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Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. must look at himself for career stall, not Top Rank or Bob Arum

Credit: Chris Farina - Top Rank

Chavez Tries to Blame Top Rank For Career Stall. Who Is He Kidding?

Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr. recently got himself back in the boxing press, but not in the way a fighter, especially a Mexican fighter, should. Instead of getting ink with his fists, Chavez did it by blaming his (allegedly former) promoter, Bob Arum’s Top Rank, for stalling his career.

While I’m not surprised the spoiled, pampered Chavez, utterly unlike his legendary father in every way except punching power, is blaming someone else for his woes, I do have to ask just who he thinks he is fooling. Does JCC, Jr. think everyone has simply forgotten his record?

Boxing’s Silver Spooned Crybaby

Credit: Chris Farina - Top Rank
Credit: Chris Farina – Top Rank

Although boxing today is full of family connections, it is Chavez who entered the sport as its modern aristocrat, filled with a sense of entitlement and with the connections to deliver on it. Thanks to the cozy relationship between his father and the Suleiman clan that dominates the WBC, Chavez got a two-handed boost into the WBC middleweight title, which was effectively taken from then-middleweight kingpin Sergio Martinez and given to Chavez in 2011.

Chavez then enjoyed a year and a half to strut his stuff while wearing the green strap, a strap he hadn’t earned, and earn good paydays before he was finally matched with Martinez. Yet receiving that helping hand into a world title, the kind of thing most fighters would trade their right testicle for, apparently didn’t impress Chavez, or so it would seem because he couldn’t be bothered to train properly.

JCC, Jr. soon garnered a reputation for ballooning in weight between fights, and then for having trouble making weight for fights. Word also got around that Chavez was just as lazy in training camp as he was out of it. All of this came to a head when Chavez finally met a fighter who couldn’t simply be bludgeoned into submission, and Sergio Martinez made him pay for it.

When Chavez met Maravilla, the Argentine made him look slow and listless for 11 straight rounds. The Mexican was headed for a straight shut-out when he finally stepped in and did something in Round 12, and what happened when he connected with Martinez makes one wonder what might have happened had he been busier both in the gym and in the ring, and thereby created the opportunity to land that haymaker earlier in the fight.

To crown it all, JCC, Jr. couldn’t be bothered to postpone his weed smoking until after no one was screening him for it, as they did in the Sergio Martinez fight. That positive drug test cost Chavez, Jr. a lengthy suspension and a hefty fine.

Blame Arum? Really?

Credit: Chris Farina - Top Rank
Credit: Chris Farina – Top Rank

Trainer Freddie Roach’s response to all the talk in the wake of the Martinez loss of Chavez, Jr. being a lazy fighter was as interesting as it was revealing. On the one hand, he insisted Chavez had worked hard in training camp. That is just what one would expect a good trainer to say about his fighter. On the other hand, Roach insisted that if Chavez didn’t give him his all in the future, Roach would walk out the door. Why make the latter statement at all if Chavez were such a good worker?

Furthermore, it’s hard to see what Top Rank did to Chavez other than deliver a succession of overpaid, televised fights against the likes of Peter Manfredo, Jr. and Marco Antonio Rubio. It’s hardly Bob Arum’s fault that Chavez lost a year in the drugs suspension and then needed comeback rehabilitation (two fights with Brian Vera, one of which he only controversially won, and the upcoming fight with Andrezj Fonfara, his voyage with Al Haymon beginning). Nor is it Arum’s fault that Chavez’s only hope for a big payday in the near future is to be served up as a fat joint, pun intended, of roast pork for Carl Froch.

He’ll likely continue taking the easy road, until he learns the hard way. His last name, and connection with Haymon, will continue to enable him to feed on soft touches. But amongst other potential opponents, he must realize The Cobra is lurking.

At the end of the day, Chavez was the one who chose not to be a disciplined athlete, and eventually ruined the golden opportunities his family connections gave him. If he wants to know who to blame for his career’s stumbles and failures, he need only go to the bathroom and take a long, hard look in the mirror.