Errol Spence, Shawn Porter trade words ahead of welterweight unification
With just weeks to go until their blockbuster welterweight title unification, IBF Champion Errol “The Truth” Spence Jr. and WBC Champion “Showtime” Shawn Porter had a heated series of exchanges on “PBC Face to Face” as they went back and forth previewing their showdown that headlines a FOX Sports PBC Pay-Per-View event on Saturday, September 28 from STAPLES Center in Los Angeles.
Spence Jr. and Porter both predicted knockout wins in their quests become a unified champion, a win that would bring the victor one step closer to their goal of becoming the undisputed top welterweight in the world.
Tickets for the event, which is promoted by Man Down Promotions, TGB Promotions and Shawn Porter Promotions, are on sale now and can be purchased at AXS.com.
A two-time welterweight champion, Porter captured the WBC belt last September with a win over Danny Garcia and defended it on FOX with a victory over Yordenis Ugas in March. Porter plans to use his status as the veteran of numerous title fights on the biggest stages to eventually overwhelm his opponent on September 28.
“I’m expecting to break Errol Spence in a lot of different ways,” said Porter. “I’m expecting this to be the fight that comes as a wakeup call for his career.
“Any top notch fighter or any fighter that’s talked about for a long time and who you’ve seen win over crowds in the ring, that’s who I am. As a fighter, I’m prepared to do whatever it takes to leave a grand mark in my era. I will not be denied and that’s what makes me so good as a fighter.”
A highly-touted U.S. Olympian coming out of the 2012 games, Spence has lived up to the promise and became a welterweight champion in 2017 by stopping then unbeaten Kell Brook in the U.K. Since then he has made three successful defenses, including his most recent triumph over four-division champion Mikey Garcia in a FOX Sports PBC Pay-Per-View in March, and he will look to leave it all in the ring on his path to becoming a unified champion.
“I already have it in my head that I want to punish Shawn and get an impressive knockout,” said Spence. “Nothing he can say can stop me. That’s my mentality come September 28.
“I have a lot of dog in me, I’m a guy who always comes to fight. I’m going to do what it takes to win.”
Catch the “PBC Face to Face” replay on FS1 this Sunday, September 8 at 9 p.m. ET and on FS2 tomorrow, Friday, September 6 at 11 p.m. ET and again on Saturday, September 7 at 12:30 p.m. ET and 9:30 p.m. ET. Here are some of the top exchanges from the show between the two welterweight champions:
On going from “from friends to foes” after a relationship dating back to their amateur days:
Shawn Porter: “I wouldn’t say I’ve shifted, but when he said he wants to fight me, I’m like ‘let’s go’. This is what we do. This is what we signed up for. But you know just like I know, it’s time to take care of business.”
Errol Spence Jr.: “This is something that I’ve wanted for a long time. To be a unified champion. To have that WBC Belt. I’m more loyal to my dream and to my job than I am to a friendship. This is how I put food on my family’s table.”
On their Las Vegas press conference on July 20 where Spence declared he would knock Porter out:
Porter: “I heard you, and I heard you clearly. Was there hesitation? Possibly. Do you really believe it? I don’t know. The fact remains that I am who I’ve always been. Nobody’s ever knocked me out. You can say what you want to say, but doing something is completely different.”
Spence:“My mom always said there’s a first time for everything. You’ve never been knocked out before? That’s cool. Everybody knows that I can knock him out. That’s something that I’m willing to do, that’s what I’m training for and that’s something that very likely could happen come September 28.”
On the Porter family’s familiarity with Spence (Shawn’s father and Trainer Ken trained Spence during a portion of his amateur career)
Porter: “From 2012 to now a lot of things can change and I’m sure a lot of things have changed. I do feel that in some ways, we have a good insight, but not a complete insight on who Errol Spence Jr. is and what he’s capable of.”
Spence: “You can go back and look at amateur tapes and see why I lost, but at the end of the day, you’re going to be in a real fight. I’m looking to punish him from the first round until I stop him. I’m looking to make history. I’m looking to be the best. That’s why I took on this challenge and that’s’ why I wanted to fight Shawn Porter.”
On if Spence has enough respect for Porter heading into this fight
Porter: “No, but he has the respect that he needs. The respect he needs is to understand that ‘if I’m going to beat Shawn Porter, I have to punish him.’ Those are the same words that are being said in my camp. We’re talking about punishing you. We’re talking about taking you to the deep waters and drowning you. We’re talking about hitting you and hurting you. We’re talking about hitting you with things you’ve never felt before. It’s nothing new, but the talking is done pretty soon, and we’ll have to get it on.”
Spence: “I know what he comes with. He’s aggressive and will try to take me to deep waters. That all sounds good, but everybody knows that I come in great shape. I throw a lot of punches. I can do it all. They can try to drown me, but you might be the one getting drowned.”
Porter: “I’ve been in the ring against guys who hit hard and I had to keep going until I come out on top, on the bottom or however it goes. The fact remains the same, I’m never going to stop. You can say you’re going to do this, you’re going to do that, but do you really have what it takes to stop me?”
On Spence’s fight against Mikey Garcia
Spence: “They said if it was a tactical fight, Mikey Garcia was going to beat me. They said it all throughout the whole presser and through the lead up to the fight. And I made sure that I was going to show my skillset, my talent and my abilities, not only physically, but mentally, just my whole skill set. And I’ve been saying that.
Porter: “You came on my show ‘INSIDE PBC BOXING’ sat next to me, and I said, ‘Were you mad that you didn’t knock him out?’ You said: ‘Yeah, I was a little mad.’ I said: ‘Oh, I’m surprised. I would have thought the opposite. I didn’t think you will be mad.’ You said: ‘Well yeah, I wanted to knock him out.’ Now you’re saying you didn’t want to hurt him?”
Spence Jr.: “Did I say the whole time I was going to knock him out? Through the whole lead up to the fight, did I say I going to knock him out? Now I’m saying I’m going to knock you out.”
Porter: “That’s what you’re supposed say. That’s how you’re supposed to feel.”
Spence Jr.: “You going to be swinging wild and you’ll just miss. I am going to punish you. Watch.”
Porter: “The blessed part about it is, I’m not banking on that to beat you. I’m not banking on my will. I’m not banking on my heart.”
Spence Jr.: “But the best thing about that is I’m better than you talent wise, skill wise, and I know I’ve got more talent than you. You’re going to find out on September 28.”
Porter: “Guess we’re going to find out.”
On the role of experience in this fight
Porter: “I don’t think you’ve been in the ring with anyone that has made you adapt, has made you make adjustments, has made you get out of your comfort zone, and on September 28, that’s exactly what I plan to do.”
Spence Jr.: “He doesn’t have the skills to beat me. I’m not worried about Shawn boxing like he did with Ugas, or what he did with Danny Garcia. He’s going to have no choice but to come forward.”
Porter: “What do you trust that’s telling you that’s the only way I can beat you?”
Spence Jr.: “Like I said, you’re going to have no choice but to come forward. Period. You’ll find out September 28.”
Porter: “I want to know where the confidence comes from.”
Spence Jr.: “The confidence comes within me, I’m going to punish you, man. I promise you that.”
On fighting for the top spot in the welterweight division
Porter: “1, 2, 3. Make them however you want to make them. Shawn Porter, Errol Spence, Manny Pacquiao. After this right here, there’s only two.”
Spence Jr.: “I want to be a legend a sport. And he’s in my way. So, I’m not thinking about Manny Pacquiao right now. Shawn Porter is first.”
Porter: “You can still have your legacy and everything, I’m just going to slow you down a little bit.”
Spence Jr.: “We’ll see. I’m going to put you on my resume.”
On getting the win by stoppage on September 28
Porter: “I most definitely can stop him. It’s all about timing. Everything you send to me, I’m going to shoot it right back at you. The difference is I’m willing, I’m capable of doing it when we get in the ring. I don’t think you are.”
Spence Jr.: “It doesn’t matter what you say. You can lie to yourself all you want.”
Porter: “I’ll come out and knock you out in the first round. It’s still going to be exciting. People are still going to be on their feet. It’s going to be one of the most exciting knockouts of the year. I’m making it plain and simple, baby. No matter how this fight goes, I’m leaving the ring with the belt. And because you are who you are, it’s going to be exciting watching me.”
Spence Jr.: “You’re not. You’re going to be congratulating me as a unified champ. That’s what you’re going to do.”
Porter: “However he lets it end, it’s going to be with me winning.”
Spence Jr.: “This fight ends in a spectacular knockout by me. I’m going to punish him. I’m going to beat him up mentally and physically. I’m going to have him distraught in the ring. Then, I’m finishing him.”