photo by Rachel McCarson
Middleweights Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. and Andy Lee both made weight Friday ahead of their scheduled showdown in El Paso, Texas. The bout will be televised live Saturday on HBO World Championship Boxing beginning at 10:00 p.m. ET.
Challenger Andy Lee was first to the scale where officials announced a weight of 159.25 pounds. The usually mild-mannered Lee appeared focused and determined, even going so far as to wear a scowl for the majority of the time he stood on the dais.
Next up was Chavez, who was cheered on heavily by the robust, pro-Mexican crowd of spectators who had waited patiently in line outside the venue to see him before jamming themselves into one of the city’s more famous landmarks, the historic Plaza Theatre.
Chavez, son of legendary Mexican champion of the same name, has developed a reputation as of late for not taking training camps as seriously as perhaps his handlers would like, but he looked fit and ready to rumble this go around, weighing in at 159 pounds.
Both fighters appeared to be in impeccable shape and ready to rumble.While fans of Chavez made up the majority of spectators present as expected, there was a noticeable contingent of pro-Lee supporters donning classic gold and black Kronk gym colors there as well.
Several notable prospects are on the bill for Saturday night in non-televised action. Local kid Abie Han (16-0, 10 KOs) enjoyed the loudest cheers of anyone not named Chavez from the vocal cast of on-lookers.The middleweight prospect from El Paso will face New Mexico’s Joseph Gomez (18-5-1, 8 KOs).
One of San Antonio’s best young prospects, bantamweight Adam Lopez, (2-0, 1 KO) will continue his young career Saturday night. Trained by notable cornerman Ronnie Shields, Lopez will try and bolster his stock by shellacking Raul Carillo (1-5, 1 KOs).
Welterweight Alex Saucedo (3-0, 3 KOs) from Oklahoma City will face James Harrison (1-0-1, 1 KOs) in a battle of undefeateds. Top Rank brass have high hopes for the 17-year-old Saucedo so mark him down as someone to keep an eye on.
The co-featured bout of the evening will be IBF lightweight titlist Miguel Angel Vazquez (30-3, 13 KOs) taking on Daniel Attah, who has lost four of his last five fights.
Before the weigh in began, Mayor John Cook presented WBC president Jose Sulaiman a ceremonial key to the city of El Paso, thanking him for his outstanding contributions to some of El Paso’s biggest sporting events.