Derrick James On Jermell’s Weight: “Speed & Athleticism Is His Advantage”

Derrick James: "I Don't Think He Should Gain Too Much Weight!"

Collage of Derrick James Canelo Alvarez and Jermell Charlo
Derrick James (Credit: Showtime Boxing) | Canelo Alvarez (Credit: Ulises Ruiz/Getty Images) | Jermell Charlo (Credit: PBC)

Derrick James Says Smaller Jermell Charlo Is An Advantage!

On September 30, undisputed junior middleweight champion Jermell “Iron Man” Charlo (35-1-1, 19 KOs) will jump up two weight classes to fight undisputed super middleweight champion Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (59-2-2, 39 KOs). A lot of focus will be on the weight of Charlo. His trainer, Derrick James, believes that the junior middleweight champion to be light and in supreme shape to give himself the best chance of winning.


Charlo is a big 154-pounder. Some in the boxing community feel that the 33-year-old would be physically stronger and hit harder at the higher weight. Speaking to Fight Hub TV, James warned about his fighter putting on unnecessary weight for his upcoming fight.

“I believe it’s about speed and athleticism, so I don’t think he should gain too much weight. I don’t think he should come in at 168 for no reason at all. Your abilities and your athleticism is what your advantage is. That’s the key element. You don’t take away what your advantage is.”

Derrick James – Trainer For Jermell Charlo

James wants Charlo to come in at either 163 or 164 pounds.’s Trainer of the Year for 2022, said that if Charlo were to add any additional weight, it could potentially cause him to be slow and sluggish.


*Iron Man has been out of action since a tenth-round stoppage over Brian Castano to become the undisputed junior middleweight champion in May 2022. It was thought that Charlo would defend the 154-pound titles against WBO Interim champion Tim Tszyu next. However, when presented with the opportunity to face Alvarez, Charlo accepted the fight without hesitation.

He’s facing a bigger and stronger fighter in Alvarez. Nevertheless, there are insiders who think the super middleweight champion is on the decline, and Charlo is fighting him at just the right time. If Iron Man can handle the size of Canelo, and maintain his speed and athletic ability at the higher weight, he could come away with the biggest win of his career.

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About Mike W. 1838 Articles
Mike is the host of boxing podcast "Pound 4 Pound Boxing Report" and is a Senior Writer for