez Jr. fought Canelo. What was bad is Chavez Jr. took the fight without enough time to trim off the weight properly. Chavez Jr. also made a mistake of agreeing to the catch-weight. If anything, Chavez Jr. should have negotiated the fight for a catch-weight of 171 pounds. He also needed more time to come down from the rumored 235 pounds that he was said to have started his training camp at. Losing that much weight to get down to 164.5 lbs. for the catch-weight, it was insane.

Chavez Jr. never had a chance in that fight. The fight was lost in training camp with Chavez Jr. having to drop massive amounts of weight in just 8 weeks. If Chavez Jr. had 8 or 9 months to lose the weight properly by slowing taking it off, he would have stood a better chance against Canelo. I still think Chavez Jr. would have been better off to fight Canelo at 171, even with more time to train. Chavez Jr. is clearly a small light heavyweight, and not a super middleweight at this point in his career. The sooner Chavez Jr. realizes the better off he’ll be.

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