Father: Chavez Jr. needs to dedicate himself

Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. celebrated after a controversial unanimous decision victory over Bryan Vera. Chirs Farina/Top Rank

LOS ANGELES -- Julio Cesar Chavez Sr. has very important advice for his son: If he wants to return to the limelight, he has to be fully dedicated to boxing.

In veiled criticism of his son Julio Cesar Chavez Jr., the legendary Mexican boxer said there are many things that have to be corrected, including the training for his upcoming bouts. Chavez Jr. scored a controversial decision victory over Bryan Vera last Saturday in Carson, Calif., looking slow and unprepared throughout.

"I think we have to correct many things, many things are wrong," said Chavez Sr., who worked in his son's corner for the first time during the Vera fight. "The good thing is that the fight happened. I wanted the fight to happen and [to] finally take control of my son, Julio. For him to have other attitudes, he has to change the way he looks at boxing because he can't do it this way."

Chavez Sr. wasn't specific on what the attitudes were, but noted that Chavez Jr. has to start training thoroughly and without distractions. Top Rank originally signed this fight at 168 pounds, but had to renegotiate the compensation to Vera because of Chavez Jr.'s apparent weight problems just days before the fight.

"Yes, definitively, he has to be more responsible in all aspects," Chavez Sr. said. "[He has to] prepare thoroughly for each of his fights because these things can't go on. Fortunately everything happened already."

Although he admitted he was pleased by the way Chavez Jr. threw punches and how he sometimes counterpunched, Chavez Sr. said his son would have thrown more punches had he not injured his right hand, which was originally feared broken.

"No, [I'm] not very pleased," Chavez said. "I wish that Julio had knocked him out and that there wasn't so much controversy. Unfortunately, he couldn't."

The injury appears to be an inflammation that could curtail Chavez Jr.'s intentions of fighting 168-pound titlist Sakio Bika in December. It also likely eliminates the option of a rematch with Marco Antonio Rubio for an interim middleweight title, after an injury took out regular champion Sergio Martinez, who defeated Chavez Jr. last September.

"Julio wants to fight in December for the WBC super-middleweight championship at 168 pounds," Chavez Sr. said. "If it happens, we will fight. If not, we will wait."

Chavez Sr. left the door open for his son to drop back down to 160 pounds for a second chance against Martinez, but conditioned it on how much dedication his son was willing to do.

"In his world championship bouts at 160, Julio made 158 pounds," Chavez Sr. said. "I believe that if Julio prepares thoroughly and takes things seriously, he can go down to 160 pounds."

Although Chavez Sr. said he will continue to help his son in the corner, he looks forward to the possible return of Freddie Roach, in such a way that helps Chavez Jr. improve his speed.

"I think Freddie Roach will return as Julio needs all the speed he can and in that we will see him in the future," Chavez Sr. said.

Regarding his debut working the corner, the legendary former champion said he felt fine and more relieved than when he shouted ringside instructions in the past.

"I felt good, I felt calm," he said. "We were doing a good job until he hurt his right hand in the fourth round and had to change the strategy. I think that Julio didn't fight for the public, he made a fight to win and for me, he truly threw the best punches, nearly knocking [Vera] out three times."