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Chavez vs Lee Update: Press Conference Goes Ahead As Scheduled, Fight Still On For Now

Julio Cesar Chavez Jr and Andy Lee are still scheduled to fight on June 16, for now at least.
Julio Cesar Chavez Jr and Andy Lee are still scheduled to fight on June 16, for now at least.

Earlier today it was reported that the June 16 fight between Julio Cesar Chavez Jr and Andy Lee will no longer take place at the Sun Bowl in El Paso, as security issues were cited as a concern by the University of Texas Board of Regents.

But today's scheduled press conference went ahead anyway, in El Paso, and the official Top Rank stance right now is that the fight is going to happen on June 16, just at a site to be determined. On the surface, without knowing if there's anything goofy going on otherwise, the date is incredibly valuable for Top Rank and for HBO, and for the fighters. Since the fight is scheduled to take place one week after Pacquiao vs Bradley, it will get a little viewership bump thanks to the replay of that fight.

Chavez (45-0-1, 31 KO) will defend his WBC middleweight title against Lee (28-1, 20 KO) if the fight does still happen, and the winner is in theory then to face Sergio Martinez in September.

One note that does have some skeptical about all of this from a shady boxing perspective is that Chavez's team has made clear twice they're not interested in fighting Andy Lee, entirely because Lee is a southpaw. They turned him down as a potential opponent late last year, and also tried to turn him down for the June date, instead lining up another righty, Martin Murray, but Murray couldn't get a work visa in time, and thus couldn't come to the States for the fight. Lee was basically a last resort, accepted because he had to be. There's no reason to believe Chavez's team actually wants this fight, which is not saying it's anything to do with Chavez.

We'll see. For now the skepticism is quite understandable, all things considered (like that it's boxing we're talking about), but the official line for the moment is that the fight will go on, just not at the Sun Bowl, and perhaps not in El Paso at all, even though there are other venues there.

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