ThaBoxingVoice’s Sean Zittel was able to sit down and talk with former IBF welterweight champion Shawn Porter to discuss how his loss to Kell Brook has changed his approach and what he expects in 2015. As part of Al Haymon’s stable of fighters, Porter expects more fights than his 2 fight 2014.
In August 2014, Shawn Brook lost his IBF welterweight title to current champion Kell Brook, in a majority decision. During the fight, Brook was able to control range with his jab and pot-shot a charging Shawn Porter all night long. It became clear that Porter, a fighter that became a champion on athleticism and tenacity, did not yet possess the boxing acumen to shift gears and change strategy in the middle of a fight. Porter admits as much when the fight is brought up.
Porter said, “You gotta learn from that, you gotta learn how to, you know use great defense at all times… That’s what we’re doing now, working every day on trying to become better proficient boxer instead of just brawling, or just being fast and just being athletic. We’re working on the basic fundamentals as well as the most professional part of this sport, which is being strategic…”
It’s nice to see a fighter of Porter’s level being realistic about what he thinks he must improve in order to compete at a higher level. He will need this increased boxing IQ as he goes forward, especially with the busier schedule Al Haymon is looking to give his fighters in 2015. When questioned about how the new TV deals are going to affect him, Porter did not hesitate to express his enthusiasm for a busier schedule than what he had in 2014.
Porter on having 3 or 4 fights in 2015; “It sounds good. I wanna be active. We always wanted it to be that way; I don’t sit down when I’m not fightin’ so I’m always in the gym, and I’m always ready to go… So you know, [as long as] we get blessed with this fight, we come out, you know uh, nice and healthy… We look to get back in the ring in 2, three months and just keep it movin’ from there.”
Returning back to the idea that Shawn Porter is looking to become a more well-rounded fighter and employ more strategy over brute force. The question remains whether he will be able to control himself and apply what he has learned in his upcoming fight with Roberto Garcia. Porter assures us that he will fight smarter while still putting on a show.
“[Roberto Garcia] is a very um, aggressive fighter. He likes to come forward, and he likes to punch so we want to first establish that we can’t be hit, we’re going to use our speed but then we are also going to, at points, want to mix in, you know the hard shots to the body and control him and let’em know who’s boss in there…”
It will be interesting to see if Shawn Porter will be able to keep his instincts in check. Apply the kind of strategy he knows he will need to be a top contender in the sport for years to come. Roberto Garcia will be a good test, with his “come forward” style that simply begs for a brawl. Will Porter revert back to his more aggressive ways under the bright lights of Haymon’s March 13th, premier episode of PBC on Spike TV?