Keith Thurman vs. Shawn Porter is the proverbial pick ’em boxing match.
And the stakes are high: as they are fighting for the right to wear the WBA welterweight championship belt recently relinquished by Floyd “Money” Mayweather.
How do I think this fight will shake out?
In a fight that is extremely tough to call, logic suggests that the slightly taller, longer and harder-hitting Thurman should be able to do just enough to stave off the bull-rushing, “close quarters” attacks that are the signature of any Porter bout.
The Case for Shawn Porter
But as Devon Alexander (UD 12), Paulie Malignaggi (TKO 4) and Adrien Broner (UD 12) all found out, playing the successful matador to the pit bull that is Shawn Porter, is no easy task. Despite his highly-physical and pressure-packed fighting style, he’s very well-trained by his dad (Kenny Porter) and is backed by a highly-impressive amateur resume. In short, Thurman has his hands more than full.
The Case for Keith Thurman
With a glossy 26-0 record with 22 KO’s (81% KO rate), Thurman appears to have a solid advantage over Porter, who has already lost once, drawn once, and KO’d only 57% of his opponents. However, I don’t feel that Thurman’s professional numbers are where the gap lies.
Although I believe that Thurman hits harder (albeit against lesser competition), his biggest assets are his adaptability and ring generalship. He can brawl a little as well as box a little, and he clearly has the better legs of the two fighters. His movement is the x-factor in this bout.
So who I am taking in this fight?
I like both fighters and I feel that both are evenly-matched. I can see this fight ending in a draw, but if I am forced to pick a winner, I am leaning towards the slight underdog, Shawn Porter, based on his stiffer competition to-date.
His success (and failures) against the “best-of-the-best” in the 140-147 weight range, will tip the advantage in his favor, ever-so-slightly, on June 26 in Brooklyn, New York.
Shawn Porter UD12 Keith Thurman