Canelo eyes undisputed history in Plant showdown
Mexican pound-for-pound king Saul “Canelo” Alvarez has his sights on signing up with an unique club on Saturday as he intends to end up being the very first indisputable super-middleweight champ in boxing history.
The 31-year-old star deals with Caleb Plant at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas wanting to include his American challenger’s IBF belt to his WBA, WBC and WBO titles in a winner-take-all face-off.
Alvarez would end up being the 6th male fighter because the WBO started approving world title battles in 1988 to hold the 4 belts from boxing’s alphabet soup of governing bodies concurrently.
Just 5 other fighters — Oleksandr Usyk (cruiserweight), Bernard Hopkins (middleweight), Jermain Taylor (middleweight), Terence Crawford (super-lightweight) and Josh Taylor (super-lightweight) — have actually held all 4 belts at the same time.
“Only five male fighters in the history of boxing have accomplished becoming undisputed champion,” Alvarez stated. “I want to be the sixth. That’s the only thing on my mind.
“This battle is going to be history. You’re going to be experiencing something that you’re going to keep in mind for a long time.”
Alvarez last defended his titles in May, battering Britain’s Billy Joe Saunders into submission with an eight round stoppage in Arlington, Texas, to improve to 56-1 with two drawn and 38 knockouts.
The lone blemish on Alvarez’s record remains his majority decision defeat to Floyd Mayweather at the MGM Grand in 2013.
It will be a monumental upset if Plant adds another defeat to the Mexican’s record on Saturday — bookmakers have Alvarez as a 1/12 favorite while Plant is a 6/1 underdog.
The final build-up to Saturday’s bout has seen both men damp down the animosity that erupted at their face-to-face press conference in Los Angeles in September, when Alvarez took offense at an expletive-laden tirade by Plant and landed a punch that cut the American under his right eye.
– ‘Crossed the line’ –
“He crossed the line and possibly excessive, that’s why it’s individual,” Alvarez said after the scuffle, accusing Plant of insulting his mother.
The Mexican struck a different tone earlier this week, however, insisting he would be his usual calm, calculating self once he climbs throught the ropes on Saturday.
“It’s so various when you remain in the ring, so I do not truly take anything from our run-in at the very first interview,” Alvarez said.
Plant, who brings a 21-0 (12 knockouts) record into Saturday’s fight, insists he had not intended to insult Alvarez’s mother.
The 29-year-old’s own mother, Beth Plant, was shot dead by police after brandishing a knife at officers as she received medical treatment in 2019.
“It wasn’t my intent to get under Canelo’s skin at the very first interview,” Plant said. “I believe the media makes more of it than we do. We have actually both remained in even worse scuffles than that. When the bell rings, it’s totally various.”
The death of Plant’s mother two years ago marked another traumatic chapter in a life touched by tragedy. In 2015, Plant’s 20-month-old daughter Alia, who had been born with a brain abnormality that left her prone to seizures, died after a respiratory infection which developed into pneumonia.
Those experiences have shaped Plant’s journey to Saturday’s showdown and mean he is unfazed by the prospect of facing one of his sport’s most accomplished — and ruthless — practitioners.
“I need to get the job done by any methods essential,” Plant said. “That’s what me and my group have actually done so far to get to this point. Whether it’s boxing or in life, I have actually gotten here by any methods essential.
“I’ve been the underdog before. It’s a place I like to be. I like people rooting against me. It gives me extra motivation, but when you’re fighting for undisputed status, you don’t need much more motivation than that.”
Jobber Wiki author Frank Long contributed to this report.