It’s fair to say former multi-weight champion and all-time great James Toney is no fan of Mexican star Canelo Alvarez. Asked recently why the advice he gave to Caleb Plant ahead of Plant’s fight with Canelo didn’t work, Toney said it was because Plant “didn’t listen.” Speaking with FightHype, Toney then spoke about what would have happened had HE fought Canelo.
As we Toney fans and admirers know, Toney was great at middleweight, at super middleweight, even at cruiserweight. What then would have happened had Toney fought Canelo? The king of the trash-talkers (still, though it can be tough listening to Toney speak these days) has no doubt.
“I was telling him [Plant] how to fight the red-headed guy. If he’d done what I told him to do he’d have beat him easy,” Toney said when speaking about how he gave Plant some tips going into the November 2021 fight. “Canelo, he fights one way. Everybody thinks he’s a diamond. He’s not. He’s garbage. Canelo couldn’t even carry my gym shoes. I would knock him out. Everybody always talking, ‘How would you and Canelo end up?’ I’m like, why would you ask me that dumb ass question! We already know the answer – I’m knocking his ass out. It’s a mismatch. If Canelo came to fight me, he’d get f****d up. It’d be like Duran when he got knocked out by Tommy [Hearns] Or how Tommy dealt with Pipino Cuevas. Same way. I’m being real with ya.”
The so-called “Dream Fight” debate has gotten old in the opinion of plenty of fans, yet some mythical match ups can still get a boxing fan wondering. Toney against Canelo, at either 160, 168, or higher, is one such Dream Fight. The Toney who defeated the likes of Michael Nunn, Iran Barkley, Mike McCallum, and others would have been sheer hell for the prime Canelo. On this surely all fans agree?
In terms of who wins the upcoming, potential FOTY between Plant and David Benavidez, Toney said that Plant wins “if he goes out and boxes him.” If not, if Benavidez “gets off with some good shots,” it could be a different story.
“If Caleb Plant boxes him and stays away, he’s gonna be all right. If he don’t, he will get caught in the danger zone,” Toney said of the upcoming fight in March.
Like the rest of us, Toney seems to see Plant-Benavidez as pretty much a 50 50 fight.