By Dan Ambrose: IBF super middleweight champion Caleb Plant maintains that he deserves to get a bigger purse than the recent past Canelo Alvarez opponents Billy Joe Saunders and Callum Smith because he’s got a bigger fanbase in the United States.
Although Plant may not want to admit it, many people view him as Saunders 2.0 because of his lackluster technical fighting style, lack of power, and weak resume.
Plant hasn’t faced stiff competition to build his name brand, and he doesn’t possess power. Here are Calebs’s last three opponents since capturing the IBF 168-lb title from Jose Uzcategui:
- Caleb Truax
- Vincent Feignbutz
- Mike Lee
Does Plant deserve $10 million to face Canelo?
Unfortunately, there would be problems with the negotiations if Plant (21-0, 12 KOs) and his management at Premier Boxing Champions [PBC] started insisting on the $10 million+ that he mentioned recently about wanting a fight with Canelo.
If Canelo is going to pay Plant $10 million, he would essentially be buying his belt from him because he may not be worth anywhere near that number.
The question is, does Canelo want Plant’s IBF 168-lb strap enough to overpay him by giving him $10 million+ or should he have to make a more reasonable $5 million take-it-or-leave-it offer?
That number might be too high. I mean, when you look at what Plant brings to the table, he might actually be a downgrade from Canelo’s last opponent Saunders rather than an upgrade that would suggest that his purse be $10M rather than $8M.
Alvarez’s last opponent, former WBO 168-lb champion Saunders (30-1, 14 KOs), reportedly got an $8 million purse to fight the Mexican star last May.
Given Saunders’ lack of name recognition and fanbase in the U.S, that purse was considered high in the eyes of a lot of people.
Also, Saunders’ purely technical safety-first fighting style did not lend itself to fight with Canelo to be an exciting one that would guarantee entertainment and high viewership.
Plant says why he deserves $10M+ for Alvarez
“I got a much bigger fanbase in the United States; I do much more viewership than any of his past opponents,” said Caleb Plant to Fighthype when asked if he deserves a bigger purse than Billy Joe Saunders and Callum Smith got paid to fight Canelo.
“My last fight [against Caleb Truax] did two million views against somebody who if I had a real name in there with me, the numbers would be outrageous.
“I got the highest watched FS1 show of all time with almost a million views.
“My viewership is up there. I got a good team around me, Al Haymon….and they’re going to sit down real soon, and we’re going to try and get it worked out.
“I’ve got a great team around me. You don’t see anybody out with 21 fights in the position I’m in with or without the Canelo fight.
“The viewership, what I get paid, nothing. We got a great team around me, and we’re going to do whatever we can to make that happen,” said Plant about the Canelo fight,” said Plant.
I don’t know that you can make the argument that Plant deserves a bigger purse for a fight with Canelo than Saunders or Callum Smith.
Plant = lateral move from Saunders
It seems to me that Plant is a lateral move from a fight with Saunders, bringing almost nothing to the table besides his IBF title.
Plant’s dry personality will make it difficult to attract interest from boxing fans in a fight between him and Canelo.
During Plant’s interviews, he looks nervous, defensive and his eyes are shooting around in all directions. He doesn’t look confident and often looks half-asleep.
Canelo won’t be able to count on Plant being able to drum up interest from boxing fans in the same way an over-the-top YouTuber like Jake Paul would.
You have to say that Canelo can do a heck of a lot better than Plant by choosing someone like David Benavidez, Gennadiy Golovkin, Demetrius Andrade, Jermall Charlo, or Edger Berlanga as his next opponent.
This is a downgrade of an opponent from Saunders rather than an upgrade in this writer’s estimation.
Caleb wanted an eight-week camp for Canelo fight
“I’m not focused on that. I’m focusing on staying in the gym doing what I do,” said Plant when asked about the Canelo Alvarez negotiations.
“We didn’t want to take the fight beforehand to let my hand heal up all the way. It would be a shame to jump in there too quick and reinjured my hand and not be able to give the fans the undisputed fight.
“We’re taking our time, and we’re going to sit down soon and try and get it worked out.
“It was one where it was five weeks away, four training weeks,” said Plant when asked if he’d been given an offer in the past to fight Canelo.
“It was never an official offer or anything like that. It was just in the air, basically any super middleweight. Myself and any other super middleweight besides Callum Smith, we were all on board.
“I’m a world-class fighter; I deserve world-class respect. That’s an eight-week training camp.
“If you’re the pound-for-pound, the face of the sport, there should be no issue to give your opponent an eight-week camp,” said Plant.
Caleb took a lot of heat from boxing fans when he refused to take a fight with the Canelo on five weeks’ notice instead of a full eight weeks. For one, it was a huge fight that was being offered to Plant, the biggest of his career.
Secondly, Plant had just finished fighting Vincent Feigenbutz, and it wasn’t as if he was out of shape. Plant had just finished beating up on a weak opponent in a one-sided fight.
As such, there was no reason for Plant to need a full eight weeks when he had just finished fighting Feigenbutz.
In other words, Plant was already in shape, and all he needed was to fine-tune a game plane for the Canelo fight.
But instead of agreeing to the offer to fight Canelo, Plant passed it up, which gave the impression that he was ducking the fight because he lacked confidence.