I have been ranting about the treatment of Argentine phenom Sergio Martinez by the World Boxing Council (WBC). Martinez relinquished the WBC Middleweight World title back in 2010 without losing it in the ring. Four times he has been passed over for a bout with second generation Mexican star Julio Cesar Chavez Jr, despite being promised the ‘next bout’ with Chavez. Now, it appears as if the fight will finally happen, as it has been scheduled for Las Vegas, NV on September 15th.
Whatever happens in the fight, this is a step up for both fighters – for Chavez Jr, it is a step up in the quality of competition, as Martinez has been in most top 5 pound for pound lists for the past several years. As for Martinez, it is his first time fighting as a frontline PPV draw. Both fighters will be dealing with a lot of questions in the build up.
Chavez took out Andy Lee in the 7th round of his last bout, held on the 16th of June. Lee was game, but outclassed as Chavez won as expected.
Things will not be nearly as easy for him against Martinez. In his last outing the Argentinian was outpointing Mathew Macklin, but he hit the canvas in the 7th round from a trip that was ruled a knock down. From that point on, Martinez hit another level in the fight, dominating Macklin to the point that he did not answer the bell for the final round.
Martinez is going to have to use his lefty stance to come in and start winning rounds right away. If he sees the opportunity to take Chavez out he needs to take it and not mess around with leaving it in the judges hands. he also can’t have Chavez gain confidence as the fight goes on.
It will be an interesting line to set – for all intents based on talent and resume, Martinez should be the favorite in the fight, however Chavez comes with a following and is likely to receive a lot of support from the betting public.
But Martinez has been waiting and pushing for this fight for a long time, and now that it is here, he will take the opportunity to the bank. My money is on Martinez, underdog or not.