Caleb Plant won’t beat Canelo Alvarez says Truax

By Boxing News - 02/01/2021 - Comments

By Sean Jones: Caleb Truax says Canelo Alvarez is too advanced for the still green IBF super middleweight champion Caleb ‘Sweethands’ Plant at this early stage of his career.

Plant, 28, could be facing WBA/WBC 168lb champ Alvarez (54-1-2, 36 KOs) in September on the Mexican Independence Day holiday weekend.

If Alvarez wins his next two fights against Avni Yildirim and Billy Joe Saunders for him to possibly battle Plant for the undisputed super middleweight championship in eight months from now.

The unenthusiastic way that Plant responded to questions about him potentially taking an interim fight before the Canelo match, it’s not expected that he’ll fight again until September.

Plant will wait for his payday fight against Canelo rather than stick his neck out by fighting David Benavidez like fans want him to.

There’s too much risk for Plant, and the fans would want him to face someone good for a change like David Benavidez or David Morrell. Those guys would be dangerous for Plant.

Plant (21-0, 12 KOs) was good enough to beat the former IBF champion Truax (31-5-2, 19 KOs) by a dominating 12-round unanimous decision last Saturday night on FOX from the Shrine Exposition Center, Los Angeles.

Truax says Plant not ready for Canelo

“It didn’t go the way I wanted to, that’s for sure, but you got to give him his props. He’s a quick fighter, he’s a good boxer, and he’s got a hell of a jab,” said Caleb Truax to Fighthub on his loss to Plant.

Image: Caleb Plant won't beat Canelo Alvarez says Truax

“He’s probably got the best jab that I’ve faced. Power, he didn’t have much power at all. He’s a good fighter.

“I think he needs more time to take on the likes of Canelo, but he’s a hell of a fighter. And I wouldn’t pick him to beat Canelo right now.

“I wouldn’t pick anybody to beat Canelo right now. So that’s not saying anything negative on him, but he’s [Plant] only had 21 fights.

“He’s got plenty of time to develop, and he seems to be getting better. So he should take his time,” Truax said of the 28-year-old Plant.

The lack of punching power that Plant exhibited is likely why Truax is saying that he’s not ready for Canelo. Plant would be a better puncher if he committed to his shots, but he doesn’t do that.

When Plant throws power shots, he’s already got his back leg ready to retreat immediately. He never fully commits to his shots.

Even when Plant throws flurries, he doesn’t’ have his feet lanted firmly on the ground. He’s on his toes throwing the punches, and that takes away from his power.

Truax might be giving Plant too much credit by suggesting that he’s going to develop enough for him to take on Canelo later in a more competitive fight. This might be as good as it gets for Plant.

He’s 28-years-old, and if he doesn’t possess the talent to beat Canelo now, he never will.

What really is holding Plant back is the weak opposition that he’s been consistently facing since he turned professional in 2014.

Plant’s management has been scheduling him like he’s fragile and might break to pieces if put in with a quality fighter.

They should have been putting Plant in with quality fighters all along for him to improve.

In taking a glance at Plant’s resume, it’s clear that he’s been matched in a strategic way to make sure that he wouldn’t get beat.

Obviously, it’s worked as Plant is a world champion after winning an ugly decision against Jose Uzcategui two years ago in 2019.

But he’s not improved, and he’s not shown the kind of talent that suggests that he’ll even be competitive against a fighter like Canelo Alvarez.

At this point, Plant loses to not only Canelo but also these fighters:

  • David Benavidez
  • Daniel Jacobs
  • Bektemir Melikuziev
  • Callum Smith
  • Billy Joe Saunders
  • Zach Parker
  • Juergen Braehmer
  • Gabe Rosado
  • Aidos Yerbossynuly
  • David Lemieux
  • Carlos Gongora
  • Anthony Dirrell
  • Jose Uzcategui
  • Edgar Berlanga

If you wonder why Canelo is eager to try and become the undisputed 168-lb champion, it’s because the division is weak as water.

If the Artur Beterbiev and Dmitry Bivol moved down from 175 to 168 to hold titles, Canelo would want nothing to do with trying to become the undisputed champion.

Canelo is strategic in how he goes after his opponents, which puts him in the same boat as Plant.

The fact that Canelo wants to fight Plant so badly tells you all you need to know about who will win that fight. Canelo wouldn’t want to face Plant if he didn’t know in his mind that he can beat him at 100% certainty.

Plant has the best jab of anyone Truax has faced

“He was just able to keep me at bay the whole fight, and it didn’t go my way,” Plant said. “I wanted to push the pace and put pressure on him, but credit to him.

Image: Caleb Plant won't beat Canelo Alvarez says Truax

“He was able to keep the distance with his jab and make it tough for me to get close to him to work the body and get inside the way I wanted to.

“I was trying to land the right hand over the top of his shoulder when he rolled.

“I landed a couple of nice ones, but it was just too few and far between, mainly because of his foot positioning and his movement. He was able to get away from me and slip out the back door.

“I knew he was a quick fighter, and I knew he was a good defensive fighter, slick. But he’s a little bit slicker and a little bit more looser than I thought.

“He’s got a better jab than all of them, I think,” said Truax when asked how he compares Plant to his past opponents like James DeGale and Anthony Dirrell.

Plant does have an excellent jab and maybe the best in the division. It’s not the most powerful jab, but he’s good at repeatedly throwing like a Tommy-Gun machinegun, and he’s able to throw it while circling his opponents.

With a jab like Plant, he’s capable of beating a lot of the mid-level contenders. But he’s going to need a lot more than that for him to beat Canelo or Benavidez.

It’s not even worth mentioning Benavidez, though, as a future opponent for Plant because the only way he’s going to get a fight against him is if the IBF oders it

Truax won’t retire yet

“I’m not sure,” Truax said when asked ‘where does he go from here?’ “I still feel like I got some left in me, and keep on going forward. I just went the distance with a guy in his prime, and he’s a good fighter.

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“I’m going to talk to my girlfriend and my family and see what I think I should do. I don’t want to make any knee-jerk decisions,” said Truax.

Caleb Truax needs to decide what his goals are for sticking around in the sport. If he’s hoping that he’ll get lucky and pick up a paper title against another aging veteran like he did in 2017 when he beat James DeGale, he’s kidding himself.

At best, Truax might get a payday or two as the B-side opponent for one of the young contenders, but that’s about it. His days of fighting for world titles are likely over with.