Canelo Alvarez: Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. is 'no role model,' compares him to a child
Trash talk continues to heat up ahead of their pay-per-view showdown on May 6
For any boxer with matinee idol looks and a large following outside the ring, being forced to overcome stigmas that you are more pretty boy than true warrior are inevitable.
Hall of Famer and six-division titleholder Oscar De La Hoya certainly was forced to overcome them, particularly from the hardcore Mexican fanbase that was slow to embrace him. The same can be said for Canelo Alvarez, the fighter De La Hoya promotes.
Alvarez (48-1-1, 34 KOs), boxing's biggest star, will fight for Mexican pride in his May 6 showdown against Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. The pay-per-view fight from Las Vegas will be contested at a catchweight of 164.5 pounds.
But when it comes to the idea that Alvarez will struggle to gain cheers opposite Chavez, the son of the Mexican legend with the same name, because Alvarez is still perceived soft by his native fans, the former middleweight titlist isn't willing to agree.
"Look, my fans are there. My fans know that I started from nothing, from the bottom up, from zero, and have worked my way up with a lot of sweat and sacrifices," Alvarez said, during last week's media teleconference.
"[Chavez] has his fans, as well. But I think a lot of his fans are more his father's fans than his, and his fans follow his father, what his father says. [Chavez] has shown a lot of ups and downs in his career, and he himself has not had a real disciplined career. He is not a role model for the young children and the young fighters."
Chavez (50-2-1, 32 KOs), a former middleweight champion who has competed as high as light heavyweight in recent years, has seen his once promising career fall off the tracks. The 31-year-old has routinely missed weight and twice failed drug tests while enduring criticism for not taking the sport seriously.
When asked about Chavez's 2015 loss to Andrzej Fonfara, in which Chavez quit on his stool after nine rounds of their 172-pound catchweight bout, Alvarez said he believed a repeat of history was possible.
"Everything's possible in boxing and as the great Bernard Hopkins once said, 'Once a quitter, always a quitter,'" Alvarez said. "So anything's possible."
Speaking to BoxingScene.com on Tuesday, Chavez countered that Alvarez is merely jealous.
"I think he's jealous because I'm Julio Cesar Chavez's son, but I'm guilty of having been born at the top, I did not ask to be the son of Julio Cesar Chavez," Chavez Jr. said.
While a fight between Alvarez and Chavez has been talked about for many years, it didn't appear to be possible over the last few, especially with Chavez having trouble making weight. Alvarez, who turned pro at age 15 in 2005, said their rivalry goes back 10 years to Guadalajara.
"They had the opportunity to make this fight years ago. They had the power to make this fight back then. They didn't want to," Alvarez said. "As a person, you know, I don't know [Chavez] well but just from what I hear from his actions and all, it's like a guy that just doesn't sustain what he says. You know, he just says a lot of things. It's almost like he's a little kid."
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