Canelo Alvarez dominates Jermell Charlo, retains undisputed super middleweight titles

Canelo Alvarez beat Jermell Charlo by a wide unanimous decision in their super middleweight title fight at T-Mobile Arena on Sept. 30, 2023 in Las Vegas. (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)

LAS VEGAS — For anyone who saw slippage in Canelo Alvarez during his less-than-spectacular win over John Ryder in Mexico on May 6 and expected it to carry over to Saturday, well, it didn’t.

Alvarez dominated the taller and rangier Jermell Charlo on Saturday at T-Mobile Arena in a battle of undisputed champions. The two competed for Alvarez’s undisputed super middleweight titles and it was no contest most of the way.

Alvarez won a unanimous decision to retain his titles by scores of 118-109 twice and 119-108. Yahoo Sports had it 119-108 for Alvarez.

Alvarez scored the only knockdown of the fight in the seventh round when he crushed Charlo with a huge right to the head while the two were battling in a neutral corner. Charlo didn’t immediately go down, but as Alvarez was looking for the finisher, Charlo slumped to the canvas. There were about 90 seconds left in the round, but to his credit, Charlo managed to survive.

Alvarez showed why many believed he was the No. 1 pound-for-pound fighter in the world before undisputed welterweight champion Terence Crawford’s ascension. He dictated the pace of the fight, walking Charlo down and belting him with withering shots to the body.

The few times Charlo let his hands go, Alvarez had good head movement. And he was consistently able to cut off the ring and get Charlo where he wanted him. Charlo simply wasn’t aggressive enough and didn’t throw his jab with anywhere near the kind of authority he needed to halt Alvarez’s onslaught.

"Boxing made me the person I am today,” Alvarez said. “That why I love boxing so much. I f***ing love boxing.”

It was a master class performance by Alvarez, who was never in trouble and who walked Charlo down from the bout’s earliest moments.

“I’m the best,” Alvarez said. “Who’s better? Nobody can beat this Canelo.”

Charlo was taller by four inches and had a three-inch edge in reach, but he never used it. He allowed Alvarez to back him up and didn’t give Alvarez anything that would concern him.

Charlo had little to say. “It’s boxing. Sometimes you win and sometimes you lose.”