Julio Cesar Chavez Jr.’s top fights

When Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. takes on Canelo Alvarez on Saturday, he’ll enter the ring years removed from some of his best nights.

Chavez, 31, last held a world title in 2012 but has seen his career stall in recent years because of inactivity, two defeats and a failed drugs test.

But what are his best performances?

ESPN looks at Chavez’s most significant fights.

Brian Vera – UD12, March 1, 2014, Alamodome, San Antonio

Six months after earning a unanimous decision win over Vera, Chavez produced the same result in the rematch, but this time in more impressive fashion.

This was Chavez’s last really significant win. With his famous father at ringside commentating, he dominated behind a sharp jab to earn scores of 117-110, 117-110 and 114-113 from the judges.

Chavez won the super middleweight fight after escaping with a controversial decision in their previous meeting, in which he was out of shape and had to pay Vera six figures to agree to increase the weight limit from 168 to 173 pounds.

“This time I prepared to win round by round and not to make weight,” Chavez said.

Chavez was motivated for this fight like he had not been for others before it, and he had heavier power in his shots.

Vera has lost three of his five fights since.

Andy Lee – TKO7, June 16, 2012, Sun Bowl, El Paso

An impressive seventh-round stoppage of Irishman Lee elevated Chavez to the highest status of his career.

Chavez started sluggishly, something he attributed to legs cramps early on in the fight, and Lee had a two-point lead on all three scorecards at the time of the stoppage.

In the fifth round, Chavez taunted Lee when he dropped his gloves, and from then on he took control. He landed a right uppercut and then a combination that forced the stoppage in the seventh.

The win set up a title unification bout with Sergio Martinez.

Marco Antonio Rubio – UD12, Feb. 4, 2012, Alamodome, San Antonio

Chavez shrugged off pre-fight problems, and good conditioning allowed him to prevail on points after a slugfest.

Two weeks before fight night, Chavez was arrested on charges of drunk driving and spent part of the night in jail. There were also concerns about his weight, but he still had enough stamina and determination to earn a decision.

“The fact that I had so much trouble making weight didn’t allow me to knock him out,” said Chavez, who earned scores of 118-110, 116-112 and 115-113 in a second WBC title defense.

Chavez landed twice as many blows as Rubio.

Sebastian Zbik, MD12, June 4, 2011, Staples Center, Los Angeles

Chavez came out on top on two of the judges’ scorecards after a brawl with Zbik to win the WBC middleweight title at age 25.

Chavez started slowly before dominating after the seventh round, attacking the body to slow Zbik down.

The last round was a toe-to-toe affair. Two judges scored it 115-113 and 116-112 for Chavez, and the third judge scored it a draw.

You make the call:

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