Canelo Alvarez ready for the most personal fight of his career


Cash cows are generally treated like sacred cows in boxing, which makes it remarkable how Caleb Plant addressed Canelo Álvarez.

Plant called him a drug cheater.

The accusation led to a show of hands slapping at a press conference in Beverly Hills six weeks ago, with lingering animosity as to why organizers prevented fighters from coming face to face during their weigh-in on Friday afternoon.

Deprived of a chance to push Plant again ahead of their 168-pound league game the next day, Álvarez was content to warn his opponent by paraphrasing Newton’s Third Law of Motion in his second language.

“For each action, [there’s] a reaction, ”the 31-year-old Mexican said in English.

Álvarez said he started the crash in Beverly Hills because Plant insulted his mother when they were nose to nose but, in fact, the relatively unknown challenger had already thrown a grenade at him in cyberspace.

In late August, a few weeks after Álvarez and Plant agreed to fight, 130-pound champion Óscar Valdez tested positive for a stimulant. Álvarez and Valdez are teammates at a gym run by coach Eddy Reynoso.

Plant posted a message on his Twitter account that read in part, “Everyone is suspicious,” followed by a raised middle finger emoji. Plant also spoke about how lvarez tested positive for the growth-promoting substance clenbuterol and claimed he ingested the banned substance while eating contaminated meat.

For what it’s worth, the World Anti-Doping Agency has concluded that an athlete can test positive for clenbuterol at low levels after consuming contaminated meat.

It doesn’t matter to Plant. It also didn’t matter to him that the Plant team included Victor Conte, a convicted steroid distributor.

And shortly after Álvarez and Plant approached at their September press conference in Beverly Hills, Álvarez pushed Plant onto the stage.

Plant continued his attack.

“He’s a cheater,” Plant said.

Canelo Álvarez, left, pushes Caleb Plant during a press conference in Beverly Hills on September 21.

(Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press)

He continued, “Was he suspended for six months? So you don’t have to ask me. This is not to be discussed. I am not making this up. I don’t want it to be in our sport. That’s not what I said. That is what the commission said.

Reynoso retaliated by calling Plant a homosexual insult in Spanish. The coach went on to say that instead of talking, Plant should work hard and win fights.

“I have the balls to work hard without testing positive [for] illegal substances, ”Plant replied. “Why don’t you have the courage to work hard without testing positive for illegal substances? “

Álvarez lost it.

“Shut up, fuck! Lvarez shouted in English.

“Or what?” Plante asked.

“You will see on November 6,” said lvarez.

The exchange generated buzz for a fight that would otherwise have struggled to attract viewers. The factory is a 10 to 1 outsider.

Álvarez denied that the brawl was a ploy to sell the fight.

“I don’t like to do things like that to heat up a fight,” Lvarez said in Spanish. “I’m not like that.”

Álvarez said of Plant: “I think he’s an insecure person. That’s why he wants to start making excuses before the fight.

Fighters as popular as Alvarez are generally immune to the types of criticism triggered by Plant.

Directly or indirectly, raffles like Álvarez generate income for everyone involved in the sport. Potential naysayers are particularly aware of this, knowing that angering a star could cause them to refuse to grant them a lucrative fight.

This imbalance of economic power is the reason why Floyd Mayweather Jr. was not called out by opponents for pleading guilty to domestic violence for which he was jailed for 90 days.

A fight against Mayweather was worth millions of dollars. There was value in the silence.

Gennady Golovkin remembered it. Golovkin and Lvarez fought for a draw in September 2017 and scheduled a rematch for May of the following year. The second bout was delayed due to Álvarez’s failed drug test and subsequent suspension.

The rematch was eventually rescheduled for September 2018. In preparation for the fight, Golovkin and then-coach Abel Sanchez made statements about Álvarez that were similar to Plant’s. Álvarez was furious. And when Álvarez got a narrow decision, he refused to grant Golovkin a third fight, even though he didn’t feel the series produced a clear winner. Golovkin hasn’t been involved in a major promotion since then.

By mentioning Álvarez’s controversial story, Plant bet on himself.

“I think most guys are fighting him thinking they’re going to lose already,” Plant said.

Plant obviously does not share this feeling of fatalism. Álvarez called the upcoming fight the most personal of his career. If he didn’t give Golovkin a third fight – a third fight the public wanted – he probably won’t grant Plant a rematch unless Plant somehow defeats him.

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