We analyse the credentials of the two super-middleweights as they get set to end their long-standing feud in what promises to be a pulsating sin-city dust-up.
In amongst the excitement of Gervonta Davis v Ryan Garcia being made official and the possibility of Tyson Fury v Oleksandr Usyk taking place, a mammoth super-middleweight war also looms on the horizon.
Bitter rivals David Benavidez (3/10) and Caleb Plant (12/5) will finally settle their differences later this month in a high stakes clash under the bright lights of fabulous Las Vegas, Nevada.
Describing a fight as “bad blood” or a “grudge match” can sometimes be an exercise in hyperbole, but make no mistake about it, the animosity between these two former champions is as real as it gets.
Tensions have been brewing for some time, and the rivalry has almost threatened to get out of hand on the odd occasion that the pair have been in each others company.
Then however, the gloves were off... but come the early hours of Sunday March 26, they will most definitely be on - and there can only be one winner.
bet365's Shaun Brown takes a look at the make-up of the two men, assesses each of their strengths and weaknesses, and analyses just where this hotly-anticipated bout could be won and lost.
|David Benavidez||Caleb Plant|
|Nickname:||The Mexican Monster||Sweethands|
|Height:||6ft 2ins||6ft 1ins|
|Trainer:||Jose Benavidez Sr||Stephen Edwards|
|Record:||26-0 (23 KOs)||22-1 (13 KOs)|
|Previous titles:||WBC super-middleweight||IBF super-middleweight|
|Best win:||R3 TKO v David Lemieux (May 2022)||R9 KO v Anthony Dirrell (Oct 2022)|
“The Mexican Monster” David Benavidez is a man on a mission with his end game being a dust-up with undisputed super-middleweight champion Canelo Alvarez.
The 26-year-old is a man built for boxing thanks to the influence of his father and trainer Jose, and David’s brother Jose Jr.
Fighting Caleb Plant represents an opportunity for the odds-on pre-fight favourite Benavidez to lay a marker on the 12 stone division.
Canelo is still the man to beat but there is little doubt that the heir apparent could well be Benavidez.
With a career derailed by out of the ring issues and a previous failure to make weight, the unbeaten super-middleweight is intent on making a statement against Plant at the MGM Grand.
His last victory may have been against a shell of David Lemieux, but his appetite for destruction was a sight for the eyes when the punches flowed.
Benavidez has been blighted by inactivity, but a destructive win on March 26 can pave the way for the super-fight he craves.
Defeat is an unthinkable step backwards which may be difficult to cope with for the betting favourite.
|Power||Can be reckless|
|Punch combinations||Making weight|
|Hand speed||Gets caught in the emotion|
|Relentless work rate|
Benavidez will be determined to make a mark in this fight, and he will step inside the ropes with one clear intention... knocking Plant out.
For me, he will look to start fast, and if he can land his power punches early on, then the 4/1 odds on offer for a KO, TKO or Disqualification victory between 'Rounds 1 - 6' looks a strong bet.
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Like Benavidez, a fight against Canelo Alvarez is the goal for Caleb Plant.
Yes, we know that “Sweethands” has already shared a ring with the Mexican when he dropped his IBF title in their undisputed fight 16 months ago, but he feels the two have unfinished business.
For a rematch to take place, Plant has to overcome the formidable Benavidez however, and trainer Stephen Edwards believes his charge will have to go to a “dark place” to prevail.
The question is can the 30-year-old prevail in a dog fight against a seemingly unstoppable animal?
Plant knows that his boxing ability and quick thinking could make all the difference at the MGM Grand, but in his last win against Anthony Dirrell we saw a different side to him.
The 9th round KO, and savage celebration afterwards, showed a merciless individual who can hold a grudge to the end.
Benavidez is the ideal character to show us whether or not that outstanding success was a pure one-off.
Both men will have to answer questions on the night but the most revealing one may be who wants it more...
|A strong jab||Struggles under pressure|
|Good movement||Quite predictable|
|Nice footwork||Marks up easily|
If Plant can survive the early rounds and avoid cuts, then he will fancy his chances of taking the fight the distance and scoring a points victory.
bet365 are 9/2 on Plant winning this bout on the judges scorecards.
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