Jermell Charlo wasn’t soft and cuddly during the Wednesday press conference in Vegas to hype the Saturday show between the man at 168 and the man at 154 pounds.
But the Texas twin was once again not putting forth that trademark tightly-wound intensity which was a hallmark of leadins to his bouts for some time.
Lions only, that shout came to be known as the Charlo twins’ tag, and most of us thought there’d be an interesting clash of personalities in this promotion.
In fact, Jermell Charlo has been publicly so effusive in praising Canelo that it’s been a consistent subject since the fight got announced. People have wondered, what happened to that outward fire?
“We finally made it to this moment…Canelo is the kind of fighter you can’t take for granted,” Jermell Charlo said during the Showtime event. “He’s done everything in this sport of boxing and he’s got nothing to prove.”
“I have so much on my plate and in order to continue my legacy, I have to be equipped with every tool. I know that the fans are gonna win on Saturday night. You’re gonna see us back again for a rematch, because this is my moment,” he said.
Yes, I do often wonder if it’s a “tell” when one fighter talks about competing, but not WINNING the upcoming fight.
How Confident Is Jermell Charlo?
Jermell Charlo really didn’t hammer home the notion that he will beat Canelo Saturday.
Only he knows… Is there significant self doubt possibly holding Jermell back from being his best self Saturday?
No, he didn’t denigrate his chances, either. “I don’t think Canelo has faced a fighter of my caliber,” Jermell Charlo said. “He’s been in there with great fighters, but there’s something I bring to the table that’s a lot different than anyone he’s seen.”
And yes, it’s not like Jermell has given obvious hints left and right that isn’t as confident in this leap up in weight as would be ideal…
“I’m coming to win this fight, no matter what he says. We shall see Saturday. If he’s motivated to prove to me that he has skills, so be it. I’m coming to win,” he re-iterated.
Tickets for the live event, which is promoted by Canelo Promotions and TGB Promotions, are available through AXS.com.
Now, at one point it looked and sounded like we might get some salty Jermell Charlo.
Canelo seemed to be seeing if he could goad Jermell into losing his cool. “He’s gonna feel it,” Canelo said, taking a crack at Jermell’s level of competition.
“It’s hard to explain it, but it’s just something different. He’s not used to being in there with a fighter like me….He hasn’t experienced this kind of level of fight. You will see and you will learn.”
EDDY REYNOSO, Canelo’s Trainer and Manager
“We spent three months training for this fight and had no setbacks whatsoever. It’s been a while since Canelo has been able to train so intensely. We’ve left behind the injuries and setbacks and we’re ready to show that Canelo is prepared to put on a great fight for the fans.
DERRICK JAMES, Charlo’s Trainer
“This is a very special event because it’s undisputed versus undisputed. The great Canelo Álvarez is gonna bring out an even greater Jermell Charlo. I’m looking forward to Jermell being great and becoming undisputed once again. He’s here to make history.”
TOM BROWN, President of TGB Promotions
“Undisputed versus undisputed. I love saying it all week and I love the sound of it. On Saturday night we have a historic matchup between reigning male undisputed champions.
“Canelo is the best pound-for-pound fighter today. He’s a superstar and the face of boxing. Jermell Charlo is the first ever undisputed 154-pound champion and now looks to become undisputed in two weight divisions.
“This is a great card from top to bottom, and as a fan, I cannot wait for Saturday night. Get your tickets early, purchase the pay-per-view and sit back and enjoy the night. This is truly a special fight.”
STEPHEN ESPINOZA, President, SHOWTIME SPORTS
“We have a special historic matchup featuring the biggest stars in the sport in an exciting fight that breaks through to the mainstream and attracts non boxing fans the world over.
“This isn’t just a fight. This isn’t just a boxing match. This is different. This is the best the sport has to offer. This is as good as it gets.
“Calling Canelo vs. Jermell Charlo a fight is like calling filet mignon meat. It’s like calling LeBron James a basketball player. It’s like calling ‘The Godfather' just a movie. This is special.
“Not all boxing events are the same. Not all combat sports are the same. What we’re doing here is the highest level of the sport. This is a historic matchup; one truly undisputed champion against another undisputed champion.
“There is nothing in combat sports that matches this. We have to enjoy this event and savor it.”
NOTE: Espinoza had a good turn at the mic. He didn’t touch on that rumor making the rounds, instead offering evidence that his team has been performing well, about two boxing cards a month on average.
Also, he quite pointedly announced that boxing can deliver dough, this gate will be another $20 million gate, third in a series (Tank vs Ryan, Bud vs Errol).