Canelo Álvarez, Caleb Plant trade blows at news conference

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Canelo Álvarez and Caleb Plant couldn’t wait until Nov. 6 to start out throwing hands. The super-middleweight champions traded blows at their press conference Tuesday to market their upcoming title unification bout, and therefore the exchange left Plant with a cut under his right eye. The fighters scuffled after exchanging verbal barbs during the ceremonial faceoff before the press conference began within the garden of the Beverly Hilton. Apparently, in response to a comment from Plant about Álvarez’s mother, the Mexican superstar knocked Plant backward with a two-handed shove. “You can say whatever you would like to me, but not about my mother,” Álvarez said afterward.

Plant progressed and threw a left hook at Álvarez, who mostly dodged it and countered with a left to Plant’s face. Plant said the blow struck his sunglasses, which jammed into his cheek and caused the cut. “We were just saying things, just the traditional back-and-forth banter, then he did what he did,” Plant said. Álvarezput it succinctly on Twitter while posting a video of the brouhaha:“Don’t mention my mom.” The fighters’ camps eventually separated them, but Plant was left dabbing at the blood on his cheek. He eventually placed on his sunglasses for a frosty, combative press conference during which Plant repeatedly called out Álvarez for his doping violations in 2018.

Álvarez (56-1-2, 38 KOs) will risk his WBC, WBA and WBO super middleweight titles against Plant (21-0, 12 KOs), the unbeaten IBF champion from Tennessee, once they meet at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas . Plant repeatedly said Álvarez and trainer Eddy Reynoso are “cheaters.” Álvarez was suspended for 6 months for clenbuterol detected during a drug test, although the Mexican champ claimed the banned substance came from tainted meat.

“This sport is just too dangerous for people to be popping positive,” Plant said. “He’s a cheater. It’s not up for discussion. Did he get suspended? Did he test positive? It’s not about what I say. It’s about what the (athletic) commission said. you’ve got to require that up with them, not me.” Reynoso responded angrily when pressed on Álvarez’s past positive test and therefore the newer failed doping test for Oscar Valdez, Canelo’s training partner. Speaking in Spanish, Reynoso didn’t directly address Plant’s comments, but instead profanely suggested Plant wasn’t training hard enough to win in seven weeks.

“Taking illegal substances doesn’t happen because you’re confident,” Plant said. “It happens because you’re afraid. That just gives me more confidence. I’ve dedicated tons to the present sport, and it’ll be my life’s work coming together therein one moment once I beat him. it might etch my name within the history books, and that’s what I’m here to try to do.” Álvarez is unbeaten in 15 fights since his only career loss to Floyd Mayweather in 2013. He traded insults with Plant after their physical exchange but kept his public comments briefer. “For me, it’s for history, for Mexico, for my team,” he said. “I’m getting to knock out this guy in but eight rounds.”

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