By Sean Crose
Julio Caesar Chavez Jr has passed on yet another fight – this time against super middleweight champ Andre Dirrell. It also appears that Chavez Jr doesn’t want to fight British superstar Carl Froch, either – even though Froch has shown a genuine interest in fighting him. That particular fight, were it to happen, would be a big deal. Then again, a fight between Chavez Jr and Gennady Golovkin would have been a big deal, as well. Yet Chavez Jr. didn’t want that fight, either.
It’s becoming clear at this point that Chavez Jr simply isn’t crazy about boxing. Maybe he never was. Being the son of the great Julio Caesar Chavez instantly made him royalty in the sport. Perhaps, though, the young Mexican was handed a crown he never wanted. The assertive Chavez Sr. is most likely a tough influence to break away from, after all.
Maybe, when all is said and done, this is all just a case of a kid who was thrown into the family business, only to learn it wasn’t for him. The symptoms of such a scenario are often clear: the son simply isn’t as good at the job as the father, the son frequently gets preferential treatment, people resent the son, the son becomes even more disinterested in the entire endeavor.
One has to wonder if it would simply be better for Chavez Jr to step back now while the going’s good. There’s still a strong fan base, after all. What’s more, he’s still at the top of his game. His personal mountain may not be the Everest people wanted it to be, but he’s still on top of it, nonetheless.
People might call him a quitter for stepping away from the sport so soon, but those people aren’t the ones who are being asked to step into a small ring with the likes of Carl Froch and Gennady Golovkin. Boxing is a brutal business and those who want to avoid it shouldn’t be criticized.
Besides, if Chavez Jr were to step away, he would instantly become less off putting a figure. Whether it’s fair or not, Chavez Jr is currently seen as being spoiled, childish and petulant. That’s not the kind of reputation the father of a baby girl wants to have following him around. Aside from the initial griping from his fan base, Chavez Jr would soon find his life to be a lot quieter if he were to retire now.
Yet that would mean he’d have to find another line of work. Chavez Jr. has made a lot of money as it is, sure, but it’s not THAT much money, when the big picture is viewed. This is still a young man, a young man with a family to look after. More money is going to have to start coming in at some point. After a point, the inevitable question of what else can this young man do arises.
When viewed through a certain prism, the Chavez Jr saga is a sad one. At worst the world is presented with a grown adult who behaves like a brat. At best the world is presented with a young man who has found himself in a most dangerous game that he doesn’t want to be a part of. Both scenarios are unpleasant. In short, it’s hard to imagine Chavez Jr being a happy man. And that’s too bad.
Still, there are a lot of unhappy young men out there. And few have had the opportunities Chavez Jr has had. Sometimes making a cold, hard decision ends up being the first step to leading a more contented life. Chavez Jr might want to consider that.