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Remembering a True Champion: Javier Jauregui

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By Bill Tibbs


Sadly, boxing lost one of its brothers last week when tough, talented former International Boxing Federation (IBF) lightweight champion Javier “El Chatito” Jaurgeui passed at the all-too-young age of 40. The Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico resident would record a 54-17-2 (37) record in an outstanding 73-bout career. Great counterpunching, a tight defense and a veteran skill set that only comes from time-on-task in the ring were the trademarks of this great fighter, who could have fought successfully in any era.
 
Javier turned pro in February of 1988 and by the end of 1992, had run up a respectable 23-5-1 record. From 1993-1996, he would fight 14 times, going 13-1. His only loss was to then-North American Boxing Federation (NABF) featherweight champion and future world champion Jesus Chavez. Also included in this run were two stoppage wins over future world champion Jose Luis Castillo. Jauregui also won and successfully defended the Mexican featherweight title seven times during this span. In his third bout of 1997 he would KO Javier Leon in 10 rounds to claim the World Boxing Council (WBC) Continental Americas super featherweight title. After going 3-1 through 1998-1999, Jauregui would receive a shot at the World Boxing Organization (WBO) super featherweight title. However, he was blasted out in one round by then-undefeated power-puncher Acelino Freitas in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

Six fights later in the fall of 2002, “El Chatito” beat undefeated Alex Trujillo over 12 rounds to claim the vacant WBA Fedelatin lightweight title. A year later, in his second bout of 2003, he knocked out Leavander Johnson in 11 rounds to claim the vacant IBF lightweight title. Jauregui would lose the title in his first defense against Julio Diaz via 12-round, majority decision in San Diego, California. Over the next three years, he would go 5-3 in eight bouts facing top contenders like Ricky Quiles and Joan Guzman. From the spring of 2008 until January of this year, he would fight sporadically, lacing up the gloves five times. While he would post a 2-3 mark in his final five fights he faced rugged competition including Almazbek “Kid Diamond” Raiymkulov, Ruslan Provodnikov and Anthony Peterson.
 
In retirement, he worked closely with former junior middleweight champion Saul “Canelo” Alvarez. Jauregui was one of the first world champions to sign with a then-up-and-coming promotional firm headed by Oscar De la Hoya, “Golden Boy Promotions.” In a recent interview, Golden Boy CEO Richard Schaefer said, “[Jauregui] was a great champion and I remember him as a nice and polite young man outside the ring.” Sadly, earlier this week, Javier suffered a stroke requiring emergency brain surgery from which he did not recover. A fan’s fighter, a fighter’s fighter - a real fighter. Gone but never forgotten.
 
Rest in Peace, champ!
 
Questions and comments can be sent to Bill Tibbs at hwtibbs@shaw.ca.
 
 

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