Tempers flared, mildly, as Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. mocked Sergio Martinez, saying he found his true calling as a "ballerina," during a Thursday press conference at the Edison Ballroom in NYC to hype the Chavez-Martinez bout which unfolds on Sept. 15 in Las Vegas.
Chavez, the son of the Hall of Famer Chavez Sr. who has in his own right become a respected hitter in the sphere, referenced Martinez's stint on Argentina's "Dancing with the Stars." Martinez has danced twice on that show, and will be back next season, to dance more.
A source tells us that during a promo photo shoot before the presser, Junior had a game face on, was semi-surly, while Martinez seemed more relaxed.
The background here: Martinez has for about two years called a Junior a chicken, saying that he was avoiding this fight. Rather than seeing that as gamesmanship, and business, it looks like Chavez has internalized it. His father, we hear, is even more heated, sticking up for his son, and looked a couple times at the presser like he wants to come out of retirement.
The most heat during the presser came when Fernando Beltran, Chavez' co-promoter, reminded all that he went on a radio show in Mexico about seven months ago and called Martinez an expletive deleted. That enraged Martinez's advisor Sampson Lewkowicz, who stood up and looked ready to rumble in NYC, but order was restored.
Tonight, the fighters will tape Max Kellerman's "Face Off" from 3 to 7 p.m. at a studio in Chelsea. One can guess some more bad blood will boil there.