CANELO ALVAREZ has opened up about his bad blood with ‘little kid’ Julio Cesar Chavez Jr ahead of their grudge match this weekend.
The pair will finally trade leather this Saturday night from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, live on BoxNation, with two-weight world champion Canelo revealing where the feud between the Mexican rivals originated.
“This rivalry goes back about ten years, you know, to our time in 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,” said Canelo.
“As a person, I don’t know him 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,” he said.
31-year-old Chavez Jr was equally vocal about the duos long-standing ill will, believing that this fight is the most important of his 14-year career and one he can win by knockout.
“Yes, there’s a real, true rivalry, and on Saturday night, people are going to see firsthand this rivalry, how real it is. Obviously we’re going to show it inside the ring,” said Chavez Jr.
“I do feel that this fight is the biggest fight of my career, just because it’s a big event, because of who I’m fighting and because of the opportunity. I’m going to take advantage of it and make the best of it.
“I feel I can knock him out. I feel that I’m a bigger guy. I fought at light heavyweight. He’s never fought fighters this size, and because of that, if things pan out and I get the right shot, I think of course the knockout can happen,” he said.
There is high expectation in the Chavez Jr camp, with his legendary father, Julio Cesar Chavez, recently commenting that this was a fight where “Julio has to show that he has my genes – that he has my balls”.
The former middleweight world champion is aware of what is on the line having changed his team around in the build up, bringing in the much respected Nacho Beristain to train him, but will still use his father as inspiration for the fight.
“I like my father to be around. It’s okay when he’s around. It’s just important for him to understand that he’s not my trainer,” Chavez Jr said.
“Sometimes we don’t always transmit instructions the way we would like for them to come out, but I have my own trainer. I picked Nacho Beristain, who is a great trainer; one of the best in the history of boxing.
“But I will say that a lot of what I learned in boxing, I learned it watching my father as a little kid. I grew up watching him my whole life, and I learned a lot of what I know from watching my father,” he said.
Flame-haired Canelo, however, believes that he is someone who has had the easy route and is riding on the coattails of his father’s success.
“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.
“He 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, because he’s shown a lot of ups and downs in his career, and he himself has not had a real disciplined career,” said Canelo.
“He is not a role model for the young children and the young fighters. And you know what, I’ve always said, whether I have 1,000, 5,000, 20,000 or millions, I’m very fortunate. I’m very happy and I’m very appreciative of my fans and I’ll give them 100 percent all the time,” he said.