Saul Canelo Álvarez put in a dominant performance against Jermell Charlo, cruising to a wide unanimous points victory to retain his super middleweight titles.
Charlo was moving up two weight classes in an attempt to become undisputed in two divisions, but whether it was the weight, his recent inactivity, or the opponent in front of him, the super-welter champion never got going in the fight.
Canelo bossed proceedings from the opening bell, scored a knockdown in the seventh round and will have silenced some of the doubters who claim his best years are behind him.
Immediately after the fight, Charlo admitted he wasn’t his usual self between the ropes.
“I just felt like I wasn’t me in there.
I don’t make excuses so it is what it is. This boxing – sometimes you win sometimes you lose. Truthfully you could feel the difference in the weight. I jumped up 14 pounds. I’m undisputed in my weight division, so I was daring to be great right now.”
Canelo on the other hand says he’s back to his best having recovered from recent injuries.
“I’m a strong fighter all the time whoever I face. This Canelo, nobody can beat this Canelo. He’s a great fighter, he knows how to move in the ring. We worked on [going to the body.] For three months without my family, without everything. But I still love boxing. I love boxing so f***ing much. Boxing is my life. Boxing makes me the person I am today.”
Floyd Mayweather, who handed the Mexican his first career defeat back in 2013, was in attendance in Las Vegas, and speaking at a post fight press conference for his protege, Curmel Moton, ‘TBE’ reacted to Canelo’s performance.
“I respect Canelo, he’s one hell of a champion and he done one hell of a job tonight.”
Canelo’s victory was the first fight of a three fight deal with PBC and he has no shortage of options for his next bout, with the likes of Terence Crawford, David Benavidez and Jermall Charlo lining up for a shot at the undisputed super middleweight champion.