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Brook wants Thurman vs. Porter winner

Keith Thurman Kell Brook Shawn Porter

By Scott Gilfoid: IBF welterweight champion Kell Brook (36-0, 25 KOs) says he wants to fight the winner of this Saturday’s fight between WBA World welterweight champion Keith “One Time” Thurman (26-0, 22 KOs) and Shawn Porter (26-1-1-1, 16 KOs) at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. The Porter vs. Thurman fight will be televised on Showtime Boxing.

Brook thinks Porter will defeat Thurman on Saturday. Brook says he would then like to take on Porter in a rematch. However, Brook still has a fight scheduled on September 3 against WBO 147lb champion Jessie Vargas (27-1, KOs) that he needs to win first before he can start thinking of another unification match. Brook says he would also like to fight WBC welterweight champion Danny Garcia as well.

Brook’s goal is to unify all the 147lb titles before moving up to junior middleweight. However, unless he can steer around the talented #2 IBF Errol Spence Jr. (20-0, 17 KOs) long enough to make his unification dreams come true, it’s very likely that Brook will give up on his goal of unifying the welterweight titles and move up to junior middleweight division once he’s cornered by Spence.

“I think most people are saying Thurman but I can see Porter grinding him down, outworking him over the 12 rounds and nicking it,” said Brook to skysports.com. “I’d love to fight Danny Garcia as well but also the winner of Thurman-Porter will have the WBA title, so I would love to fight the winner. I want to look at taking all them belts and being involved in some fantastic fights before moving up in weight.”

The International Boxing Federation is going to let Brook fight the unification match against Vargas in September, but it’s unclear how many voluntary defenses they’re going to let Brook have after that. If he’s just going to look to unify over and over again rather than defend against his challengers, then the IBF is going to need to step in at some point and order Brook to fight his mandatory again. I think the sanctioning bodies see the unification fights as being in the same category as voluntary defenses. They’ll let a champion take a voluntary defense, but they’re probably not going to let him make a career out of fighting unification fights while ignoring the top contenders.

Brook is going to need to get back to the reality of being the IBF belt holder and that means defending it against Spence after he beats 41-year-old Leonard Bundu on August 21. I hate to call any fight a slam dunk win for a fighter, but I see this as a really easy win for Spence. The 5’6” Bundu is short, older, non-mobile, and doesn’t have punching power. Bundu is a stationary fighter that likes to fight on the inside. If you were to create the perfect opponent for Spence to demolish in short order, it would have to be Bundu.

Well, as far as Brook’s pipe dream about him unifying the belts at 147, I don’t see it happening. I don’t think Danny Garcia will fight him, and I doubt the winner of the Thurman vs. Porter fight will fight him either unless it’s Porter. Thurman can’t be pressured to fight different guys, because he fights the guys his manager Al Haymon presents him. I don’t think Haymon is going to give the green light to a unification fight against Brook, because it’s not a big fight in the U.S due to Brook not being well known there.

Haymon also manages Danny Garcia and Spence. If anything, we might see Spence fight the winner of the Thurman vs. Porter fight, which would be a good thing for Brook because he wouldn’t have to worry about fighting Spence any longer. He would be completely out of his hair. Of course, if Spence beats the winner of the Thurman-Porter fight, it would out Brook in a situation where he would need to be consistent by saying he wants to unify the titles by facing Spence as well.

Brook, 30, defeated Porter by a close 12 round majority decision two years ago in August 2014 to win the IBF 147lb title. The judges scored the fight 116-112, 117-111 and 114-114-114. I had the fight scored 117-111 for Porter. I couldn’t give Brook the win because he was holding over 10 times per round, and getting nailed over and over again by Porter on the inside. Porter landed more shots by far in the fight from what I saw, and Brook was reduced to clinching nonstop to try and slow down his work rate. The MMA approach that Brook used in the fight made it a very dull fight to watch.

“I am going to shock you and pick Porter,” said Thurman. “I could definitely tell when I was in there with him [Porter] that he was the best guy I’d been in there with. He was so hungry and you could tell he was a genuine champion, so I had to take him very seriously, round-by-round.”

As I was saying, Brook was holding all night long in his fight against Porter, and fighting exactly how Adrien Broner did in his fight against him. We saw gawd awful nonstop holding from Brook, and it was so sad to see the referee working that fight not getting on his J-O-B and penalizing Brook for the holding. When boxing fans see fights, they don’t want to see a fighter gaming the system the way Brook did against Porter by using clinching repeatedly. What we saw Brook use was in basketball terms called the ‘stall.” He was stalling out the fight by holding Porter to keep him from being able to throw punches. In basketball, you see teams stalling out a game by passing it or fouling continuously to keep the other team from being able to shoot. It’s very ugly to watch and that sport needs major rule changes to prevent that kind of thing. In boxing, the referee is supposed to control stuff like excessive holding, but when the referee fails to do his job in preventing that kind of stuff, then you see what a fighter stalling out the fight like we saw with Brook in the Porter fight.




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