Jermall Charlo won’t be fighting David Benavidez, staying at 160 for another year

By Boxing News - 03/20/2021 - Comments

By Allan Fox: Trainer Ronnie Shields says Jermall Charlo WON’T be moving up to 168 to take on the belt-less David Benavidez anytime soon. This is bad news for boxing fans, as they were hoping Charlo would move up to super middleweight to face Benavidez.

Charlo told Brian Custer this week on his Last Stand podcast that he’s ready to face Benavidez and knock him out within six rounds.

But now, unfortunately, Shields says that’s not happening. Jermall will be staying at 160 for another year to continue to defend his WBC title.

Shields says the unbeaten Charlo (31-0, 22 KOs) doesn’t need to move up to super middleweight for another year because there are still guys for him to defend his WBC 160-lb title against.

Ronnie doesn’t say who these guys are that Charlo can still fight at middleweight, unfortunately. Jermall can’t get fights against Demetrius Andrade, Gennady Golovkin, or Ryota Murata. Once you remove them from the equation, the 160-lb division is empty.

As far as Shields is concerned, former two-time WBC 168-lb champion Benavidez (24-0, 21 KOs) brings nothing to the table for Charlo due to him not having a belt.

Shields says that when Jermall does move up to 168 eventually, the fighter that they want is Canelo Alvarez. He sees that as a great match-up that boxing fans will pay to see. What Shields doesn’t realize is Charlo needs a win over Benavidez or Golovkin to put pressure on Canelo to get a fight against him.

Shields is open to Charlo facing Benavidez, though, as long as he’s willing to come down to 160. With Benavidez barely able to make 168, he’s not physically able to drain down to 160 to face Charlo.

Shields rules out Charlo fighting Benavidez

“Right now, it’s all talk, fighters are going to do that. They want to fight everybody,” said trainer Ronnie Shields to Fino Boxing in reacting to Jermall Charlo saying that he’s interested in facing David Benavidez.

Image: Jermall Charlo won't be fighting David Benavidez, staying at 160 for another year

“If you’re being realistic, I don’t see the fight happening anytime soon. Benavidez doesn’t bring anything to the table right now.

“He doesn’t have a belt. If he had a belt, it would be easy for Jermall to move up to fight him at 168. If he wants to come down to 160 to fight, no problem,” said Shields.

And if Shields is only interested in Charlo fighting guys with belts, why did he recently fight Dennis Hogan, Sergiy Derevyanchenko, and Brandon Adams? None of those fighters had titles, and Charlo still fought them.

Obviously, it doesn’t make sense for Shields to be ruling out Benavidez as an opponent for Charlo based on him not holding a world title. I mean, Jermalls last five fights have been against opposition that DIDN’T hold a belt.

For Jermall’s sake, he needs to be proactive about his career and not listen to his trainer Shields when making moves.

At 31, Charlo is too old to be ducking guys because he’s clearly not going to get the fight with Canelo based on the guys he’s been fighting. You can argue that Jermall’s situation is dire when it comes to getting a fight against Canelo because he’s being ignored, and for a good reason.

Charlo isn’t fighting anyone good enough for Canelo to be forced to pay attention to him. Moreover, Charlo needs to move up to 168 because he can’t pressure Canelo to fight him when he’s still at 160.

It sounds like Shields wants to keep Charlo safe, fighting the lesser opposition that he’s been feasting on since he moved up to 160 in 2017.

What seems obvious is that Charlo is comfortable milking his WBC 160-lb title on Showtime against opposition that isn’t a threat to beating him.

While the money isn’t huge compared to what Charlo would get fighting Benavidez or Alvarez, there’s less risk, and the paydays come twice a year.

Jermall to stay at 160 for another year

“I think he [Jermall] can keep the weight for probably another year, and eventually he’s going to have to move up,” Shields said about Charlo staying at 160 for another year.

Image: Jermall Charlo won't be fighting David Benavidez, staying at 160 for another year

“There’s not much left for him at 160, but he still has some more partners that he has to take care of business with, and then he’s definitely going to go up,” said Shields.

Interestingly, Shields isn’t mentioning who the “partners” are that Jermall can fight at 160, keeping him from going up to 168 to take on Benavidez.

#5 WBC Juan Macias Montiel (22-4-2, 22 KOs) is mentioned as Charlo’s likely next opponent. This is another easy fight for Jermall, similar to his title defenses gained flawed opposition.

Montiel was knocked out in two rounds by Jaime Munguia in 2017, and he has a recent draw against Hugo Centeno.

Other options for Jermall if he stays at 160:

  • Jaime Munguia
  • Sergey Derevyanchenko – rematch
  • Juan Macias Montiel
  • Zhanibek Alimkhanuly
  • Esquivia Falcao
  • Matteo Signani

Munguia isn’t likely to fight Jermall, and there would be zero interest from Showtime in seeing Charlo fight Derevyancyenko again. The other fighters like Montiel are unknowns and not pay-per-view.

The impression some boxing fans have about Jermall is he’s just interested in milking his WBC middleweight title against weak opposition for as long as possible.

What we’ll likely see is Jermall being packaged with his brother Jermell Charlo in pay-per-view cards on Showtime in which both guys are matched against beatable opposition like we saw last September.

If a fight against Canelo falls into Jermall’s lap, he’ll take it, but he’s not going to go out and take risks with his career against guys like Benavidez actually to earn the fight.

As big as Charlo is now, he should have been fighting at 168 three years ago because he’s huge for the 160-lb division.

Yeah, Charlo can probably continue to boil down to fight at 160 for another year, as Shields points out, but there’s no one for him to fight.

Canelo is the target for Charlo at 168

“The biggest match-up is Canelo,” said Shields when asked who he wants Jermall to fight when he eventually moves up to 168.

“Canelo, to me, is the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world, and I think his style matches up perfectly with Jermall’s. I think that makes for an exciting fight, and I think that’s what fans really want to see.

“And I think that’ll be the number one fight [for Charlo] that I would like to see. I think it would be a great fight [Canelo vs. Jermall]. It would be a fan-friendly fight, and that’s what fans pay to see.

“They want to see really good fights, and I think in this fight, it would be. I mean, I think it would be terrific, actually.

“And I think it will be, and I think the fans really want to see that. I do consider Canelo pound-for-pound #1, but I think Jermall Charlo can beat him.

“He’s really special,” Shields said of Charlo. “He has a good powerful jab. That’s probably the #1 thing he has along with the combinations he throws behind it.

“That makes for a recipe for a good fight on the other end of the guy on the receiving end of that.

“Canelo is a good strong fighter, and he has a good jab also. When he ripes combinations, he looks really good. So it’s like thunder vs. thunder. You put that together and you get lightning,” said Shields.

It’s unlikely that Jermall will get the fight with Canelo if he moves up to 168 in a year and continues to follow along the same career-pattern of facing soft opposition.

By the time Charlo does move up to 168 in 2022 or 2023, Canelo will have vacated his titles and will be picking and choosing the guys he wants to fight.

Charlo won’t be high on his list because he fights on another network, and he hasn’t fought talented enough opposition to increase his popularity.