Violence bled from the ring onto the press stage on Tuesday when boxing’s top fighter, Saul ‘Canelo’ Alverez, came face to face with the incumbent of the IBF title and his rival, Caleb Plant. The fight had already been catalogued as one of the most anticipated events of the sport’s roster for 2021 before the sudden outburst of violence between the two. The outburst only proved to create more hype for the fight which will go down on November 6 at he MGM Grand Arena in Las Vegas.
It began with a forceful push by Alvarez who wasted no time in riling up and confronting his soon-to-be-opponent. The push sent Plant stumbling a few feet, almost falling off the stage erected for the media conference in Beverly Hills, California. The aggression was preceded by insults flung by both athletes in their first time meeting in person since both parties agreed to the fight. Plant, unwilling to be seen as complacent in his bullying, struck back with a quick open palm blow which Alvarez narrowly avoided with Plant’s hand grazing his cheek. Alvarez responded with his own strike, although his was a markedly more successful attempt, liberating the sunglasses from Plant’s nose and leaving him with a bleeding cut.
Even with his bleeding laceration and after the fighters had been separated, Plant didn’t back down. He hit back with accusations of cheating through doping as Alvarez faced allegations of drugging when he was found to have clenbuterol in his system in 2018 which resulted in his suspension from the ring for 6 months, about which Alvarez maintains that it was accidentally ingested through contaminated meat he had eaten in Mexico.
Plant had little patience for the excuse, tweeting out; “Does that stem from insecurity? Because taking illegal substances, that doesn’t stem from confidence. That stems from fear.”