David Benavidez thinks Caleb Plant’s tendency to fade late in fights and his lack of power will cost him in a potential fight against boxing kingpin Canelo Alvarez.
Plant and Alvarez are reportedly in the preliminary stages of hashing out a deal to fight in September, which would be for all four belts in the super middleweight division. Alvarez owns the WBC, WBO, and WBA titles, while Plant owns the IBF version.
Benavidez, 24, thinks that the only way to keep Alvarez (56-1-2, 38 KOs) honest inside the boxing ring is to push him back with hard shots – something that the Arizonan thinks is not within Plant’s constitution. Benavidez, on the other hand, is well-known for delivering big blows and breaking down his opponents.
“I think the only thing that hurts [Plant] is that he doesn’t have punching power,” Benavidez said on the BoxHard Podcast. “It’s easy to stop a guy [Plant’s previous opponent Vincent Feigenbutz] – I’m not going to say a bum, but a guy that isn’t really recognized or accomplished.
“If you look at Caleb Plant he starts good the first six, seven rounds and then towards the end of the fight he kind of leaves himself vulnerable for open shots, and he gets hit with shots he shouldn’t get hit with. And Canelo gets stronger during the second half of the fight.”
Plant was last seen pitching a shutout against battle-worn Caleb Truax in January.
Still, Benavidez (24-0, 21 KOs) conceded that Plant (21-0, 12 KOs), of Nashville, would be more than competitive against Alvarez, at least in the early going, because of his elite boxing ability.
“Caleb can definitely give [Alvarez] some problems,” Benavidez said. I mean, Caleb and I have our problems or issues or whatever it may be but you can’t take away the fact that he’s a world champion and he’s a great boxer.”
In the end, not having the ability to crack with either hand will be Plant’s downfall against Alvarez, Benavidez said.
“I feel like Caleb Plant doesn’t pose a threat to Canelo because the only ones that pose a threat to Canelo are the ones with punching power,” Benavidez continued. “Caleb Plant is not that. He doesn’t have punching power like that. If he can box him all night and he fights the perfect fight he has a chance. But I think Canelo beats him. I don’t think he’ll pose a problem to Canelo.
Benavidez himself is gearing up for a scheduled match on Aug. 21 against one of Plant’s previous victims, Jose Uzcategui (29-4, 24 KOs). His last fight was in March, a stoppage over Ronald Ellis. Benavidez made it clear that his big picture goal is to fight Alvarez at some point down the line – and he is willing to be patient.
“Everybody wants Canelo because everybody wants the payday,” he said. “But I’m not here for the money. Obviously it’s a great part of the sport, but at the end of the day I want to get experience and the respect from the fans. I want to go down in history, too. If I have to go down the same route that Canelo did and fight every other name out there and then move into the best, that's what I'm gonna do. This fight is definitely gonna happen. I don’t know when. But it’s definitely gonna happen.