“Showtime” Shawn Porter opened up his training camp to media Thursday at Porter Hy-Performance Center in Las Vegas as he prepares for his primetime showdown with Keith “One Time” Thurman on Saturday, March 12 ofrom Mohegan Sun Resort in Connecticut.
On training camp…
“Training camp is going great. It’s been hard work as always and nothing really different specifically for this fight. Obviously it is always a different game plan for a different fighter but that’s about it.
“I’m not making too many adjustments from my previous fight, just taking what I learn from each fight and take those learning experiences with you. Going into this fight we will definitely have some of our past experiences show up.
“It is getting closer. I feel it every day. It’s approaching and the excitement is brewing. The closer it gets the more excited and more focused that I get.
On being perceived as the underdog…
“I do not feel like I am coming in as the underdog. In order to be the champion, you have to beat the champion. That is my outlook on this fight, not only to outpoint him but to make it very decisive and dominate the fight.
“My motivation is to prove the doubters wrong.
“I have faced a tougher opposition than Keith Thurman. I feel like that may work most to my advantage. I think that there will come points in this fight where I will put him up against things that he has never been up against. It is all about how he reacts to what I throw at him.
“My plan is to go in there and shake him up, make him uncomfortable and carry the fight just like that.
“I am ready and whatever Thurman has to bring. I’m ready for 12 rounds, I’m ready to knock him out. I’m ready to do whatever it takes to win. I’m ready.
On sparring with Thurman…
“We expect what we saw in sparring with him to show up in the fight. He moved around a lot when we sparred. There weren’t very many clean shots landed by either of us, but I know from sparring with him that I have to be aggressive and that I have to cutoff the ring.
“I would say that for the majority of this fight it is probably going to be me as the aggressor. He likes to bully guys at the beginning of the fight to wear them down to feel himself out.. We’re expecting him to move a lot more against me.
“We’re going to be aggressive, we’re going to be smart, we’re looking beyond this fight.
“In my last fight I didn’t get hit very much and I am taking that same mindset and defense into this fight.
On being the next Floyd Mayweather Jr…
“I am expecting to beat Keith and be the guy that everyone looks at.
“When you go up against someone at a high level like this, you go up and you show out.
“As far as Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao, I think those faces are going away. The welterweight class is exciting and there’s going to be a new face on the top of that ranking. I’d like that face to be me.
“I don’t make any predictions; I just know I am going to win.
“I have been waiting for this fight since 2013. I had just gotten my title then and I could see the way his career was moving that there was a collision course. We didn’t know how long this fight would take to happen or when it would happen, but we knew it was coming.
“When I was told this fight was happening all I could think was ‘Ok, let’s do it’ and it took some time to make the fight happen but when we finally did our faceoff, it felt great to look him in the eyes and let him know ‘I’m coming after you.’
“For me to fight Keith it has always been something that was a part of my career, all business not personal. It was just something that I needed to do to get to where I want to be.
“Keith Thurman is a good fighter. Nothing really sticks out to me as something I should worry about. He’s a good athlete and a good boxer, but he is very beatable, he just hasn’t been beat yet.
“You’re only as good as you’re last competition. If you look at the Kell Brook fight, I was not as good as I should’ve been. Since then I am very good, but still I feel that you are only as good as your last fight until you prove otherwise.
“It is and isn’t personal. For Keith to be considered one of the top dogs in this weight class, it is personal to me to beat him and reign over him. Other than that, it is all business.”
On being his son’s trainer…
“Because I have the history of working with a lot of top-level amateurs who have moved on to the professional level, I think that Shawn sees that in me as an edge.”
On his history with Keith Thurman…
“I know him very well. I’ve had opportunities to work with him in the amateurs. I’ve had opportunities to work with him in the pros. I’ve worked in his corner in an amateur fight before, I’ve worked in his corner in a pro fight.
“Keith knows Shawn, they’ve sparred about 30 rounds. He knows speed and won’t come in the ring trying to land a significant shot from the beginning. If he’s throwing that punch, he’s probably running the other direction at the same time.
“I would challenge [Thurman] to come in the ring and fight, but I know he’s going to fight. I know he will try to outbox us and try to land a slick and unexpected punch. Anyone can land a shot on you, that happens, but it’s what you do after the punch that counts.
“We’re looking forward to trading punches, boxing with him, slugging with him. We’re looking for a fight.”
On what it will take to win this fight…
“At this point in time, there’s going to be a lot of adjustments that have to be made, and I can’t just determine what it’s going to take to do it, but I know it’s going to take everything – speed, quickness, power, aggressiveness, conditioning, making adjustments mentally – it’s an intellectual fight.”