Canelo Alvarez vs. Caleb Plant Preview
By Robert Ecksel on September 22, 2021
Canelo is a four-weight champion, having captured titles at 154, 160, 168 and 175 pounds.
On Saturday, November 6, in a fight televised live on Showtime PPV from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, WBC/WBA/WBO champion Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (56-1-2, 38 KOs), the freckled face of boxing from Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico, will meet his IBF counterpart Caleb Plant 21-0, 12 KOs), the precise boxer-puncher from Ashland City, Tennessee, in a super middleweight unification bout.
Canelo is a four-weight champion, having held titles at 154, 160, 168 and 175 pounds. He turned pro at the tender age of 15. At 31 he is a seasoned veteran, as well as a beautiful boxing creation, thanks in no small part to his trainer Eddy Reynoso. His career has been rigorously mapped. In large part built on limited competition, with worthy exceptions to the rule, he was even willing to accept a loss when it was worth it. But now in his glorious prime, Canelo wants to beat everyone there is to beat and the sooner the better.
“At the end of the day, this is what I want to do with my career, make history,” said Canelo, who delivers soundbites with the same efficiency as his left hook. “These things, like becoming the first to be the unified champion at 168 pounds, is making history. To potentially be one of the few who holds this prestigious honor in any weight class makes me very happy. For my country, this would be a huge accomplishment. I want to be remembered as one of the greatest in the history of the sport.”
Twenty-eight-year-old Caleb Plant shocked the world in January 2019 when he dethroned defending IBF champion Jose Uzcategui. He was the underdog that night. He’ll be the underdog when he meets Canelo. Plant is undefeated. He's a world champion. He's no slouch. He may lack explosive one-punch power, but he has a world-class boxing brain and the reflexes to go with it.
“On November 6, the world will witness boxing’s first ever crowned undisputed super middleweight champion,” said Plant. “When my hand is raised in victory, the world will know then, that I’m the new face of boxing. Everyone should order the PPV now and get their popcorn ready, because I’m about to put on a performance that will go down in history as one of the best ever. This man is in trouble.”
There's one small problem. Trouble is Canelo's middle name.
Let the games begin
The first presser of the fight was a big hit. Those with limited interest in Canelo vs. Plant are paying attention, now that the two fighters have traded barbs and punches in LA. The skirmish wasn’t at the exalted level of Mike Tyson biting the thigh of Lennox Lewis during their pre-fight skirmish in 2002. But the bad blood between the two super middleweight champions has been spilled and boxing again is making news.
Facing off for the cameras, Canelo and Plant were insulting each other, jawboning to the amusement of those sharing the stage. Plant reportedly called Canelo a “motherfucker.” Canelo didn't like it and used both hands to shove Plant back several feet. Plant bounded forward and threw a left hook. Canelo ducked under the sucker punch. Then he landed a counterpunch that smashed his sunglasses and cut his right cheek..
Was it a dirty word that got Canelo, who is a pretty cool customer, so riled up?
“You can say whatever to me, but not to my mom,” he explained. “I’m going to fight anyone who says something about my mom. And he swung first. I just pushed him. He swung first, and I do what I do. He crossed the line.”