Newly crowned WBO world super-welterweight world champion Tim Tzsyu gave a scathing reflection on Jermell Charlo’s performance against Canelo Alvarez this past weekend.
Charlo, formerly undisputed champion at 154lbs, suffered a unanimous decision points defeat to the reigning super-middleweight undisputed champion in Las Vegas at the T-Mobile arena. Charlo would put up a tame effort in attempting to upset the odds and claim victory against Canelo, suffering a seventh-round knockdown in the process of the defeat.
Tszyu, a previous divisional rival and mandatory challenger of Charlo prior to the latter’s move to super-middleweight, was less than complimentary in Charlo’s efforts to defeat Canelo.
Charlo was due to defend his undisputed title in January of this year but was forced to withdraw from the contest due to a hand injury. Tszyu was then elevated to interim champion status by the WBO after the organisation ordered Charlo to defend his WBO and undisputed world crown before the month’s end in September.
Charlo ultimately would agree to move up two weight classes and face the undisputed super-middleweight champion Canelo instead. On the sound of the opening ball between Canelo-Charlo, Tszyu was officially elevated to full world champion status and removed the undisputed mantle from Charlo. Australian Tszyu will make the maiden defence of his newly acquired strap against Brian Mendoza on October 14th in his native Australia.
Speaking to Fox Sports (Australia), Tszyu was scathing in his evaluation of Charlo’s performance, insisting that Charlo was only there to survive instead of attempting to defeat Canelo.
In all honesty, I thought the fight wasn’t as competitive at all,” Tszyu said to Fox Sports.
“I felt Charlo just went in there to survive. He was working a lot on defence. He never made it competitive. Like, he never really went out there and said, ‘You know what, I’m going to have a go at it.’
“Even when his coach was saying he was losing the fight, you need to go out there and actually go at it. He never pushed it, never put the press up, just moved around backwards. He had a certain game plan stuck in his head and just tried to move around and not get hit, and that was it.
“Good on him for surviving the whole 12 rounds, that’s an achievement on its own. But it’s not an achievement to lose the fight. You’ve got to go out there to win. Either win or die on your shield, as they say.”
During the media rounds of fight week, Charlo gave a less than impressionable view of Tszyu's impending title elevation.
“If he (Tszyu) gets the WBO (belt) and they elevate him, he’s a paper champion. A champion that didn’t have to do anything. A spar champion.
“I had to knock everybody out for my belts. So if Tszyu is watching, hey, don’t be too high up on your horse because you didn’t do nothing in boxing. Of course, I’m going to take a bigger opportunity like Canelo over Tim Ta-Zoo. Who is Tim Ta-Zoo? Australia knows, but not the world of boxing.
“He’s not a legitimate champion. He fought (Carlos) Ocampo. Who is Ocampo? He didn’t fight dog tough, hard, hard fights. So keep on going. Maybe he’ll get the opportunity. But I’m the man. I’m the one who did it in boxing. Tim Ta-Zoo didn’t do nothing in boxing. Tell him to stay humble, keep quiet, and time will tell.”