Fresh off thrilling win, Jermall Charlo has unification on his mind

by 24USATVJune 20, 2021, 9 p.m. 18
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Fresh off the fourth successful defense of his World Boxing Council middleweight champion, Houston’s Jermall Charlo already had his next possible opponent on his mind.

As one of four champions at 160 pounds, Charlo, who scored a decisive unanimous decision victory over Juan Macias Montiel on Saturday night at Toyota Center, has his sites set on collecting the other middleweight belts.

“One-hundred sixty is my weight division,” Charlo said in the ring after his win. “I want to unify. I want to get (Gennadiy) Golovkin in the ring. I want to bring him to Houston. I want to get Canelo to come to Houston if he’ll come down to 160. This is my weight division. I’m going to stay here and reign here.”

Golovkin, who has the International Boxing Federation belt at 160, is reportedly going to fight World Boxing Association champion Ryota Murata in a unification bout in December. The winner of that fight – Golovkin would be a heavy favorite – would make for an attractive opponent for Charlo in a bout that would put three of the middleweight belts on the line.

In the postfight press conference, Charlo also said he’d like to fight the World Boxing Organization champion Demetrius Andrade. The two have been circling each other for years with both fighters saying the other is ducking him. Setting up the fight has been complicated, since they fight on opposing networks.

"For sure, he’s got a belt, let’s go get him,” Charlo said. “We’re about that. We’re going to clean up the division sooner or later ... I fyou want to fight, you know how to make the fight happen. I’m not going to go back and forth with him. He’s a horrible fighter. It’s going to be a horrible fight, but whatever. I’m cool with all that.”

In retaining his WBC belt, Charlo showed fight fans a new side of himself. The slick boxer opted to stand toe-to-toe with the heavy-handed Montiel, throwing a career-high 769 punches. Even though Charlo suffered the first cut of his career, he still overwhelmed Montiel, winning the decision 120-108, 119-109, 118-109.

Although he won nearly every round, those three-minute victories didn’t come without a price as he showed up to the postfight press conference with stitches for the cut above his right eye that he said was caused by a headbutt. Charlo said the cut was a mark of pride.

“You see how I walked into this press conference with no sunglasses, right? I'm still pretty," Charlo said with a chuckle.

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