Canelo Alvarez could be doomed to taste defeat if he faces IBF super middleweight champion Caleb Plant or Jermall Charlo, according to Mayweather Promotions CEO Leonard Ellerbe.
In Ellerbe’s view, Plant (20-0, 12 KOs) and Charlo (31-0, 22 KOs) are “all wrong for Alvarez (54-1-2, 36 KOs).
Canelo is off the hook as far a Jermall goes, though, as he’s still fighting at 160, and he doesn’t figure into the immediate future for the Mexican superstar.
Plant, 28, is someone that Canelo will need to tangle with at some point in 2021 if he continues with his goal of becoming the undisputed super middleweight champion .
It’s a worthy goal that Canelo has, but it’s one that won’t bring the kind of attention to him that he might think it will.
50 years ago, the ultra-hardcore boxing fan that existed in the 1960s and the 1950s would be impressed if a fighter like Canelo were to unify a weight class.
In this age, with the sanctioning bodies having polluted each weight class with world titles, it’s no longer a big deal for a fighter to capture a belt.
“I hope that fight gets made because Caleb Plant is a very, very good fighter,” said Ellerbe to Fighthype about Canelo potentially fighting Plant in May or September.
“He just hasn’t had the opportunities of a Canelo. His [Plant] style is all wrong for Canelo. Jermall, too, all wrong. I hope both of them get that fight.
“[David] Benavidez’s style would be more; they would match-up really well,” said Ellerbe about Benavidez’s style being better for Canelo. “All the fights would be good, but Caleb is a thinking fighter. He’s very slick, very sharp, and great reflexes.
“Jermall, great athleticism, tremendous skills, tough as nails, can do it all. His style is all wrong for him,” said Ellerbe in continuing to believe that Charlo is too talented for Canelo.
“That’s not something, regardless of what others say, that those are the fights that they’re looking for,” Ellerbe said in making it clear that Canelo’s team aren’t looking for fights against talented guys like Jermall and Plant.
Canelo could wind up regretting that he chose to try and unify the 168lb division. He likely saw weakness among the champions at super middleweight, so he shot off in that direction to become the undisputed champion the easy way.
What would do more for Canelo’s career is if he stayed at 175 and if he’d taken on IBF/WBC light heavyweight champion Artur Beterbiev and WBA champ Dimitry Bivol.
The speed with which Canelo vacated his WBO 175lb title after he beat the past his prime Sergey Kovalev suggests that he realized his limitations, and he didn’t want to take the chance of being knocked out by Beterbiev and or schooled by Bivol.
Obviously, Canelo would gain a heck of a lot more respect if he at least tried to become the undisputed champion at 175 rather than moving back down to 168 to go after the flawed champions.
“No, no, no. Caleb Plant is a different animal,” said Ellerbe when told that Canelo has improved since his controversial 12 round split decision win over Erislandy Lara in 2014.
“He’s a bigger version, he has great skills, reflexes, and he’s a thinking fighter. I don’t want to say all this and give it all.
“Again, that’s how you deal with a fighter like Canelo. It takes certain attributes. In my opinion, those are the two guys [Jermall and Plant] that beats him.
“Caleb Plant is a sharpshooter. So he doesn’t have to clip him [Canelo]. He can outbox him. Caleb Plant is a very, very good boxer.
Plant has a lot of talent, and he could beat Canelo. He’s going to probably need to knock Canelo out to make sure he doesn’t suffer the same fate that Lara, Austin Trout, and Gennadiy Golovkin suffered in losing to him by a controversial decision.
“In Jermall’s case, he can do it all,” said Ellerbe. “He’s a thinking fighter too.
“He’s extremely athletic, gifted; he can punch, solid defense. Jermall can do it all. Canelo just has a little more experience. He’s been in bigger fights.
“But there are things that you can do to offset those kinds of things. Canelo is a tremendous fighter; he has a lot of experience in big fights.
“He’s gotten better, better, and better. He’s on cruise control right now,” said Ellerbe about Canelo.
The fans aren’t interested when fights are promoted using the angle of a match being for a world title or an undisputed championship. Look, Terence Crawford.
He unified the 140 lb division several years ago, and the boxing fans didn’t are. Moreover, Crawford still doesn’t have a large fan base, which tells you that becoming an undisputed champion doesn’t increase your popularity.
“No,” said Ellerbe when asked if Canelo is the #1 pound-for-pound fighter in boxing. “Taking nothing away from Callum Smith.
“He’s a very good fighter, a world champ, and he did exactly what he was supposed to do, but the pound-for-pound, that in my opinion.
“But I’m one that puts nothing into that because it’s all subjective. You have media favorites. All these fighters can fight.
“How do you pick and say, ‘This guy, this guy, and this guy.’ Right now, there’s no doubt that Tank should be in the pound-for-pound whatever.
But he’s not because somebody else says [he doesn’t belong in the top 10.’ That s*** doesn’t mean anything to us.
“Tank is going to be pound-for-pound in the Box Office, and he’s going to have a pound-for-pound bank account. I can’t believe it either,” said Ellerbe about Jermall Charlo not being on the pound-for-pound list.
‘Again, Jermall can fight his a** off, and he’s proven it. It’s all subjective, and a lot of the media members, a lot of the fans, they don’t like that person or that person.
“It’s all bull s****. The fighters need to fight the biggest possible fights that they can. They need to do it in their prime, champs vs. other champions, and they all need to make a lot of money.
“That’s the way I see it. All the other stuff is subjective. ‘This guy is better than this guy.’ He’s got to get in the ring and prove it, especially if they’re around the same weight class,” said Ellerbe.