Inglewood, Calif., September 8, 2018 – Boxing fans love knockouts, but sometimes a fight is so good you wouldn’t want to see it end short of a full 12 rounds of action. Saturday’s contest between “Showtime” Shawn Porter and Danny “Swift” Garcia in Brooklyn fulfilled every expectation, with both fighters having strong rounds and both showing their individual skill sets at their best.
By the final bell, most observers gave the edge to Porter, and the judges agreed in a unanimous decision. Scores were 116-112, and 115-113 X 2.
Porter outworks Garcia for the victory
Garcia got out of the gate more quickly, but Porter came roaring back a few rounds in, and the fight swung back and forth, neither man getting out ahead of the other. Porter’s work rate increased significantly in the middle rounds, and this is where he just plain outworked Garcia. Garcia couldn’t seem to find the right time to pull the trigger the way he pictured in his head, and this is largely responsible for him losing the fight. Porter threw nearly 300 more punches overall than Garcia. According to CompuBox, Porter landed 180 of 742 total punches (24 perent); Garcia landed 168 of 472 (36%) total punches. Garcia had a small advantage in power punches – 139 of 304 (46%). Porter landed 134 of 544 (25%).
Porter has lost several close fights on the cards; Garcia has won several close fights on cards. It somehow seemed fitting for Porter to finally get the nod. No one would ever describe Porter’s fighting style as elegant, and plenty describe it as dirty. Porter can be all head and forearms at times. For this fight, he dialed a bit of this back, and instead was determined to be the busiest fighter in the ring, versus being the most accurate. The strategy worked.
“I knew he would be accurate,” said Porter. “The game plan was for me to be accurate from the outside, show I could win without beating him up on the ropes. We (father/trainer Kenny Porter) studied veru well for him. We were ready for his hook, his wild right hands. He did a great job tonight. but I’m blessed.”
A disappointed Garcia naturally disagreed. “He was throwing a lot on the insidfe, but I had my defense tight. I thought I landed the more cleaner shots, and I thought I won the fight.” Garcia didn’t have any immediate plans for the future, saying he would take some time to think it over.
Porter’s next opponent: Errol Spence Jr. most likely
Although the WBC welterweight title now in Porter’s hands used to belong to Keith Thurman, there are now promotional issues which would make the matchup difficult. No matter; the top active man in the division, IBF titleholder Errol Spence Jr., was ringside and told Porter in the ring after the fight he’d be more than happy to be his next dance partner. “Guess what, y’all? This is going to be the easiest fight to make in boxing right here,” said Porter. “I feel like I’m the best in the welterweight division,” replied Spence. “I’m Errol Spence, The Truth. I guarantee I will go home with the WBC belt. I want this fight.” So do we – but Shawn Porter has earned the right to enjoy it and have it to himself for a little while.
Women’s boxing history made by Amanda Serrano
Amanda Serrano of Puerto Rico (35-1-1. 25 KOs) made history, winning the WBO World super lightweight title in a record sixth weight class. Serrano is the first female boxer to ever reach this achievment.
Serrano dominated Yamila Esther Reynoso of Argenina (11-5-3, 8 KOs), winning a near shutout on the cards by three scores of 99-91. She has a diversified attack, and if women fought more than two minutes a round, her knockout percentage would be even higher.
How about giving her some premium TV time for her next fight? Serrano and Reynoso would have been far more entertaining than Ugas and Barrionueva.
Kownacki remains undefeated with unanimous decision over Martin
Brooklyn’s Polish prince Adam Kownacki (17-0, 14 KOs) and fellow big man Charles Martin (25-1-1, 23 KOs) of Carson, California delivered the heavyweight brawl fans expected. Kownacki prevailed in a unanimous decision due to his early activity and better work rate over the 10 rounds. All three cards had it 96-94.
Kownacki got off to a faster start, and it looked as if he might stop Martin early. Give credit to Martin, he stayed in (unlike Curtis Harper, and no we aren’t tired of this reference yet). As Kownacki started to slow down, Martin won the middle rounds of the fight. In the final rounds, Kownacki did enough to get the edge on the cards, though neither looked like they would have been able to make it through 12 rounds.
Could we now get a cross-town rivalry fight between Kownacki and his Brooklyn brother and friend, Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller? These two would make the lead-up so wildly entertaining with their bigger than life personalities, the fight might be a little anti-climactic. They are both undefeated, so the stakes alone would get them some attention.
Ugas wins a snoozer over Barrionueva
Regrettably, Yordenis Ugas of Cuba (23-3, 11 KOs) and Cesar Barrionueva of Argentina (34-4-2) took the air out of the room before the main event with their uninspired contest. Ugas took the unaimous decision a single round shy of a shutout on one card, with scores of 120-108 X 2 and 119-109. That’s called a mercy round, friends. Ugas nearly doubled Barrionueva’s punch output and connect rate. He did some nice body work, but otherwise there was no reason to watch. Barrionueva really had no reason being in the ring, other than to give Ugas another one in the win column since losses to Amir Imam and Emmanual Robles. At least it gave the 13,058 fans watching at the Barclays Center and at home a chance to refresh their drinks and snacks before the main event.
Gayle Lynn Falkenthal, APR, is President/Owner of the Falcon Valley Group in San Diego, California. She is a veteran boxing observer covering the Sweet Science for Communities. Read more Ringside Seat in Communities Digital News. Follow Gayle on Facebook and on Twitter @PRProSanDiego.
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