Can Caleb Plant beat Canelo Alvarez?

By Boxing News - 11/01/2021 - Comments

By Gerardo Granados: As the reader already must know, this Saturday, November 6th at the MGM Grand, Grand Garden Arena at the boxing Mecca in Las Vegas; the undefeated IBF belt holder Caleb Plant, will challenge the man to beat at the super middleweight division, WBC – WBA – WBO Champion Saul Canelo Alvarez, to try to become the undisputed 168 pounds Champion.

A couple of weeks ago, there was an intense face-off, in which Alvarez lost his composure and first pushed off and then retaliated a slap, punching Plant, who was wearing glasses. A cut resulted in Plant’s cheek, but the cut was not severe enough to postpone the fight.

It seems to me that Canelo has become a bit too cocky and arrogant in the last year or so. This is not the first time he portrays himself as he really is. When Demetrius Andrade showed up to his post-fight press conference against Jo Saunders, Canelo didn’t appreciate him crashing his press conference, and he let him know it.

At the TV show, ALL ACCESS episodes showed previous big fights; they (the producers) keep on repeating endlessly the same script, showing off lots of money and luxury, and also getting too sentimental involving family. Maybe some boxing fans do like it, but I don’t think that it is the proper way to hype a “fight.” I must confess that it wasn’t that bad, but I played it forward when Canelo spoke, or they got sentimental. I’ll just leave it to the reader to decide whether if you like it or not.

Image: Can Caleb Plant beat Canelo Alvarez?

I asked a friend if he thinks that Plant has an excellent chance to beat Canelo, he replied to me saying that he expects an Alvarez’s victory by an over right-hand knockout. He thinks that Caleb is at a level below and that Saul is far superior. So I placed a bet on him, but I asked for a handicap. I didn’t want to get robbed by one of those weird or unexplainable judge decisions, so I asked that as gentlemen’s, that if we both saw Plant clearly win on points, even if the scorecards stated otherwise, he would pay the bet to me. My friend placed his bet on Alvarez to win by stoppage, be it KO, TKO, doctor-corner stops the bout, or Plants quits. I bet on Plant winning by Decision.

The betting odds are way off; I don’t see a -1100 Canelo or +600 Plant. No way! I mean, Plant is a quality boxer; he is not a Yildrim level type of guy.

Let me be clear, I do believe that Plant is the underdog going into the fight, but he is a live dog. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t hate Canelo or am a Plant fanboy. Please let me explain myself before you skip reading this article.

Caleb Plant is a hungry lion; he is 29 years old, has a good amateur pedigree, and also has a height and reach advantage over Alvarez. Plant has the right tools to trouble Canelo; yes, he does have the tools. Caleb has a good jab, hand speed, reflexes, footwork, defensive skills, punching power, ring smarts – IQ, and also the fighting style that in the past have caused trouble to Alvarez.

The reader must remember how Erislandy Lara and Daniel Jacobs had success against him. Even Amir Khan’s hand speed troubled Alvarez. Yeah, Canelo murdered him, but it was a mismatch, and still, Khan had no trouble landing on him. Can you believe that Canelo got a draw score against Floyd Mayweather? C’mon! Alvarez looks impressive against stationary – flat-footed fighters, but not so much against slick boxers.

Image: Can Caleb Plant beat Canelo Alvarez?

Not only that, but Plant also is a highly motivated and determined son of boxing, which makes him even more dangerous to beat. I simply cannot see him quitting against Alvarez. Caleb is in a win-win situation, as he has literally nothing to lose and everything to win. So, all the pressure is on Canelo’s team.

It was a surprise to see Andre Ward visiting Plant to give him some advice. I think it was last year that I saw James Toney visiting him also. But, I do question Plant’s quality of opposition, as it is not impressive at all. Also, I am not confident in his chin because he has never faced a fierce puncher like Canelo. I also wonder if he does have enough punch power to force Canelo to respect him.

I see this fight as when many years ago, we got to see an experienced, proven World Champion defending his crown against an upcoming, talented Mandatory Challenger. Being Canelo the Champion and Plant the Mandatory Challenger, of whom, we were not sure of his capabilities until he faced and beat the Champion.

I have no problem with Canelo’s new personality at all; in fact, I enjoy seeing him being outspoken, letting fight fans see him as he really is. I do question his resume filled with names but not that much quality. Alvarez’s work ethic is formidable; he always stays in shape, trains hard, and boxing wise keeps on getting better. He is a quality boxer who possesses great ring smarts – IQ, punch power, and chin, but he is not my number one pound for pound, not even makes it in the first five for me.

If the IBF strap is at stake, then that should mean that the IBF rules would apply and that the ten pounds rehydration limit would be enforced. But as far as I can remember, that rule doesn’t apply anymore at unification bouts.

I think Canelo might be a little overconfident this time around. Let us not forget that in prizefighting, the boxing gods have never shown mercy on anyone, and once in a while, a young lion shows up to slay the old lion king. Styles make fights, they say, and this time the challenger has the proper style to beat the champ.

I believe Caleb Plant can do it, but what about the reader? Can Plant beat Canelo?