Saul ‘Canelo’ Álvarez and Jermell Charlo came face-to-face for the first time ahead of their battle for the Mexican’s undisputed title at 168lbs.
Canelo kicks off a three-fight deal under the Premier Boxing Champions banner by facing ‘Mell’ Charlo, the current four-belt super welterweight champion.
The Charlo twin will jump up two divisions to challenge for the super middleweight straps, vacating at least one of his own belts when the bell rings. At the first press conference, he said that the size doesn’t matter.
“A lot of guys are worried about the wrong things, moving up in weight – when you want to win something this big you gotta risk it all … I’m gonna be training my ass off, I’m goin’ crazy with it, and I’m gonna play it smart. Lock in. September 30th.”
UNDISPUTED 👑 vs UNDISPUTED 👑.
— Premier Boxing Champions (@premierboxing) August 15, 2023
Even if he disregards the weight as a factor, fans couldn’t when the pair first faced off. One said that Charlo was ‘the bigger man’ and thought it impressive he had been making 154lbs for so long.
Another pointed out that the American seemed to ‘naturally’ have more weight on the Mexican, who also gives away a few inches in height. Whilst someone said there was ‘no size advantage’ either way, it was pointed out that the real test was whether or not Charlo could handle the power at super middleweight.
Canelo began his professional career lighter than Charlo did. He made his debut at the super lightweight limit of 140, whilst Charlo kicked things off in the 147 welterweight ranks.
It’s since then that Canelo has made more ground, finding his sweet spot at 168 but also going as far as 175 on two occasions.
Whilst many agree that 168 isn’t an unrealistic weight for Charlo, it’s the quick leap from two divisions down that draws some concern. He and his team don’t share those thoughts.
In fact, they have said that he may not even push to land close to the limit in favour of keeping some speed and movement. Canelo is expected to come in as usual – fit, strong and looking to add a 40th stoppage victory to his record.
The two undisputed champions fight on September 30 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.