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Chavez, Gonzalez Draw in WBC Fight

March 8, 1998

MEXICO CITY (AP) _ A visibly tired and battered Julio Cesar Chavez fought fellow Mexican Miguel Angel Gonzalez to a draw Saturday for the vacant World Boxing Council super lightweight title.

It was a very cautious regulation 12-round bout, with Chavez mostly defending himself against Gonzalez. The veteran Chavez ended up bleeding profusely from the nose and with a swollen left cheek.

American judge Terry Smith scored it 115-114 for Chavez, Larry O’Connell of Britain favored Gonzalez 116-114 and American Chuck Hassett saw it as a 15-115 draw.

Gonzalez started Chavez’s nosebleed in the third round, and a 1-2 in the fifth made it worse. By the ninth round, Chavez’s face was constantly smeared with blood. A round later, his left cheek started to swell.

The two exchanged a flurry of strong blows in the last round, and referee Jose Guadalupe Garcia of Mexico had to stop the fight for a few seconds for the blood to be wiped from Chavez’s face.

A standing room crowd of more than 50,000 fans at Plaza Mexico stadium, rooting for Chavez all along, booed and whistled and threw things into the ring when the decision was announced.

Chavez, 35, is on the downside of a brilliant career. He is one of the few modern fighters to record 100 victories and a six-time world champion. Gonzalez, 27, was hoping to begin building his reputation at the expense of the ex-champion.

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