By Keith Idec
LAS VEGAS – Shawn Porter senses Errol Spence Jr. doesn’t consider him a serious threat.
Porter predicted that’ll be the biggest advantage he’ll have over Spence when they enter the ring September 28 at Staples Center in Los Angeles. The WBC welterweight champion claims Spence sees him as an inferior fighter who doesn’t have what it takes to win their welterweight title unification match.
“Honestly, I think probably the fact that he may be underestimating me,” Porter said during a press conference. “I think that’s gonna be the No. 1 thing. I don’t think he’s really aware of what I can do in the ring. You know, to put it on one thing – speed or quickness or power, agility, something like that – I just think that it’s the total package. And I think that there’s a disconnect from him on my total package. I don’t think that he’s really seeing it.”
Spence disputed Porter’s opinion. The unbeaten IBF welterweight champion contends he expects a rough, physical fight from an opponent who defeated Danny Garcia by unanimous decision two fights ago.
“I’m definitely not underestimating Shawn Porter,” Spence said. “Because I feel like once we get in the ring, it’s over. The only person that can save you is the white towel or the referee. So, I’m definitely not underestimating him. I always train hard. I’m always focused. And, you know, I’m always training for a 12-round, grueling fight. So, I’m not underestimating him. But I’m gonna tell you the truth – I feel like I’m more skillful than him. I’m more athletic.”
Later in the press conference, Spence predicted he’ll knock out Porter.
Las Vegas’ Porter, 31, has lost only on points to former IBF champ Kell Brook and ex-WBA/WBC champ Keith Thurman. Brook beat Porter by majority decision in August 2014 and Thurman topped Porter by unanimous decision in a very competitive fight in June 2016.
“You’ll see a man down,” Spence said. “You know my motto – man down! Man Down Promotions. That’s what I live by. That’s what I do. But like said, it’s gonna be a different fight from the Mikey Garcia fight. I showed you my boxing IQ. I showed you I have skills, I can box, I can get on my toes. This fight, I’m reverting back to the old me. I want this to be a real brutal fight. I want it to be an action-packed fight. And, you know, I know Shawn’s gonna come to fight. I’m not underestimating him at all. It’s gonna be a great fight.”
The 12-round, 147-pound title bout between Spence (25-0, 21 KOs), of DeSoto, Texas, and Porter (30-2-1, 17 KOs), of Akron, Ohio, will headline a FOX Sports Pay-Per-View telecast.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.