- Dan Rafael, ESPN Senior Writer
- 0 Shares
A fight between super middleweight titlist Carl Froch and Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. is back in discussions, but rather than the fall, as originally intended, the new target date is Jan. 24 as an HBO PPV headliner in Las Vegas.
England's Froch (33-2, 24 KOs) made it clear after his big, eighth-round knockout of George Groves in their May 31 rematch (in front of some 80,000 at Wembley Stadium in London) that he wanted a big fight in Las Vegas, and Chavez fits that bill.
Although the sides couldn't work things out for the fall, early 2015 is looking good.
"Talks have re-opened with Top Rank regarding a proposed Froch versus Chavez fight with a date of Jan. 24th penciled," Matchroom Boxing's Eddie Hearn, Froch's promoter, told ESPN.com on Tuesday. "Obviously, we have the potential to make another big domestic fight against [mandatory challenger] James DeGale and even a third fight with Mikkel Kessler, but either way we have given ourselves a deadline of 10 days to two weeks to map out Carl's future."
Arum said he has been talking to his old friend, Barry Hearn, Eddie's father and company founder, about making the fight.
"We're well on our way to making that fight for Jan. 24," Arum said.
The question, however, is will Arum be able to close a deal with Chavez?
Remember, Chavez, a former middleweight titleholder and one of boxing's biggest attractions, was supposed to fight Gennady Golovkin in an HBO PPV main event on July 19 at the Forum in Inglewood, California, but Chavez and Arum could not come to terms, even though Golovkin's side was done. The issue was Top Rank's desire for Chavez (48-1-1, 32 KOs), of Mexico, to sign a contraction extension. Chavez didn't want to. He could have had the Golovkin fight for one purse without an extension or signed the extension and received a much larger purse.
So how will things be different as they try to make a fight with Froch?
Arum said he met with Chavez's father, Julio Cesar Chavez Sr., manager Billy Keane and Mexican promoter Fernando Beltran, who has been involved in Chavez's career since the beginning, on Sunday at his home in Los Angeles, and things went well.
"I'm convinced we can get it done," Arum said. "I made a proposal that I don't want to get into, but I think it would be acceptable."
Keane could not be reached for comment.
If the fight is indeed finalized, Arum said it would take place at the MGM Grand, perhaps a surprise to some because of what happened in April, when Arum eviscerated MGM executives for promoting the Floyd Mayweather Jr.-Marcos Maidana fight heavily during the week of his Manny Pacquiao-Timothy Bradley II event.
"Business is business. They know this would be a big event there, and what happened with Pacquiao is not an issue that would affect Chavez and Froch," Arum said, adding that his stepson, Todd duBoef, Top Rank's president, had smoothed things over with Bill Hornbuckle, the president and chief marketing officer of MGM Resorts.
By waiting until January to fight again, Chavez will go a second year with only one fight. He fought once in 2013, a controversial decision win against Bryan Vera, and has fought once this year, a dominant decision win against Vera in the March 1 rematch.