|A Tale of Two Fighters
By John Novoselac, Doghouse Boxing (June 1, 2011) Doghouse Boxing (Photo © Chris Farina / Top Rank)
This Saturday night at the Staples
Center in Los Angeles, two undefeated fighters will clash for the WBC
middleweight title. One will arrive after compiling an extensive
amateur and professional career relying on his respectable technical
skills. The other will be there by birthright. Universum promoted
German Sebastian Zbik (30-0, 10 KOs) will make his US debut and
defend his strap against Top Rank’s Son of the Legend, Julio Cesar
Chavez, Jr. (42-0-1, 30 KOs).
Zbik is trained by former lightweight
titlist Artur Grigorian. He had a successful amateur career, racking
up 129 wins of 152 fights, and a bronze medal in the 2002 European
Championships. After turning pro in 2004, Sebastian won an interim
version of the WBC middleweight title by defeating Italian Domenico
Spada. After his last fight, a decision win over Argentinean Jorge
Heiland, he earned the right to fight the true middleweight champion
in Sergio Martinez. Boxing politics prevented that fight from
happening, so now Zbik will have the opportunity to face his biggest
name opponent yet in Chavez.
Chavez has been very well promoted by
Top Rank. Having no amateur experience, he was brought along slowly,
debuting at 130 pounds. His skills have evolved as the fighter
filled out, growing into a true 160 pounder. His greatest skill,
however, is something that can’t be taught: his name. They are
indeed tough shoes to fill, perhaps impossible, but the newly
re-dedicated Chavez will attempt to win his first title in the same
city where his famous father did.
Zbik is the perfect fighter for this
situation. He is your classic European stylist with little power to
threaten you. While Chavez may have to work to find Zbik, he won’t
need to be concerned about the incoming attack. Zbik’s challenge
will lie in making it ugly enough for the judges to find a way to
score the fight in his favor, which has proved problematic for
foreign fighters in many locales. The winner of this fight is once
again in line to face the true middleweight champion, but I suspect
Sergio will once again find himself challenged in getting the
challenger in the ring.
Questions or comments,
e-mail John at: firstname.lastname@example.org
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