It can’t be easy being the son of a legend.
No matter the sport, having to fill the shoes of an athlete most view as an all-time great can be a no-win situation. If you win, it’s because of your father. If you lose, you'll never be as good as your father.
Enter undefeated middleweight Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. (42-0-1), who will take on WBC champ Sebastian Zbik on Saturday night at the Staples Center on HBO.
The son of multi-division champion Julio Cesar Chavez, Chavez Jr., will follow in the footsteps of other father-son tandems. Among those duos include Floyd and Tracy Patterson, Leon and Cory Spinks and Floyd and Floyd Mayweather Jr.
Chavez Sr. is set to be inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame.
Taking on his heritage doesn’t seem to be a problem for Chavez Jr., who wears his father’s name like a badge of honor. But he also is looking to create his own path.
“This is the perfect opportunity for me to create my own history. My name is Julio César Chávez right now and it will always be my name and I’m very proud to carry that name,” Chavez Jr. said. “I am ready right now to win the title and decide my own history and my own legacy.”
Chavez Jr.’s famous name notwithstanding, he won’t get any breaks in this fight. Zbik (30-0) is a formidable opponent. Outside of a unanimous win over John Duddy last year, Chavez Jr. has few signature wins to think of and needs this bout to really separate himself from his father.
“This is great for me and I’m very excited and happy that I am fighting for my first world title in the same city [Los Angeles] that my father won his first world title,” Chavez Jr. said. “My father will also be going to the Hall of Fame next week and he earned that and I am happy for him but right now I’m not even thinking about that. I’m thinking about my fight on June 4 and winning a world title.”