By Blake "Racehorse" Chavez
Canelo Alvarez and Golden Boy Promotions are making a huge mistake in taking on Julio Caesar Chavez Jr. in a few days. Why?
I’m going to present the narrative that many boxing "experts" will also adopt once the promotional tour starts and they get to see the two fighters standing next to each other.
Canelo is a little fella, as in, he’s short. He’s only 5 feet 7 and-a-half inches tall. Too short to be trying to chew on a six foot-one inch tall giant. But to eliminate the crybabies that will insist Canelo is 5’ 8", let’s call him that. 5’ 8"
Everyone agrees Julio is easily over 6 feet. Let’s call it 6’ 1". That’s a full five-inch height advantage for Chavez. History and common sense shows it’s too much for Canelo to overcome. Pay close attention:
Outside of The PacMan at 5 feet 5 and Roberto Duran at 5 feet 7, one would be hard pressed to find a fighter at the championship level that has overcome such a hurdle. PacMan is as rare as Henry Armstrong, and Roberto was the best lightweight in history.
Canelo is not even close to the talent those two were in their prime. So what we’re really looking at is --all things being equal as far as both make weight the morning of the official weigh-in; Canelo should be the underdog.
Another major problem is that Canelo has "heavy" feet. He’s not considered nimble, but in a couple of fights he tried to be. In his Mayweather and Lara fights he thought he was a ’"fast" guy, but both guys boxed circles around him.
An ancient Cotto danced all night on Canelo. Chavez is a plodder, but it allows him valuable rest between exchanges. But let’s focus on the height disparity, no need to even talk reach, as the height issue alone should slam the door shut on Canelo.
Let’s say that the fighters I’m going to list were facing "world class" talented opponents, however, those proposed opponents were five full inches shorter than them. Would anybody take a bet against the taller fighter? So why is everyone choosing Canelo to win?
Ok. How do you think Miguel Cotto and Vasyl Lomachenko, at 5 feet 7, would do against any five inches shorter. Smash them, right?
Picture 5 feet 5 inch tall fighters Abner Mares and Gary Russell Jr., fighting a guy one inch over 4 feet 11. Those midget opponents would get blasted.
5 feet 10 inch "Triple G" against a short fighter? Do we even have to ask? "Big Drama trauma".
Can you see anybody betting against Manny Paquiao in the ring with an opponent standing only 5 feet tall?! The fans would be rolling in the aisles laughing their asses off.
I mention PacMan because someone is sure to point out that De La Hoya had a five-inch height advantage over PacMan, and Oscar got pummeled. I get that.
But I also get that PacMan is a once-in-a-lifetime fighter, and that Oscar was borderline retarded hitting the scales at 145. He didn’t gain much after the weigh-in and he looked weaker than a newborn kitten. PacMan also humbled a huge Antonio Margarito as well as Cotto and Clottey. Despite being undersized, PacMan destroyed every natural welterweight thrown at him. (It’s ironic that Bradley, Marquez, and Mayweather were actually blown-up welters that all beat PacMan)
So there is an exception to most any rule, and I believe PacMan and Duran are the exceptions to this one. But think about that. There have only been two champions in history that could face, and overcome the height disadvantage that Canelo is facing. Two legends. Yet Canelo is favored? That is insane. And Canelo is also jumping up two weight classes!
Now add this to the stew; Canelo is moving up to challenge a huge super-middleweight. A former middleweight world champion. A monster known for his size, power, and chin.
Junior middleweights never challenge super-middleweights at the elite levels. Ever. Why not? Because big super-middleweights walk around in the neighborhood of 190 lbs. That’s why. So the skinny is this: a monstrous super-middle can seriously hurt a junior middleweight, but the jr. middleweight can rarely hurt the massive super-middleweight.
Julio will be training to deliver deadly body shots; Canelo will try to match him to the body. It aint gonna happen. Canelo will soon become a believer and try staying away and unleashing blistering combinations when Chavez closes the distance. Canelo is the best combination puncher in the game now that Marquez has retired. But Chavez has the whiskers to smile through Canelo’s power shots.
Chavez will get lumped up as Canelo is very accurate, but once Junior verifies that Canelo cannot KO him, the party is pretty much over for Canelo. Chavez will have no respect and just mob him and bull-rush as Canelo stops holding his own ground and just tries to survive with movement. Fatigue will set in on Canelo and a swollen-eyed Junior will then corner Canelo once and for all, and close the show. The fans, and Canelo will know what’s coming when they see Canelo land heavy shots and Junior just brushes them off.
So even though Team Canelo is trying to shrink the monster to 164.5 lbs., the fact of the matter is that the gargantuan Chavez Jr. will swallow 3 or 4 whoppers, a couple of home-made chile verde burritos and a gallon of Gatorade immediately (virtually seconds after exiting the scale) and be at 170 pounds before he makes a bee-line to the buffet table for a massive breakfast of multiple T-Bone steaks, eggs, potatoes, frijoles, tortillas, and a pitcher of orange juice.
Junior does not care about anything but making the weight. If he hits the weight, he’s got 20 million dollars in the bank. His $7 million-dollar guarantee and a 20-30% cut of the PPV pie. The PPV will surprise folks as it might hit 1.5 million buys. If it goes through the roof, and it might, add another 500,000 viewers and Junior is set.
So all he cares about is making weight. After that, the money is in the bank as far as he is concerned. Rich beyond his and his father’s dreams.
After the face-off, Chavez Jr. will then go to his suite, burp several times, and lay on the sofa. Memo will hand him a banana and an apple, and a giant, ice-cold Smart Water. Junior will laugh, throw the fruit at Memo, snap his fingers, and receive a big bowl of Cheerios from one of his lackeys. He’ll eat the entire box. Julio Jr. will weigh 175-176 after his Cheerios. He’ll start to feel full, and grow sleepy. So off to bed with his woman, the alarm set for noon; Jr. will not miss lunch.
The alarm bell will ring and Julio will wake and stretch. Memo will hand him a Gatorade that Jr. will guzzle dead in one pull. Down the elevator to the finest Italian joint in Vegas. Memo will "insist’ Junior get his carbs in with the time-worn fighter’s tradition of a big pasta meal. Junior will consume a couple of mountains of spaghetti and meatballs that only he and Tony Soprano could kill. He’ll walk the mall, hoping to make more room for the dinner feast he’ll already have planned. He likely stop and get a double-decker ice cream cone, which will bring him back to his suite at 182 lbs. He’ll doze off watching cartoons and dreaming of supper.
Dinner will find Julio draining the second Gatorade Memo has had him drink on the ride over to an Old School Mexican restaurant that serves the most authentic Mexican food in Las Vegas according to Julio Sr., who will have attached himself to Team Chavez like an Alabama tick; no shaking him off this gravy train.
Junior will put on the feedbag and dig in, heaping plates of delicious carne asada, rice, beans, and pico de gallo. Corn and flour tortillas will fly around the table like military drones. Junior will sample a half-dozen tamales and fistfuls of deep-fried taquitos dipped in guacamole. A second and third helping of the carne asada is just a prelude to three or four chile rellenos. Junior will have been lusting for these humungous meals since training camp began. A pile of fried ice cream and another two cokes and he’ll be good to go; a solid 190 lbs.
Fight Day: Junior will guzzle two or three glasses of OJ, then stretch with Memo supervising.
He’ll bombard the hotel bathroom, dropping 4-5 lbs at a single sitting. Along with the two pounds he’ll have lost naturally overnight, he’ll be hovering at about 185-186. A big hearty breakfast of steak, bacon and huevos rancheros washed down by a half-gallon of milk will bring him back to 190.
Another mall walk and perhaps a quick gym visit to "shake-out’. At the suite, it’s a Gatorade and a nap. Lunchtime and room service brings up a tray loaded with carbs, pasta, potatoes, and starch-rich breads--no meats.
This is the extent of Memo’s control of the post weigh-in menu. Memo will urge Jr. to wash the meal down with bottled water or Gatorade, but Junior will ignore him and swill two or three cans of Dr. Pepper. Junior would then be at 192-193.
Another bombing run and Junior will settle in at his ring weight of 190 lbs. Junior will be too wound up to even eat supper. He’ll listen to Memo and suck on watermelon and canteloupe. After that, he’ll sip SmartWater till fight time.
Team Canelo will have Canelo doing everything by the book. Canelo needs to be as quick as he possibly can be on fight night or he’ll get forced into exchanges with the bigger man, who is the bigger puncher.
Canelo should weigh-in at about 162 and enter the ring at 173-175. Chavez will have a ten to fifteen-pound weight advantage any way you slice it. It’s just too much. You’ll see.
MY QUICK TAKE: Lara beating Yuri, then demanding GGG or Canelo. Listen; you had Canelo already and you chose to run like a thief. Your style and Rigo’s are death for the sport. Period. 33 years old; the running stops soon and the fighting starts: and you getting knocked out becomes the norm.
Adrian Broner is as dumb about money as PacMan. Broner, nobody is going to pay you 3 or 4 million to fight Ricky "Has-Been" Burns. You should have taken the 4 million and fought PacMan. It was a no-lose bout. No shame in losing to Pac and the exposure positions you right. The upside; you beat the slowing down 38-year-old and you become elite A-side and call some shots. Al Haymon and Mayweather must not really like you much, Broner.
Yet there you sit on the dais next to Floyd, and he’s got all the money, you’re broke, and almost 30 yrs. old now. Who is fooling who? They chumped you, Bro. Put you in early with big strong monsters like Maidana and Porter? You were still growing into those weights and they gave you the biggest guys in those divisions. Sucker work.
Now they got you believing Arum is going to crawl back to you with a giant offer. Don’t hold your breath. Talk to B-Hop. You add wear and tear off every fight. Be smart.
Blake "Racehorse" Chavez answers all his emails