He performed for the first time as a professional boxer at the age of 17. He faced Miguel Ruiz during his twelfth fight on March 4, 1981. At the end of the first round, his delivery of blow knocked Ruiz out. The blow was delivered as the bell sounded; as a result Chavez was disqualified and Ruiz won the bout. But on the next day, when his manager Ramon Felix and the Mexican boxing commission changed the result, he was proclaimed the winner.
On September 13, 1984, he knocked out Mario “Azabache” Martinez at the Grand Olympic Auditorium in Los Angeles, California. This win brought him his first championship title, the WBC Super Featherweight.
He won against former WBA and future IBF Super Featherweight champion Rocky Lockridge on August 3, 1986 in Monte Carlo, Monaco. In the next round, he defeated former champion Juan Laporte, by a controversial decision.
In November 1987, after shifting his preference to the lightweight division, he faced WBA Lightweight Champion Edwin Rosario. Chavez fought outstandingly to defeat Rosario by an eleventh round TKO.
On April 16, 1988, Chavez defeated top ranked contender Rodolfo Aguilar in sixth round knockout.
On June 4, 1988, he defeated former two-time champion Rafael Lim�n in seventh round knockout to successfully defend his title.
In the same year, he faced Jose Luis Ramirez. Due to an injury on Ramirez’s forehead, the match was halted. After considering the scorecards, the judges declared Chavez as the winner. This victory earned him ‘The Ring’ Lightweight title.
This incident created great agitation amongst fans and media. Later, “The Ring”, an American boxing magazine referred this fight as the “Fight of the Year” for 1990.
On April 10, 1992, he defeated Angel Hernandez in the fifth round. In the same year, he also defeated Frankie Mitchell by fourth round TKO.
Continue Reading Below
In 1992, he faced Hector “Macho” Camacho and defeated him. For his remarkable performance in this fight, the Mexican President Carlos Salinas de Gortari sent a special car for him to take him from the airport to the President’s house after his arrival in Mexico.
In 1993, he also won a fight against Greg Haugen .In September of the same year, he challenged Pernell Whitaker for his WBC Welterweight title. The match ended in a draw.
In December 1993, he defeated Andy Holligan, the British Commonwealth Light Welterweight Champion by fifth round TKO.
In January 1994, Chavez was knocked down for the first time in his career, when he lost to Frankie Randall in a split decision.He blamed the match referee Richard Steele for his defeat in the fight as the referee deducted two points from his scorecard for his delivery of low blows. This match created much uproar in the media.
When the WBC organized a rematch, he won the fight on a split technical decision in May 1994. Later, he faced Meldrick Taylor whom he defeated in the eighth round.
In 1995, he won a fight against Light Welterweight Champion Giovanni Parisi. In the same year, he defended his title against David Kamau, the number one ranked challenger.
In 1997, he fought against Miguel Angel Gonzalez for the vacant WBC Light Welterweight title which ended in a double draw. But he faced defeat against De La Hoya in a rematch in September 1998.
In 1999, Chavez won his first two bouts before losing to newcomer Willy Wise.
In 2000, he challenged Light Welterweight Champion Kostya Tszyu but lost the bout in the 6th round TKO.
Continue Reading Below
In 2001, Chavez retired after a victory over Terry Thomas.
He came out of the retirement on November 24, 2003 to avenge his avenge his earlier loss to Willy Wise, and knocked him out in two rounds.
In April 2004, Chavez defeated Frankie Randall, in what he claimed would be his last appearance.
On May 28, 2005, Chavez once again donned the boxing gloves and knocked out Ivan Robinson in ten rounds.
On September 17, 2005, he lost to Grover Wiley and retired after injuring his right hand.