Daniel Jacobs vs. Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr.
live from Talking Stick Resort Arena, Phoenix, Arizona.
The weight issue:
Their originally scheduled super middleweight contest has since been altered to a maximum of 173 pounds to benefit Chavez Jr., who has once again struggled to honor a contracted limit.
Brooklyn’s Jacobs (35-3, 29KOs) still managed to hit the super middleweight mark, checking in at a fighting fit 167.9 pounds.
Mexico’s Chavez Jr. (51-3-1, 33KOs) tipped the scales at 172.7 pounds, the second heaviest of his 16-year career.
A 12-round loss to Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez in their three belt middleweight title unification bout this past May came with the decision to permanently move up the scales, a journey which begins Friday.
Chavez Jr. made things interesting throughout, only receiving unchallenged clearance to fight on Tuesday after having a Temporary Restraining Order issued against the Nevada State Athletic Commission to lift a previously imposed temporary suspension.
The evening’s chief support is arguably the fight the night, as Julio Cesar Martinez and Cristofer Rosales vie for a vacant flyweight title.
Martinez weighed in right at the flyweight limit of 112 pounds, while Nicaragua’s Rosales checked in at 111.3 pounds.
The belt at stake became available when prior claimant Charlie Edwards vacated in favor of a move up to junior bantamweight. Martinez was believed to have won the title in his own fight versus Edwards, only for his 3rd round knockout to be changed to a No-Contest due to Martinez unintentionally hitting his fallen foe while on the canvas.
An immediate rematch was ordered, only for Edwards—who claimed the belt in an upset win over Nicaragua’s Rosales last December—to vacate. The Eddy Reynoso-trained Martinez (14-1, 11KOs) was first in line, assigned to face Rosales (29-4, 20KOs), who rebounded from his title loss with a 7th round knockout this past August in his native Nicaragua.
Also on the show:
– Former 140-pound titlist Maurice Hooker (26-1-3, 17KOs) weighed 144.3 pounds for his 10-round welterweight bout versus Mexico’s Uriel Perez, who weighed 141.9 pounds. Hooker fights for the first time since a title-losing stoppage at the hands of Jose Carlos Ramirez, after which he enlisted the services of noted cornerman Brian ‘Bomac’ McIntyre;
– Former 154-pound titlist Liam Smith checked in at 159.9 pounds for a scheduled 10-round bout versus Roberto Garcia, who came in at 155.5 pounds for a bout he accepted on short notice;
– Unbeaten welterweight contender Josh Kelly tipped the scales at 150.4 pounds, while Winston Campos weighed 146.4 pounds for their 10-round bout. A win for Kelly will set up a challenge of European (EBU) welterweight titlist David Avanesyan in the first half of 2020.