Nothing Caleb Plant witnessed Saturday night makes him feel any less confident about beating Canelo Alvarez.
Plant gave Alvarez credit for stopping Billy Joe Saunders, but the unbeaten IBF super middleweight champion noticed flaws in the Mexican superstar. Plant discussed Alvarez’s performance versus Saunders during the most recent episode of “The PBC Podcast,” which debuted Thursday on www.premierboxingchampions.com.
“I seen things I feel like I can take advantage of and some mistakes, or just some weak spots that I feel I can capitalize on,” Plant told co-hosts Kenneth Bouhairie and Michael Rosenthal. “And, you know, here soon, when we get that fight signed … I can show y’all in person.”
Plant expects to battle Alvarez next in what would be a full title unification fight in the 168-pound division. Alvarez made it clear after stopping Saunders following eight rounds at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, that Plant is the only opponent that he is interested in boxing next.
Assuming they meet September 18, they’ll fight for Alvarez’s WBA, WBC and WBO belts, as well as Plant’s IBF title.
The 30-year-old Alvarez is most commonly considered the best boxer, pound-for-pound, in the sport. The 28-year-old Plant respects Alvarez’s accomplishments, but the Ashland City, Tennessee, native believes he is better than the four-division champion in numerous areas.
“I know Canelo,” Plant said. “He’s a good fighter, but, you know, at the end of the day, like I said, I feel like I’m the better fighter. I feel like that I have more attributes. I know he has a lot of experience. But sometimes experience can be overrated. And I feel like I got the heart and the mind, the skills and just the full package to, you know, go in there and do what has to be done.”
Plant (21-0, 12 KOs) has made three defenses of the IBF 168-pound championship since winning it from Venezuela’s Jose Uzcategui (30-4, 25 KOs) in January 2019. He has faced a much lower level of opposition, however, than Alvarez (56-1-2, 38 KOs).
Alvarez was ahead on all three scorecards – 78-74, 78-74 and 77-75 – when Saunders’ trainer, Mark Tibbs, told referee Mark Calo-oy that his fighter wouldn’t leave his corner to start the ninth round. The 31-year-old Saunders suffered multiple fractures to the orbital bone around his right eye in the eighth round, when Alvarez landed a damaging right uppercut.
Saunders (31-1, 14 KOs) underwent surgery Sunday and since has returned home to England.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.