Truax upset the odds when he sauntered into England in December of 2017 and took a majority decision over former champion James DeGale.
He’s been counted out before. He knows he is the underdog. He has gone in against a fighter that was already looking to other (bigger) fights down the road. But, he pulled off a huge upset before and he is looking to do it again.
Former IBF world super middleweight champion, Caleb “Golden” Truax, (31-4-2, 19 KO’s), of St. Michael, Minnesota, is currently getting ready for his next world title shot against undefeated Caleb “Sweet Hands” Plant (20-0, 12 KO’s) of Nashville Tennessee on January 30th in Los Angeles, California.
Truax upset the odds when he sauntered into England in December of 2017 and took a majority decision over former champion James DeGale. However, 4 months later, Truax had to return the title to DeGale who took it back in the rematch with a unanimous decision in Las Vegas.
Going into his title winning effort against DeGale, Truax had amassed a very strong resume, but it wasn’t without its bumps. While he had amassed 28 wins, he also had dropped a decision to Jermain Taylor, had been stopped by Anthony Dirrell, had been held to a draw against Ossie Duran and fellow Minnesotan Phil Williams and had been stopped in his first world title shot against Daniel Jacobs in 2015.
So, while he had been impressive on many nights, he had also come up even, or on the short end, at other times. In short, he was looked on as a pretty safe defense for DeGale – but Truax didn’t get the memo and came back home to Minnesota as a world champion. And, as he prepares to head to Los Angeles at the end of the month to try to wrestle Plant’s IBF world super middleweight title, he is banking on, again, pulling off the upset win.
Beating Plant won’t be easy as the undefeated, Las Vegas-residing, Nashville native has looked very good in making 2 title defences since winning the title in January of 2019. In fact, many people are looking at this fight as a ‘stay busy’ fight for Plant who is on the radar for huge fights with the likes of popular, former champion David Benavidez, England’s Billy Joe Saunders or the big money Mexican everyone wants, superstar Saul Alvarez.
However, Truax, who is the decided underdog going into the fight against the decade-younger Plant, has been in this position before, in a title fight, and he pulled off the win when he wasn’t expected to. In his mind, he did it once and he certainly plans to do it again.
At age 37, and having only fought twice since April of 2019, one could assume that this is a cash out for Truax. But, a fighter with nothing to lose can be dangerous. And, with a lot more boxing behind him than ahead, Truax knows this may very well be his last shot at a world title.
And, while he knows he’s the B-side in this bout, he has been there before and look how that worked out for him. As he stated in a recent media conference call, he’s going to show up, give it his all, and go in there and do what he does best.
“I’m very grateful and fortunate to be in this spot. I’m feeling fantastic. Everything is going as planned as far as camp. I’ve had some great sparring over the past five or six weeks. I’m feeling healthy for the first time in a couple years. I was talking to my trainer this morning when we were working out and I’m almost paranoid that something is going to go wrong in the last nine days. I’m feeling so good right now. I’m just excited and ready to take on this challenge”, he said. “I didn’t have my greatest performance in my last fight but the most important thing I took from it was that my Achilles was healthy after eight or nine months of recovery. It held up perfectly and that was the most important thing. I’m ready to move forward”.
Asked if Plant was his toughest opponent to date, he said he’ll have to wait until they are under the lights.
“It’s hard to say if Plant is the toughest opponent of my career until we get in the ring. He’s not the most experienced guy, he’s not the most highly vaunted guy that I’ve fought. Probably Danny Jacobs was and even James DeGale. So that’s to be determined until we get in the ring and mix it up”, he said.
While Caleb knows he is the underdog, that is fine with him and it is a role he relishes.
“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”, he said. “I go in there and give it my all and fight hard and try to put on the best performance I possibly can for the fans and come out with the win. In a perfect world, it’s a slugfest, a crowd-pleasing fight and I get the win in a 12-round decision. Actually, in a perfect world I go out there and knock him out with the first punch. But we all know that’s not going to happen. He’s a good fighter so I expect to go 12 rounds and just get the job done.”
Minnesota’s Plant has beaten the odds before, and he is looking to do it again.
“I just want to fight, to just get in there and do what I do, and fight and win”, he said. “I don’t care if I’m a long shot or anything. I’m hungry and I’m treating this like my last opportunity to win my title back,” Truax said. “I’m going in as the underdog, but I’ve been in that position before and I’ve beaten the odds.”
A couple years back, he showed up as a long shot, and left with the world title – on January 30th he’s hoping to do it again.