A Contrast in Conquerors

by Eric Raskin

The record books will show that Adonis Stevenson and Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. both won light heavyweight fights on the night of Sept. 29, 2013. That is quite literally where the similarities end.

While Stevenson elevated his stock significantly by shutting out and stopping Tavoris Cloud in his first defense of the lineal 175-pound title, Chavez’s reputation was decimated in what three California judges, but hardly anybody else, deemed a decision victory over journeyman Brian Vera. At age 27, Chavez’s questionable training habits are causing him to regress as both a fighter and an attraction. At age 36, Stevenson is still approaching his peak and is on the verge of genuine stardom earned with his fists, not his heritage.

In the opening bout of the split-site doubleheader, Stevenson returned to the scene of his shocking title win three months ago over Chad Dawson, the Bell Centre in Montreal. The southpaw self-styled “Superman” soared past Dawson with a first-round knockout, but the mere 76 seconds of action left us with plenty of questions. For seven rounds against former beltholder Cloud, Stevenson provided answers.

Read the Complete Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. vs. Bryan Vera Fight Recap on HBO.com.