Abel Sanchez is picking David Benavidez to beat former IBF super middleweight champion Caleb ‘Sweethands’ Plant when the two meet up in early next year in hopes of the winner getting a Canelo Alvarez fight.
While Sanchez believes Plant (22-1, 13 KOs) is a highly skilled fighter, he’s not talented enough to deal with the bigger, stronger, and younger 25-year-old Benavidez’s offensive arsenal.
Plant fell apart against Canelo Alvarez last year in November, getting worn down and stopped in the eleventh round. Benavidez is arguably on another level of Canelo at this point in his career and will be a nightmare for the 30-year-old Plant, who is coming off an impressive ninth round knockout win over Anthony Dirrell on October 15th.
Plant’s victory is likely what gave him the confidence to take the fight with Benavidez because, without his devasting one-punch knockout victory over 37-year-old Dirrell, he probably wouldn’t have agreed to take this match-up.
Plant wants a rematch with Canelo, and he knows that without a huge victory over Benavidez or Jermall Charlo, he has no chance of getting another shot against the Mexican star.
“That’s a good fight. That’s a very, very good fight. Caleb is skilled, but he’s not good enough to beat Benavidez,” said trainer Abel Sanchez to Fight Hub TV when asked about his thoughts on the Caleb Plant vs. David Benavidez fight that will be taking place in early 2023.
“David Benavidez has a better arsenal; he’s younger, he’s still undefeated, and has all the credentials to fight those kinds of fights. I think he is, other than Bivol, the cream of the crop in those weights.
“You can say that, but you can also say that’s why maybe the reason he hasn’t shined,” said Sanchez about Benavidez not having as good a resume as Plant.
“It seems to me that when Benavidez has someone in front of him, he looks like a million dollars. When he doesn’t have someone in front of him, he loses interest.
“He goes back to what his brother used to do, sitting on the ropes and not doing the things that he needs to do, but he’s an extreme talent. Like I said, I think he beats everybody but Bivol.
“I’ve always said that he would be the toughest fight for Canelo. I still say that. So it’s Bivol, Canelo and Benavidez at the top. We can hope for that, but it’s up to Canelo,” said Sanchez when asked if the Plant vs. Benavidez fight should get a fight against Canelo.
“That’s what he’s saying right now. Let’s see it happen,” said Sanchez reacting to what Eddie Hearn said on Saturday night about Benavidez being in a good position to face Canelo if he defeats Plant.
“Benavidez is probably the young lion right now in those divisions. He’s only 25, 26 years old, so anyone that fights him has nothing to gain, and Benavidez has everything to gain.
“So if Caleb Plant does well against Benavidez, yeah, he deserves a shot [against Canelo] because those guys that are fighting regularly, those guys who are putting their record on the line, those guys who are putting their livelihood on the line, deserve those kinds of fights.
“If the Charlos were able to do that also, then they would deserve those kinds of fights. The guys that are busy, in my opinion, should be getting those kinds of fights,” said Sanchez.