Canelo vs Charlo is upon us. The much-anticipated showdown for the undisputed super-middleweight crown between Canelo Alvarez (59-2-2, 39 KOs) and Jermell Charlo (35-1-1, 19 KOs) will take place this Saturday, September 30th, live from the T-Mobile area in Las Vegas.
Canelo is the undisputed king of the super-middleweight division. Jermell is the ruler of the super-welterweight division.
King Charlo is moving into unchartered territories and jumping two weight classes to dethrone King Alvarez.
If Canelo wins Canelo vs Charlo, he will continue to rule his division and move on to his next target.
If Charlo wins, it will be the second division he conquers and what could be considered the most remarkable upset in boxing since James’s “Buster” Douglas defeated Mike Tyson thirty-three years ago.
Here are what I believe will be the keys to victory for each fighter.
Canelo vs Charlo Keys To Victory For Jermell Charlo
Busy hands and swift footwork are the tools Jermell Charlo will need to beat Canelo Alvarez in Canelo vs Charlo.
Canelo is a pressure fighter with a tight guard who walks his opponents down.
Canelo likes to throw measuring jabs and then explode with left hooks and uppercuts.
Canelo is a patient fighter who lets the fight develop in his favor.
The Mexican native capitalizes on opportunities that are presented to him better than most fighters today.
The second an opponent throws a lazy jab or tries to lay on the ropes, Canelo will pounce on him in the blink of an eye, just like he did against Caleb Plant and John Ryder.
However, Canelo is not a perfect fighter, and his style is consistently flawed.
Canelo makes the same mistakes in every fight, and no one other than Dmitry Bivol has been able to capitalize on them.
Canelo's high guard and forward momentum make him easy to hit. And while Canelo is in his turtle shell, Charlo during Canelo vs Charlo must make his attack and break his guard down.
Charlo must continually do this throughout the fight.
Jermell Charlo has a pesky and stiff jab that he throws frequently.
Charlo throws double and triple jab combos, which blinds his foes and leaves them vulnerable for power shots.
When Charlo jabs effectively, he breaks down his foe’s guard and sets up fight-altering power shots like he did in the rematches against Castano and Harrison.
On the contrary, Canelo's jab is more of a measuring gauge than a full jab.
Therefore, if he leaves it lingering too long, it will be prime pickings for a Charlo counter right hand.
Charlo must attempt during Canelo vs Charlo to do what most fighters won't or can't do against Canelo Alvarez: attack the Mexican's body.
Canelo likes to keep his guard high, and if Charlo can successfully attack Canelo's body, it will lower Canelo’s hands and make it easy for Charlo to split his guard.
In addition, Charlo must be able to get away from Canelo’s counterpunches. The Texas native must throw his combinations and quickly move before Canelo gets set to throw his power shots.
Newsflash: Canelo is older, slower, and easier to hit. Even though he denies it…
For all the Canelo fanatics ready to stone me to death, it is essential to note that Canelo has been fighting for over eighteen years and is a veteran of sixty-three fights.
That kind of wear and tear takes a toll on any athlete, and Canelo is not the exception. (We touched on Canelo’s decline here.)
So, for Charlo to beat Canelo in Canelo vs Charlo, he will have to jab often, vary his attacks to the head and body of the champion, and look for Canelo’s lazy jab and capitalize on it.
Also, Jermell must be mobile during Canelo vs Charlo and move away from Canelo’s counterattack for the entire three minutes of every round.
Idle opponents are Canelo's favorite play toy.
Key To Victory For Canelo Alvarez
I don't see any reason for Canelo Alvarez to do anything differently than he has done against previous opponents.
Charlo doesn’t have the same firepower that Bivol does to make Canelo want to stop coming forward.
Also, Charlo doesn’t use his footwork very well and sometimes stands still in front of his opponents, making him easy to hit.
To add insult to injury, Charlo doesn't move his head very well and gets countered easily. He can't do this against Canelo, who foams at the mouth when he sees a stationary target.
Jermell is notorious for moving straight back when opponents attack and often finds himself with his back against the ropes—that is where Canelo does his best work against opponents.
When Canelo backs his challengers into a corner or against the ropes, he is very good at keeping them there, and it’s hard for opponents to escape unscathed.
However, what Canelo must do differently during Canelo vs Charlo than in previous fights is find a way to adjust his fight plan if Charlo proves to be mobile and difficult to hit.
Canelo is a creature of habit and doesn't change his style when he can't walk his opponent down.
When Jermell Charlo puts it all together, he is as good, if not better, than any fighter Canelo has faced in recent years.
That is tough Charlo to beat, and he can defeat Canelo Alvarez if the Mexican can’t make the necessary adjustments, as was the case against Dmitry Bivol.
So, for Canelo to beat Jermell Charlo, he must walk the Texan down, back him against the ropes, and do what he does best.
Canelo must find a way to time Charlo's bothersome jab and counter when the opportunity presents itself.
Furthermore, during Canelo vs Charlo he must be able to adjust his fight plan if Charlo brings his complete arsenal to the ring.
If Canelo can’t or refuses to do so, it will be a long night for the Mexican champion, and he will probably suffer the third loss of his excellent career.
In every great battle, each combatant draws up battle plans that will give them the tactical advantage to defeat their foe.
But only one will triumph.
Who will prevail?
Will it be Alvarez's relentless pressure and powerful counterpunching that will wear Charlo down?
Or will Charlo's hell-fire jab and blistering combinations best the Mexican champion?
These questions will indeed be answered come Saturday night during Canelo vs Charlo.