Carlos Adames assumes the Jermall Charlo-Juan Macias Montiel fight was more about what Charlo didn’t do than what Montiel accomplished.

The Dominican middleweight contender claimed an overconfident Charlo took Montiel lightly. That’s why, according to Adames, their 12-round middleweight title fight was more competitive than oddsmakers and virtually everyone else expected in June 2021.

The official scorecards didn’t reflect the competitiveness of an entertaining, grueling fight Showtime televised from Toyota Center in Charlo’s hometown of Houston (120-108, 119-109, 118-109).

The undefeated Charlo acknowledged afterward, though, that Montiel made him work harder than anticipated in what was an optional defense of his WBC middleweight championship. Charlo called Montiel “a true warrior” and “a great fighter,” and predicted that the rugged Mexican will win a world title one day.

The champion’s praise notwithstanding, Adames doesn’t think Charlo took Montiel seriously enough.

“I think more than Montiel’s virtues, it was more about Charlo underestimating him,” Adames told through a translator. “Charlo had a lot more room to do things against Montiel, but he got cocky. That’s why the fight got a little more complicated for him. Maybe if he hadn’t underestimated Montiel that much, he would’ve been able to cruise a little more.”

Adames (21-1, 16 KOs), of Comendador, Dominican Republic, and Montiel (23-5-2, 23 KOs), of Los Mochis, Mexico, are scheduled to fight Saturday night for the WBC’s vacant interim middleweight title at Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, California. With so much at stake in their 12-round bout between 28-year-old contenders, Adames, who is ranked number one by the WBC, has taken the opposite approach to the sixth-ranked Montiel than the game plan he feels cost Charlo (32-0, 22 KOs) in their fight.

“I’m not about to make the same mistake,” Adames said. “I don’t underestimate anybody. No matter what last name they have, I approach everybody the same way, with the same seriousness. And I can tell you it’s gonna be a good fight between two guys who are gonna come out to give it all to win. And, you know, I think this is a big challenge for me to prove that I belong up there with the best.”

Showtime will air Adames-Montiel as the co-feature before a 12-round main event in which unbeaten Sebastian Fundora (19-0-1, 13 KOs), of Coachella, California, and Mexico’s Carlos Ocampo (34-1, 22 KOs) will fight for Fundora’s WBC interim super welterweight title. In the opener of Showtime’s three-bout broadcast (10 p.m. ET; 7 p.m. PT), Argentina’s Fernando Martinez (14-0, 8 KOs) and the Philippines’ Jerwin Ancajas (33-2-2, 22 KOs) will meet in a 12-round rematch of a 12-rounder Martinez won by unanimous decision to take the IBF junior bantamweight championship from Ancajas on February 26 at The Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas.

Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.