LAS VEGAS – As far as David Benavidez is concerned, the beef between him and Caleb Plant ended Saturday night.
Plant and Benavidez embraced in the ring at MGM Grand Garden Arena, where Benavidez apologized to Plant for his hostility and insults both before and after these antagonists agreed to fight in a super middleweight grudge match. Plant appeared to appreciate the sentiments expressed by both Benavidez and his father/trainer, Jose Benavidez Sr.
Plant didn’t attend their post-fight press conference, but Benavidez displayed respect for the former IBF super middleweight champion in the aftermath of the WBC interim champ’s convincing victory in their Showtime Pay-Per-View main event.
“You know, at the end of the day, I don’t wanna hold no grudges against nobody,” Benavidez said. “I’ll only do that [if] we’re building a fight or something. But after that, there’s no need. You know, I’m not that type of guy. I’ve never been that type of guy. So, I have nothing [but] respect for Caleb Plant. And, you know, I’m happy he gets to go home to his family safe.”
The 30-year-old Plant explained in a Tweet late Saturday night that he went to a local hospital as a precautionary measure.
Plant (22-2, 13 KOs) suffered a cut above his right eye, which was caused by an accidental clash of heads in the eighth round. Benavidez battered him during the final few rounds of a 12-round bout Benavidez won comfortably on two scorecards.
Judges Steve Weisfeld (117-111) and Dave Moretti (116-112) credited Phoenix’s Benavidez for a convincing victory. Judge Tim Cheatham scored it closer, 115-113 for Benavidez.
Plant respectfully called Benavidez “the better man tonight” during his post-fight interview with Showtime’s Jim Gray in the ring. Benavidez (27-0, 23 KOs) reciprocated both in the ring and during the press conference.
“I just told him, you know, man to man, I’m sorry for all the trash talk that we [did],” Benavidez said. “We went at each other. We talked a lotta sh!t to each other. A lot of it, I’m not gonna say it wasn’t necessary, because it was necessary, because this fight was huge. You know, it was a huge fight and sometimes that’s what you need to bring the best out of two men. And we’re both warriors. He’s a warrior. You know, he definitely showed it. But I showed it, that I’m the better warrior.
“And I just wanted this opportunity to be challenged by a top super middleweight. You know, he’s definitely top three. You know, I’m top two. The number one is Canelo. So, I mean, we both had a lot to fight for. You know, the winner supposedly is gonna get Canelo. And, you know, so I put everything into this training camp. You know what I mean? And I know he did, too.”
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.
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