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Sergio Martinez Gives Julio Cesar Chavez Jr a Boxing Lesson in a Dominating Unanimous Decision Win.
They had been jawing back and forth for months at various press conferences. The exchange of words and insults continued on HBO's "Face Off" with Max Kellerman. The animosity between them was displayed even more on HBO's "24/7" program. The tension building up towards the fight could easily be cut with a knife. On Saturday September 15, 2012 on HBO Pay-Per-View, they finally settled their differences in the boxing ring. Sergio "Maravilla" Martinez, and Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. finally squared off in one of boxing's most highly anticipated fights of 2012. The fight took place at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. Here is my review on how the fight went down.
Sergio Martinez (50-2-2) came into the fight ranked as the number 4 pound for pound fighter in the world by Ring Magazine. Martinez's previous two opponents before his bout with Chavez were Darren Barker, and Matthew Macklin. Both fights ended with Martinez stopping both fighters before either bout went the distance. Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. came into the bout against Martinez with an undefeated record of 46 wins, 0 losses, 1 draw, and 1 no contest. Chavez Jr's latest fight took place back in June of 2012. His opponent was southpaw fighter Andy Lee, who Chavez Jr. would defeat by TKO in the 7th round. Although Chavez Jr had a perfect record before entering his fight with Martinez, many fans and analyst felt that Chavez has been protected throughout his still young career. Basically, many people feel that Chavez Jr. has been riding off of the name of his legendary father Julio Cesar Chavez Sr.
During the fight, Martinez was able to use his great foot movement and speed to get off combinations on Chavez Jr. Chavez Jr, who is known for being a flat footed fighter, appeared to be slow in reacting to Martinez's fast style. Chavez Jr. landed a higher percentage of punches than Martinez during the fight. However, the elusive Martinez was seldom in front of Chavez to be hit cleanly. Because Martinez was moving so much, it limited Chavez Jr's activity in the ring. There were several times throughout the fight where Chavez Jr was able to pin Martinez against the ropes and connect with powerful shots. However, Martinez used his ring intelligence to maneuver out of the tough spots. Both fighters displayed great chins, as they both appeared to be able to take each other's punches.
Martinez was clearly in control of the fight heading into the final round. However, things took an interesting turn in the 12th and final round. Chavez Jr was able to catch Martinez with a devastating shot that sent Martinez to the canvas halfway through the round. A briefly dazed Martinez rose to his feet, and began to slug it out with Chavez Jr with over a minute left in the fight. Martinez chose not to clinch or hold, and appeared to be on the verge of being stopped. However, he displayed a tremendous fighting spirit to survive the fight and claim the victory. The judges final scorecards read: 117-110, 118-109, and 118-109; all for Martinez.
With his dominating performance over Julio Cesar Chavez Jr, Martinez retained his Ring Magazine middleweight belt, and claimed the WBC middleweight title from Chavez Jr. Martinez's victory in dominating fashion has solidified him by many as one of the current top level fighters in the sport of boxing. Although Chavez Jr lost the bout, he impressed many fan with his chin and iron will to keep fighting. Although he now has a blemish on his record, he is still a young fighter that can have a great future in boxing if he works towards it. Both fighters mentioned a possibility of a rematch following the fight, so that could be a possibility sometime next year.