By: Sean Cross
“I always work hard,” former IBF super middleweight champion Caleb Plant told the media just days before his October 14 fight with former world champion Anthony Dirrell. The 21-1 plant has given fans or analysts no reason to doubt its performance. In his final fight, Plant learns that hard work isn’t always enough. Sure, Plant had a great run last year when he faced the legendary Canelo Alvarez. In fact, Canelo admitted to being upset with Plante during their first fight. Ultimately, though, Canelo’s patience and power caught up to Plante, who brutally stopped the native Tennessean leader in the 11th round.
But that was then. And come Saturday night in Brooklyn, on the undercard of Deontay Wilder’s highly-anticipated comeback fight, Plant will slide the ropes at the Barclays Center to remind the world that he’s still a force to be reckoned with. “It’s been a minute since I’ve been in the ring,” Plant said. Still, Plant made it clear that he’s still doing his notoriously difficult job. “It’s not grudges when we get there,” he said of training. “Bradman (legendary coach Thomas Edwards), my father, me, it was a great chemistry.
Of course, it’s only natural that people wonder what the plant has planned for the future. Dirrell, 38, can be seen over the hill. Still, the 30-year-old made it clear to reporters that his thoughts are on the here and now — or rather, the Barclays Center on Saturday night. “I really didn’t think about it after this fight,” he said. “Now I need to focus on the task at hand.” Given the apparent animosity between himself and Dirrell, it’s no surprise that Plant caught the eye this weekend.
Speaking about Dirrell’s criticism, Plant said, “He’s never had a successful title defense in every fight and he’s never going to have a successful title defense in his entire career because after Saturday night, he’s out of here, he’s retired.” Plant was asked if he saw the Dirrell fight as personal. The Plant-Dirrell fight is set for 12 rounds and will be the main event of Saturday’s Deontay Wilder-Robert Helenius heavyweight bout.The main card will air live on Fox Pay Per View.