By: William Holmes
Sergio Martinez, a top five pound for pound fighter, and Julio Cesar Chavez Jr., the son of a living legend and fast rising star, finally clashed tonight in a highly anticipated middleweight bout.
HBO wasted little time in moving right to the main event after the last fight of the under-card ended, and the Argentinian national anthem was sung first, followed by the Mexican national anthem. It was clear during the singing of the national anthems that the arena was packed with Mexican fans as they were loudly singing their national anthem. The American national anthem was sung last by the Las Vegas Mass Choir.
Martinez walked into the ring eleven years older than Chavez, three inches smaller than him, but with a one inch reach advantage. Even though Martinez is recognized by most as the true middleweight champion, he walked into the ring first.
Chavez Jr. walked in second , and followed his father Julio Cesar Chavez Sr. into the ring. Not surprisingly, Chavez Jr. received a much louder ovation as he walked into the ring.
The following is a round by round result of tonight’s main event.
Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. (46-0) vs. Sergio Martinez (49-2); WBC Middleweight Title
Martinez and Chavez came out to the center of the ring, and Chavez was clearly the taller fighter. Martinez came out aggressive with some early jabs and a straight left hand. Chavez did not throw many punches in the first minute of the first round. Martinez continued to stalk Chavez around the ring and stayed active with his jab. Chavez connected with a right hand to the body near the end of the first round, but Martinez was the aggressor and threw more and landed more. 10-9 round for Martinez.
Before the start of the second round Freddie Roach told Chavez that Martinez was moving into his right hand. Martinez landed an early combination, but Chavez answered with a right hand to the body. Martinez landed a solid two punch combination on Chavez and Chavez threw his hands in the air to say that the punches did not hurt him. Chavez landed two body shots on Martinez, and Martinez answered with a right hook. Martinez dropped his hands and invited Chavez to come forward and bring the pressure. Chavez traps Martinez near the corner and lands several punches to the body of Martinez. Chavez landed a solid left hook to the head of Martinez. Martinez used his hand speed to land some quick shots to the body of Chavez. Close round, but 10-9 for Martinez.
Martinez came out for round three and connected with an early jab upstairs and a cross to the body of Chavez. Martinez slipped two punches from Chavez and continued to pop Chavez with jabs and crosses to the body and head of Chavez. Martinez landed two very good jabs on Chavez as Chavez attempted to come forward. Martinez landed two clean straight left hands on Chavez. Chavez landed two solid left hooks to the body of Martinez. Martinez landed two short uppercuts on Chavez near the end of the round, and Chavez has blood coming from his mouth. A clear 10-9 round for Martinez.
Martinez could be seen calling Chavez to come forward and fight with him. Martinez has his hands straight down and continued to pick Chavez apart with jabs and crosses. Chavez landed a short uppercut, but missed wildly with a hook attempt to the body. Martinez landed with two more straight left hands and moves out of the way from any punches by Chavez. Chavez landed a hard right hand on Martinez by the ropes. Martinez connected with a good right hook on Chavez. Chavez compained about a low blow, and Martinez tagged him with a two punch combination immediately afterwards. Chavez landed two good right hooks on Martinez near the end of the round, but Martinez landed the last punch, a straight left hand. 10-9 round for Martinez.
Martinez came out in the fifth round the aggressor again, and peppered jabs and crosses at the guard of Chavez. Martinez popped Chavez with three jabs to his nose. Martinez stung Chavez with another good straight left hand, and followed that up with two straight left hands to the body of Chavez. Chavez has dropped his hands to his body, perhaps in response to the consistent body work of Martinez. Chavez landed a solid right hook on Martinez by the ropes, but Martinez was not hurt by it and landed three punches immediately afterwards. 10-9 round for Martinez.
Martinez comes out the aggressor again, and immediately lands several straight hands to the body of Chavez. Martinez popped Chavez with a straight left hand and then moved out of the way. Chavez connected with two hooks to the body of Martinez. Chavez moved forward and landed a few shots upstairs. Chavez landed a solid right hook to the head of Martinez and a good body shot. Chavez landed some solid punches, but Martinez answered with several punches to the head and body of Chavez. Martinez was landing several good shots to the body of Chavez, and Martinez landed another hard straight left hand. Chavez did better this round, but Martinez still won it 10-9.
Martinez landed the first two punches of the round, two jabs to the body of Chavez. Chavez was circling away from the left hand of Martinez. Chavez had blood coming out of his nose. Chavez landed two jabs. Martinez landed a thudding left hand to the body of Chavez and two strong jabs to his head. A straight left hand by Martinez got an audible reaction from the crowd. Martinez landed another hard straight left hand. Martinez had Chavez in trouble with several straight left hands to the body and head of Chavez. Chavez may be quitting mentally, and Martinez took some punches from Chavez but quickly fired back some in return. 10-9 Martinez.
Martinez is the fresher fighter, and both Chavez and Martinez land early jabs. Martinez popped Chavez with two jabs and a straight left hand. Martinez showed exceptional footwork with his ability to punch Chavez then move out of the way. Martinez taunted Chavez with his hands down and his face right in front of him. Chavez connected with a jab. Martinez bounced a two punch combination off the guard of Chavez. Chavez had Martinez momentarily trapped by the ropes and ate a hook to the body. Martinez got cut above his left eye in this round. This was a close round, but still 10-9 for Martinez.
Chavez was late leaving the stool coming out for round nine. Chavez landed a straight right hand on Martinez. Martinez connected with a straight left hand and a jab to the face of Chavez. Martinez landed two straight left hands, and some fans in the crowd begin to boo. Martinez kept his jab in the face of Chavez and at this point was completely dominating the fight. Martinez landed a rising straight left hand. Martinez connected with a very nice jab. Chavez landed a hard left jab, but Martinez answered with several had punches to the body of Chavez. 10-9 round for Martinez.
Martinez came out in round ten and was in complete control. Martinez again landed another hard jab to the face of Chavez. Martinez landed two good straight left hands to the body of Chavez. The crowd began to chant Mexico, but Martinez quickly silenced them with more pop shots from the outside. Martinez warned for a low blow on Chavez, and Martinez quickly apologized. Their heads clash near the center of the ring, and Martinez’s cut over his left eye opened up again. Chavez is bleeding badly from his nose and his mouth again. Martinez landed three solid right hands in a row, and Chavez looks like he may be confused. Martinez inexplicably falls to the ground, but it was clearly ruled a slip. 10-9 round for Martinez.
The fans in the arena were starting to sing, and Chavez was told by his corner that he needs a knockout to win. Martinez continued with his strategy of popping Chavez with his jab and straight left hands and moving out of the way of danger. Chavez landed a decent left hook, but Martinez landed three straight left hands to the face of Chavez. Chavez landed a hard right hand on Martinez, but Martinez immediately answered with a good two punch combination. Martinez ate two hooks from Chavez by the corner, and a good straight right hand, but Martinez fought his way out of trouble and pummeled Chavez with combinations. Both Chavez and Martinez are bleeding badly. Very good action this round, but again 10-9 for Martinez.
Chavez clearly needed the knockout in this round to win, and his left eye was badly swollen. Martinez came out in the last round the aggressor again, and popped Chavez with several jabs. Martinez landed two more solid jabs and circled away from Chavez. Martinez connected with two straight left hands on Martinez. Chavez landed a very good right hook that hurt Martinez. Martinez decided to exchange Chavez and is hit by Chavez again with a tough combination and Maravilla goes down! Martinez struggled to his feet after the knockdown. Chavez landed several hard hooks to the head of Martinez. Martinez again goes to the ground and it was correctly ruled a slip. Chavez looked like he may be tired, and landed some hooks by the ropes. Chavez was going for the knockout and landed several more good punches. Chavez landed another good hook, but Martinez survives. 10-8 round for Chavez.
Martinez clearly won a majority of the first eleven rounds, but Chavez put on an excellent show in the last round and made it a very exciting fight. Chavez was very close to winning the fight in the last round.
The official scores were 117-110, 118-109, and 118-109 for Sergio Martinez.