Saul “Canelo” Alvarez reaffirmed his super middleweight supremacy on Saturday with a devastating unanimous decision victory over Jermell Charlo to retain his undisputed world title.
In a battle of undisputed champions, Mexico’s Alvarez knocked down Charlo in the seventh round as he defended his WBO, WBC, WBA and IBF belts, becoming the first to defend all four for a third straight time.
Two judges saw it 118-109 and the third scored it 119-108 for Alvarez, who was the aggressor from the start and sent Charlo to the canvas for just the second time in his career in the seventh, rocking him with a right to the temple then following up with an uppercut that had the American sagging to a knee.
“You know, I worked all the fight to go in the body,” Alvarez said. “And then I changed the punch and that’s what happened.”
Alvarez said he’d planned to attack Charlo’s body, and he went after it early, digging in from the right and left.
Charlo, the undisputed super welterweight world champion who was fighting above the 154-pound limit for the first time, never found an attacking rhythm as Alvarez dictated the pace, effectively cut off the ring and consistently backed his opponent up.
Alvarez improved to 60-2-2 with 39 knockouts and backed up his claim that a high-altitude training camp in the California mountains had restored the fitness and strength that seemed to be lacking in two unimpressive victories over Gennady Golovkin and John Ryder since his failed foray at light heavyweight against Dmitry Bivol.
“I’m the best,” Alvarez said. “Who’s better? Nobody can beat this Canelo.”
Certainly Charlo had no answer for him after falling to 35-2 with one drawn and 19 knockouts.
“It’s boxing,” Charlo said. “Sometimes you win and sometimes you lose.”
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