By Francisco Salazar
“Lightning never strikes twice.”
Do not tell that phrase to Bryan Vera.
He, and to the eyes of most media and boxing fans, believes that he outboxed Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. over 10 rounds in their clash at the Stubhub Center in Carson, CA on September 28th.
It was very difficult for Vera to accept defeat to Chavez, especially through the circumstances in the buildup to the fight.
Rather than accept defeat, Vera is confident he can outbox Chavez again this Saturday night at the Alamodome in San Antonio, TX. Only this time Vera is confident he will have his hand raised in victory.
The rematch will be televised live at 9:45 ET/ 6:45 PT on HBO.
Vera may not be every boxing fan’s favorite fighter. But one has to admire his tenacity, grit, and assertiveness in the ring. It has won him fights he was not expected to win, from Andy Lee to Sebastian Demers to Sergio Mora (twice).
The fighter from Austin, TX may not be the most technically sound fighter on the planet. But he knows how to beat his opponents with sheer will, determination, and aggressiveness.
It was a formula he believed got him the victory in his first fight against Chavez. While it was a disappointment he did not get the victory, his motivation and drive, along with his skills, is what he believes will get him the victory.
“I just have this drive and motivation for this fight,” Vera told Boxingscene.com over the phone earlier this week. “I know there are some who think Chavez will win this time around. I want to prove those people wrong. That’s why I’m going in stronger and taking the fight to him.”
Although one would think Vera might be hesitant to trust the judges, should the fight go the distance, he trusts the Texas Commission on being unbiased while scoring the fight.
“I have a lot of faith in the Commission,” said Vera, who is promoted by Banner Promotions. “I just want a fair shot. I don’t want any advantage from them and I don’t think they’ll show any favoritism to Chavez. I do expect them to be fair on Saturday.”
Vera could have walked away from a Chavez rematch. Vera has numerous incentives of why a rematch was agreed to.
Vera is likely getting a six-figure purse to fight Chavez on Saturday night. Not to mention an agreement between Banner Promotions and Top Rank that if Chavez weighs more than contracted weight of 168 pounds, he will have to forfeit $250,000 to Vera. Top Rank promotes Chavez.
Or, it could be Vera is fighting for his family and for the moment, a significant payday and possible bonus could go a long way.
Vera was raised by a single parent, a mother who worked multiple jobs to support him and his two brothers. One of his brothers suffers from a brain injury and Vera believes he is obligated to take care of him.
Vera was not raised to believe he should have things handed to him. Yet, he believes Chavez has had things handed to him as a pro, especially after what happened prior to the first fight, when the contracted weight was increased at least three times.
“I feel disrespected that everything is handed to him. I think it’s disrespectful to the sport. I have a lot of respect for Chavez, Sr., because he worked hard for what he got. I think Chavez (Jr.) has been babied his whole career and people are starting to see that.”
“I don’t think he’s as disciplined as I am.”
One cannot knock Vera for his attempting to fulfill his ambitions and goals. He does not only believe, but he knows he can outbox Chavez again and that it will result in a victory this time around.
Vera does not want history to repeat itself in that he could be cheated out of a victory as he was in the first fight.
He just wants to put forth a solid effort that will get him respect. A victory would be nice because that could lead to more lucrative or big money bouts.
A victory on Saturday night would open those doors.
“I never take anything for granted. I just feel that the hard work I put in will pay off (on Saturday night).
Francisco A. Salazar has written for Boxingscene.com since September of 2012 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. He also covers boxing for the Ventura County (CA) Star newspaper, Knockout Nation, and RingTV. He can be reached by email at [email protected] or on Twitter at FSalazarBoxing