Photos Lina Baker
If you weren’t interested in seeing Canelo Alvarez face Julio Cesar Chavez Jr., your curious now after the two country press tour concluded in Los Angeles today.
A public bet for 100% of each fighters purse with a televised handshake to seal the deal got Twitter and social media buzzing about a fight that was largely lamented when early negotiations were rumored.
The clarion call of boxing fandom was sounded with disappointment when Goldenboy announced Canelo would not be facing GGG but Julio Cesar Chavez Jr.
Chavez Jr. Is coming off a victory over unheralded Dominick Britsch in December and looked significantly slimmer during the press tour than he has previously when not in camp. The victory was barely a blip on the radar and didn’t do much to erase the embarrassing knockout defeat by Adrzej Fonfara when Chavez Jr quit on his stool.
Sell the fight: Priority number one for Goldenboy promoter Oscar De La Hoya, and he brought crowds and pulled at the right emotional strings to garner interest in this all Mexican showdown.
Sell the rivalry: Any Mexican boxing fan could tell you a year ago that Chavez Jr didn’t like Canelo and vice versa. Julio Cesar Chavez Sr. was on hand to announce “the only reason Oscar beat me was because he got me when I was old!” sending the Los Angeles crowd into a frenzy and adding an extra dimension to the rivalry. Chavez would certainly like to get back a win over De La Hoya whom he lost to twice during a rivalry that separated Mexican fans and saw Oscar get booed in his hometown of Los Angeles during the build up decades ago.
Now they are set to collide on May 6th much to the chagrin of fans who were praying for Canelo to face Golovkin. There were disparaging signs hung and held at Plaza Mexico like a political protest indicating the underlying displeasure with the decision to face a seemingly undeserving Chavez Jr.
Chavez looked and sounded closer to the middleweight that destroyed Andy Lee and less like the Light Heavyweight who was destroyed by Fonfara. Adding trainer Nacho Beristain and his nonsense mentality to his team could prove to be a significant factor for Chavez.
Happy was the last thing I was when this fight was announced, Canelo is the biggest name in the sport and was giving Chavez a free meal ticket, and for what? He hadn’t beaten anyone of note, he hadn’t looked spectacular in a high profile loss. Chavez had done nothing.
The locations and the shimmer and shine of the press tour accomplished its mission. Chavez’s physical appearance has me interested, really interested. Maybe there is enough magic left in the Chavez lineage to pull off a great one to upset the biggest apple cart in all of boxing.