A Tale of Two Fighters
By John Novoselac, Doghouse Boxing (June 1, 2011) Doghouse Boxing (Photo © Chris Farina / Top Rank)
Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr & Sebastian Zbik
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,
John at: jnovoselac@yahoo.com

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