By Keith Idec
Danny Garcia plans to use Shawn Porter’s aggression against him Saturday night.
As a counter-puncher, Garcia expects to catch Porter as the former IBF welterweight champion comes forward and tries to get inside during their 12-round, 147-pound title fight at Barclays Center in Brooklyn. The 31-year-old Porter hasn’t been knocked in 10 years as a pro, but Garcia has pointed out that he has become the first foe to knock out several of his previous opponents.
“Shawn’s style is exactly what I like to go up against,” Garcia said Wednesday following an open workout at Gleason’s Gym in Brooklyn. “I want him to come forward and walk into my counter-punching. I have power in both hands and I’m gonna make him feel it.”
Philadelphia’s Garcia (34-1, 20 KOs), known for his left hook, knocked out Brandon Rios with a right hand in the ninth round February 17 in Las Vegas. He feels he’ll have chances to hurt Porter (28-2-1, 17 KOs) early in their fight for the vacant WBC welterweight title an injured Keith Thurman gave up late in April.
“If he comes and opens up, I’m gonna land a clean shot early,” Garcia said. “If he can’t recover, then I’m gonna have a chance to finish him. I’m gonna dictate the pace and fight my fight.”
Las Vegas’ Porter predicted Wednesday that his ability to employ multiple strategies will frustrate Garcia. The former WBC welterweight champ promised that he has prepared for however Porter approaches him.
“I’m ready for anything,” Garcia said. “I’m prepared to fight backwards, forwards or whatever I need to do. I have to set the tempo and dominate. Shawn is very hungry, so it’s important for me to be smart and pick my spots.
“I know he’s gonna try to jab his way in. Shorter guys like him tend to go to the body, too. He has skills, but I’ve had great preparation to be ready for any of it. We have some stuff up our sleeve.”
Garcia-Porter will headline Showtime’s tripleheader, which will include a 10-round heavyweight battle between Brooklyn’s Adam Kownacki (17-0, 14 KOs) and Charles Martin (25-1-1, 23 KOs), a former IBF champion from Carson, California. This three-bout broadcast is set to start at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT with a 12-round WBC welterweight elimination bout that’ll match Cuba’s Yordenis Ugas (23-3, 11 KOs) against Argentina’s Cesar Barrionuevo (34-3-2, 24 KOs).
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.