Pundits and hardcore fans have been looking at 2, and the Danny Jacobs vs Julio Cesar Chavez Jr 168 plus pound match, and wondering if it would come to fruition.
Junior was accused of dodging a PED test, and then had the Nevada commission place him on suspension, putting them at odds with the Arizona oversight body. The AZ commission was indicating they'd be OK with ignoring the Nevada punishment, and providing a sanctioned platform for the Brooklyn boxer to fight2 Nevada pushed back and their powers that be made it clear that this move by Arizona, and also promoter Eddie Hearn, was not kosher. Commissions by and large are supposed to back up other commissions, on most matters which lead to suspension, and this seemed a breach of protocol.
Today, Tuesday, in fact, Chavez Jr had to convince a court in Nevada that he should be allowed to ply his trade. And, whaddya know the judge in Clark Country saw it Chavez' way. (ESPN and Boxing Scene covered the court date, the two largest newspapers in Nevada didn't touch on the story.) So, we are a go. Will organizers still hold their collective breath until the bell rings to start round one? Can Chavez Jr make weight?
From a Dan Rafael/ESPN story:
Arizona was scheduled to discuss the issue at a commission meeting on Wednesday, but now it won't need to because Crockett, in his ruling, wrote that the Nevada commission lacked jurisdiction because Chavez was not licensed there, was not yet an applicant for a license and “did not consent to be bound by Defendants mandatory drug testing policy that was published on its website and directed only to licensees of the agency. The court further finds that Chavez subsequently passed a drug test administered by the Arizona Boxing Commission for which he holds a license.”
That was my instinct, that the Nevada oversight crew might not be able to make their suspension stick, because Chavez Jr didn't, technically, “fail a PED test.” He refused to submit a sample, and maybe the Ali Act needs to get a language tweak, to add “refusing to cooperate in obtaining sample” and lump that in with “failing” a PED test.
NOTE: There is testing being done for this clash, seemingly more stringent than what a state commission might typically order for such a contest.
One storyline some believe could loom larger than might be assumed…This will be Jacobs' first fight after parting ways with longtime coach Andre Rozier.
So, it looks like a go at Talking Stick, formerly US Airways Center, and before that America West Arena, in Phoenix. Yes, you might still be mildly skeptical, considering Juniors' history of hijinks..
..so people will be waiting with bated breath for the Thursday weigh in, ahead of the Friday tango.
When the bell rings to start round one, then everyone can relax.
Here is the release DAZN sent out touting the Jacobs return to the ring, and other samplings on their show:
PHOENIX, Arizona, Dec. 17, 2019 – Fight Season on DAZN closes out the year with a stacked card featuring Daniel ‘Miracle Man’ Jacobs making his super middleweight debut at 168 lbs. against Mexican star Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. on Friday, Dec. 20 at the Talking Stick Resort Arena.
The main card of the evening will highlight Julio Cesar Martinez taking on Cristofer Rosales for the vacant WBC World Flyweight title in a 12-round bout, and Maurice Hooker will make his welterweight debut against Uriel Perez in a 10-round bout. The preliminary bouts will showcase Liam Smith battling Roberto Garcia, Josh Kelly going up against Winston Campos, and undefeated Rashad Mati taking on Rakim Johnson.
Ahead of their bouts, the fighters took the podium in a press conference on Tuesday afternoon to discuss their preparation, and excitement going into Friday night.
DAZN coverage on Friday night will begin at 7 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. MST, with the main card starting at 9 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. MST.
“We’re happy to be here in Arizona. What a year we have had on DAZN, our first year promoting shows here in America. Tons of great fights, and who can forget the sweet moment when Anthony Joshua recaptured the heavyweight championship of the world in Saudi Arabia. We’re ready for another big night on Friday. We’re learning so much about the American market, and coming here seeing the response from Arizona has been incredible. It’s going to be a terrific atmosphere for the main event, Jacobs vs. Chavez Jr. at 168 lbs., and can’t wait for the young fighters coming through on the undercard. This is a big fight week, and so much talent we’re going to talk too.
It has been a magical year, this fight for me was a natural for me. When Jacobs lost the middleweight title to Canelo Alvarez we felt it was time to move up to the super middleweight division. Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. we know about the popularity with Julio, his father, this seemed like a natural fight to make. If you’ve watched on social media, Julio’s preparation for this fight, it looks like he has been training seven to eight times a day for this fight. This is Julio’s big opportunity to come back, and for Daniel Jacobs it’s his time to set up a shot at the world title in 2020.”
Daniel ‘Miracle Man’ Jacobs
“First off l like to thank the fans of Arizona. The amount of attention I’ve gotten has been through the roof. The fight fans are excited for a big fight card such as this, and I look forward to putting on a great show. I want to thank Eddie Hearn, Matchroom and DAZN for allowing to me display my skills on such a platform on such a level every boxer dreams of. I want to thank Chavez for accepting this fight, and his lawyer for doing a such a great job for making this fight happen.
This is a great opportunity for me. I’m stepping up to the super middleweight division. I feel like this is the perfect weight for me. I’m two pounds away from 168 lbs., and that’s probably the first time ever. I’m probably going to eat breakfast the morning of the fight. I feel strong, my whole camp has been positive and happy. I couldn’t have asked for a better camp than what I’ve had. I look forward to displaying those skills we worked on in the gym come Friday night. When I fought for the championship at middleweight and campaigned in the middleweight division for the last two years, you don’t understand the amount damage I put on my body to make weight.
We’ve been looking exceptionally well inside the gym, but those last two weeks is when we leave it it in the gym, and now I have the opportunity to carry over the skills, be hydrated, be 100%. Now I can let the skills my team sees, and give the world an opportunity to see that. I look forward to this test come Friday night. God willing we get the victory we can move on to bigger and better things.”
Julio Cesar Chavez Jr.
“Thank you Eddie Hearn, Matchroom and DAZN for giving me this opportunity. Thank you to Jacobs for giving me this opportunity in my career. I’m ready for this fight on Friday, I’m on a diet, I’m ready. I know Jacobs is a very good boxer and fighter. I’m 100% ready for this fight. I know him, I’ve seen him in fights, saw him in the loss to Canelo. I’m ready this will be a great fight. Thank you to my lawyer for helping me in this big movie with the commission. I’m ready and I came to win this fight.”
Julio Cesar Martinez
“I hope we have a great fight this Friday and let the best man win.”
“I’m really grateful for being here. I’m grateful for the opportunity to fight here. Blessing for everyone.”
“I’m happy to be here and going to put on a show on Friday. I want to let everyone know in the world to know, I’m back! I’m happy about this fight an hopefully get another title shot at 140 lbs. I don’t want to go out like that, I feel like I’m one of the best at 140, and I’m going to put on a show on Friday. I’m not overlooking my opponent, I know he’s a last minute opponent, he’s a good fighter, and he’s tough. I’m going to show the world why I’m on a whole other level, and show you all why I’m one of the best at 140 lbs.”
“I have nothing much to say, I’m really happy for this fight. My rival is a bigger height, but I respect him and all the fighters that are here. Hoping to close very well.”
“I got called for this fight on Sunday, which is awesome because my anniversary was on Saturday. Some think it’s short notice, but it’s not cause as a fighter it’s never short notice. I’m grateful for this opportunity, and I’m going to make the best of it.”
“Glad to be fighting again. I’m happy we got a good opponent, Roberto Garcia is coming to win. I know he will be fit and ready. I’m in very good shape and had a very good camp. Looking forward to fighting, and want to be back in the mix for the titles.”