Thurman: Porter’s Punches Can Hurt Spence
IBF welterweight champion Errol Spence Jr. is considered arguably the most powerful puncher in the division and a knockout artist. But a fellow top-level welterweight says he should be careful and not write off the punching power of WBC champion Shawn Porter in their September 28 title unification bout.
Spence has knocked out 21 of his 25 opponents, significantly higher compared to Porter, who has only had 17 of his 30 wins come by KO/TKO. In fact, Spence won his IBF crown a couple of years ago by finishing Kell Brook, who defeated Porter for the title by decision in 2014.
But former WBA and WBC welterweight champion Keith Thurman warns Spence and boxing critics that Porter cannot be taken for granted — not only because of his noted heart and chin, but also for his own power.
Thurman and Porter faced off in a WBA title fight in 2016, with Thurman coming away in a close unanimous decision.
“I know he has the power to hurt people in the ring as well,” Thurman told Boxing Scene. “A lot of times he jumps in and he smothers himself, but every once in a while, he can hurt you. I’ve watched him fight since he was 17 years old. He was competing at 165, so size is not an issue.
He’s strong, he’s rugged and he has always competed against the best. And we’re just gonna see how this 12-round championship bout goes down.
Thurman still feels Spence will come out on top in the pay-per-view title fight and that Porter is still a tier below athletes like him, Spence and WBA champion Manny Pacquiao.
Thurman, however, wants to see how Spence will handle Porter’s style and power, let alone high pain tolerance.
“I’m interested in it because I know what Shawn can do,” Thurman said. “He can make you feel uncomfortable in there, and I wanna see his performance now, over his last performance, because I wasn’t a fan of his last performance, with the outside boxing against [Yordenis] Ugas. I think he loses in that format, so I wanna see if he brings the intensity that he brought me three years ago in Barclays [Center] to Errol Spence.
If he does, we’re in for a more competitive fight. And Errol’s dominated a lot, so I think if Shawn makes it so that Errol does not dominate him in the fight, then even if he was to lose he’ll get a lot of respect because he still might be Errol’s toughest fight to date.
Original Story: Boxing Scene