By: Sean Crose
Former super middleweight world titlist Caleb Plant felt he had a lot to prove on Saturday night at the Barclay’s Center in Brooklyn. First, he had to prove to the world that he was still a top divisional player after being brutally beaten into defeat by the legendary Canelo Alvarez in 2021. Yet Plant also wanted to prove that his opponent this weekend, former two time world titlist Anthony Dirrell, didn’t have the bite to back up his bark. These were two men who simply didn’t like each other and weren’t afraid to tell the world exactly how they felt.
Plant let his bad intentions be known right off the bat as he aggressively went at his man at the sound of the bell. After that, however, Plant fought smart. Dirrell was aggressive throughout the bout, no doubt, but Plant was able to keep his nemesis at bay by engaging in an intelligent strategy that largely kept Dirrell from doing damage while effectively landing shots of his own. Dirrell kept things moving by fighting tough, but it wasn’t enough. By the second half of the fight it was clear that Plant was well on his way to winning a decision. Plant, however, appeared to have other plans.
For an absolutely crushing left from the Tennessean sent Dirrell down and completely out in the ninth. The referee didn’t even bother to count Dirrell out because he didn’t have to. It was more important at that point for doctors to take a look at the laid out Dirrell. As for Plant, he celebrated in an unbecoming manner by acting as if he was digging dirt into a grave. It was knockout of the year material, but fighters don’t always have to leave the idea of sportsmanship behind. Plant had already proven his point. Still, boxing is a physical, and taxing, sport, something that was clearly in evidence Saturday evening in Brooklyn.
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