The world will be watching when Errol Spence Jr. and Danny Garcia face off for welterweight gold this weekend. One former champion will especially be keeping a close eye on the bout, as the future of the division rests on this fight.
Shawn Porter is ready to watch a battle between two fighters he is very familiar with. If Spence, the IBF and WBC welterweight champion, was to win, everyone is hoping he faces off against WBO welterweight champion Terence Crawford. Could Porter end up getting between those plans?
Speaking on The Jake Asman Show on SportsMap Radio, Porter discussed his options within the division. If he had a choice, “Showtime” would want to try something new.
“I am in a blessed position,” Porter stated. “I am the mandatory for the WBO title held by Terence Crawford, and I’m also the mandatory challenger for the IBF and WBC Titles… Honestly, I’ll fight whoever. The preference is Terence Crawford, simply because you guys have not seen me against Terence. You know, it was a good, close fight with Errol Spence Jr. and a good, close fight with Danny Garcia. Styles make fights, and now my style needs to be set up with Terence Crawford.”
Porter faced Garcia back in 2018 to win the then-vacant WBC welterweight title. In his fourth straight fight inside the Barclays Center, Porter won via unanimous decision. He defended the title against Yordenis Ugas before facing Spence in September 2019. In a fight of the year candidate, both fighters went the distance in California. It was Spence who ended up winning via split decision.
When it comes to training for both opponents, Spence stated that he was able to beat Garcia because he trained for and got what he expected. As for Spence, Porter had an understanding that Spence wasn’t as good as he was in the past. He would reassure himself of that during some aspects of the fight. As far as how the fight could go, especially following a car crash that almost ended Spence’s career, Porter gave an interesting take on it. He does believe Spence made the right decision in taking a big fight, even after multiple facial lacerations. The fight could go either way, even with a long layoff.
“I think it is important for Danny to start fast,” Porter went on to say. “I think it’s important for Danny to be in Errol Spence’s grill, be in his face. Even if he isn’t aggressive and putting Errol against the ropes and banging him up for 12 rounds, I think he definitely has to get in Errol’s face and let Errol know that there is nowhere he can go that Danny won’t be. I think Danny needs to make him understand very, very quickly that he’s in a fight.
“On the other side, I think as long as Errol uses his jab, uses his boxing ability, I think that it’s a fight that he can win, even though he’s coming off of a long layoff.“
Crawford recently fought in November, beating Kell Brook via TKO to retain his title for the fourth time.
During an Instagram live session a few months back, Porter stated that he and Crawford had talked about fighting one another earlier this year. This was before the coronavirus pandemic shut plans down. There were also talks of him facing Spence in a rematch before Spence’s car accident not long after their fight.
Porter finally returned to action in August, beating Sebastian Formella via unanimous decision. He believes that was the perfect fight to bring him back to the top, regardless of the outcome this weekend.