It's a new-school battle between two old-school fighters as undefeated IBF World Super Middleweight Champion Caleb Plant takes on former world champion Caleb Truax Saturday night on FOX.
This Saturday, January 30, FOX PBC Fight Night (6 p.m. ET/3 p.m. PT) brings you a world title bout between two truly old school boxers in the increasingly interesting super middleweight division.
From Shrine Auditorium and Expo Hall in Los Angeles, broadcast live on FOX and FOX Deportes, undefeated IBF World Super Middleweight Champion Caleb “Sweethands” Plant (20-0, 12 KOs) defends his title against former champ Caleb “Golden” Truax (31-4-2, 19 KOs) in the main event of a compelling card.
On the undercard, Michael Coffie and Darmani Rock go to war in a 10-round battle of unbeaten heavyweights and rising star Joey Spencer takes on Isiah Seldon in an eight-round super welterweight clash.
Life’s been a struggle every step of the way for defending world champ Caleb Plant. From extreme poverty to the horror of dealing with the death of his beautiful 19-month-old daughter, life has conspired to pull him away from his dreams. But the Nashville native's unique mix of inner fortitude and rock-solid work ethic has pushed him forward, making the impossible and unlikely into reality.
That's why Plant's stated goal of division dominance-- in a super middleweight class full of star power and talent-- is downright believable. This will be the third defense of his world title and, quite likely, his toughest since beating Jose Uzcategui for the belt back in January of 2019.
Caleb Truax, meanwhile, is working to get back what was once his.
The proud Minnesota native went to the UK in 2017 and captured the IBF super middleweight title in a hard-fought upset of home country Olympic hero James DeGale. The luster from that career-defining achievement would only last four months, however, as an immediate rematch to DeGale resulted in a close decision loss.
Truax is just 2-0 with one No Decision since dropping the belt, but assorted injuries and, of course, the COVID-19 boxing slowdown, have kept him from being more active. Now, the 37-year-old claims to be healed and rejuvenated and ready to pull off another upset.
At stake is Plant's IBF world super middleweight title and a full step forward in pursuit of blockbuster 168-pound title fights down the road.
Plant is a throwback boxing stylist who patiently works angles and throws quick, fluid combinations when opportunity presents itself. His solid jab, thrown both to the head and body, creates space and establishes tempo. He's not exceptionally heavy-handed, but his speed does create impact and earns respect from opposition. Already regarded as one of the better technical fighters in the game, his ring IQ continues to grow each fight.
With a hint of the tilted shoulder, give-‘em-the-side-of-your-body positioning à la classic James Toney, "Sweethands" is adept at defense and all-around excellent in the transition from defense to offense and vice versa.
Truax is also a throwback fighter, but one of a completely different style than Plant.
"Golden" is a blue collar battler who comes forward, putting pressure on opposition and grinding his way to success. Although not particularly explosive or gifted with elite-level athleticism, his grit and tenacity pay off on the inside, where he is most effective with a solid, straight right hand and uppercuts from both sides.
Truax is solid on defense and keeps himself safe with efficient head movement, parrying of punches, and good all-around ring instincts.
“ I’m looking to end this fight early. ” Undefeated IBF World Super Middleweight Champion - Caleb Plant
"I’m fully focused on January 30. I’m not looking past him, but I am looking through him. I’m looking to end this fight early. I don’t see it going 12 rounds, so whether they throw in the white towel, I throw in the white towel for him or the ref steps in to do his job, I’m looking for a stoppage. This ends with me getting my hand raised in spectacular fashion. I feel like there are unification fights to be made and I feel like they will happen. But as of now, January 30 has my full attention."
"I’m going to win because I’m the most experienced and the best fighter that Plant has ever faced. I’ve always been the underdog and I embrace that role. I fight my best when I’m in that spot and I look forward to proving all the naysayers wrong again. At my age, at 37, there is no telling when I’ll be able to get a world title fight again. So I’ve been approaching it as if this is my last shot. I’ve been very focused in camp and just determined to leave it all in the ring and get my belt back."
What makes Plant-Truax interesting is not only the contrast of styles, but also each fighter's steadfast dedication to their own style.
Truax will do what he does. He'll come forward and put pressure on the defending champ, endeavoring to get inside where he can offset a speed disadvantage by sheer force of will. The challenge will come in his penchant for starting slow. If he allows Plant to establish a favorable distance and pace, it'll be exceedingly tough to turn the tide, especially burdened with a nine-year age disadvantage.
Plant will also do what he does. He'll use angles and work to create distance, trying to keep the challenger at the end of his quick fists, unable to march straight forward into the pocket. Truax's ability to grind down opposition could be an issue for Plant, who did tire under Jose Uzcategui's pressure late in his title-winning performance.
The defending IBF champ will be the fresher fighter in this encounter and the one best suited to control both pace and space. But pressure is a script-flipper in boxing and Truax has proven himself capable of disassembling quicker, younger, and more athletically-gifted opposition.
On Saturday, we're going to see an old school title fight between old school talents. No matter who emerges victorious, the winner will have truly earned his victory.
For a closer look at Plant vs Truax, check out our fight night page.
- Plant vs Truax