By: Hans Themistode
Caleb Plant listened to his naysayers doubt his abilities in the ring. Following a super middleweight title reign that lasted two and a half years, Plant walked into his showdown against Canelo Alvarez as a significant underdog.
Yet, despite the ongoing notion that he would be blown away by Alvarez in only a few rounds, Plant experienced significant success. The two tangoed in front of a jam-packed crowd at MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, on November 6th.
In addition to fans and media pundits believing that Plant would be outclassed, Alvarez himself looked Plant square in the eyes during a pre-fight press conference and warned him that he was not “on his level.”
Still, from the moment the opening bell rang, Plant more than held his own. During an explosive sequence in the tenth round, for instance, Plant rattled off a five-punch combination that saw Alvarez visibly frustrated. While the former belt holder would ultimately lose his world title to Alvarez via 11th round stoppage, he’s proud of the gutsy performance he put forth.
“I feel like I went in there and put up a helluva fight,” said Plant during an interview with FightHype.com. “I won a handful of those rounds. Regardless of who you were picking to win, I know I won a handful of those rounds. It could’ve been 6-4 either way, it could’ve been 5-5 but I got clipped. It happens in boxing.”
Although Plant believed he was fighting on even terms with the pound for pound star, the scorecards were slightly more favorable in the direction of Alvarez. Judge Patricia Morse Jarman scored it 96-94 in favor of Alvarez. Dave Moretti and Steve Weisfeld on the other hand, viewed their contest even more lopsidedly in favor of Alvarez, turning in scorecards of 97-93 and 98-92 respectively.
Ultimately, in order to leave the MGM Grand Arena as an undisputed world champion, Plant was in desperate need of a knockout. Although he attempted to up his aggression in the penultimate round, Alvarez made him pay.
With a little more than two minutes remaining in the 11th, Alvarez landed a crushing right hand while Plant was against the ropes. The Mexican star would then follow up his assault with a left uppercut. The force of the blow immediately sent Plant to the canvas for the first time in his career. While he would peel himself up off the deck, the Nashville, Tennessee native crumbled to the canvas again, thanks to the offensive onslaught of Alvarez.
Although Plant was acrimonious with the results, he refuses to allow the first defeat of his career keep him down for long.
“I just got to go back to the drawing board. I’ll lick my wounds and I’ll be back.”
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