By Lem Satterfield
WBC 160-pound interim champion Jermall Charlo is increasingly emphatic regarding his opinions on division counterparts Canelo Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin.
“The Hit Man” (27-0, 21 KOs) claims the duo out-right fears him as he chases his first defense, fourth straight stoppage and 20th knockout in his past 22 fights potentially against Russian southpaw Matt Korobov (28-1, 14 KOs) at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York, on December 22 on FOX (8 p.m. ET/ 5 p.m. PT).
The 35-year-old Korobov was previously scheduled to face Colombia’s Juan DeAngel (21-9-1, 19 KOs) in an eight-rounder on the non-televised portion of the undercard, but could replace originally scheduled opponent Willie Monroe (23-3, 6 KOs) due to an adverse finding in one of Monroe’s pre-fight performance-enhancing drug tests.
The Showtime-televised card also features Charlo’s younger-by-a-minute, 28-year-old twin, Jermell (31-0, 15 KOs), defending his WBC junior middleweight crown against repeat title challenger Tony Harrison (27-2, 21 KOs).
Jermall Charlo’s trainer, Ronnie Shields, told BoxingScne.com the 28-year-old Alvarez (51-1-2, 35 KOs) and the 36-year-old Golovkin (38-1-1, 34 KOs) “are afraid” to face the 6-foot-1 boxer-puncher’s amalgam of speed, power, athleticism and youth.
Charlo vowed during a Wednesday conference call “to show the world why" Golovkin and Alvarez, among others in the division, "don’t really want" to fight him, adding that ultimately, "they’re gonna have to answer to Jermall Charlo."
Charlo was more direct during a recent interview with FightHype.com, to the point of using “Cinnamon,” the English translation for “Canelo” owing to the fighter’s red hair.
“[Alvarez] is scared. Where are you at, Cinnamon? We’ve been calling you out for a long time, so it’s about that time to show up and give the people what they wanna see,” said Jermall Charlo, his brother, Jermell, standing to his left, before a small group of reporters.
“The people wanna see us fight the best in the world. We feel like we’re the best in the world. Come on, man. Stop running behind [promoter Oscar] De La Hoya…The belts make the rankings. We’re No. 1 in the world and the best in the world.”
Alvarez dethroned Golovkin as WBA/WBC middleweight champion by majority decision in September’s rematch of their draw in September 2017, and earned his third crown in as many divisions with Saturday’s four-knockdown, third-round KO to dethrone WBA “regular” 168-pound champion Rocky Fielding (27-2, 15 KOs) while retaining his 160-pound titles.
Alvarez floored Fielding with left hooks in the first and second rounds, and twice in the third – the first time with a right hand to the head and the last with a third left hook to the body. The Mexican star could return to 160 in May.
“Triple-G [Golovkin] is getting older. So the next terror in the division is what, Canelo?” said Charlo. “I’ll take him [Alvarez] first, and Triple-G can recover from what he’s been through…But we’ll see what they do next, man. We’re here to run the division.”