Shawn Porter vs. Andre Berto – Results
By Jeff Aranow: Former IBF welterweight champion “Showtime” Shawn Porter (27-2-1, 17 KOs) mauled former IBF/WBC champion Andre Berto (31-5, 24 KOs) in wearing him down and stopping him in the 9th round on Saturday night at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. Berto was knocked down 3 times in the fight. Once in round 2 and two more times in the 9th round.
Porter hurt Berto with a head-butt in the midway point of round 9. Porter then landed shots that twice sent Berto flying against the ropes. Berto was knocked into the rounds twice in the 9th by Porter for knockdowns. After the second knockdown of Berto in the 9th, the referee halted the fight. The official time of the stoppage was at 1:31 of round 9. At the time of the stoppage, the judge had Porter ahead by the scores 78-73, 79-74 and 79-71. Boxing News 24 had Porter ahead by the score 79-74. It was all Porter from round 2 until the bitter end in the 9th.
(Photo credit: Amanda Westcott/SHOWTIME)
Berto seemed to stop fighting back after Porter bumped heads with him in round 9. It’s unknown if Berto thought the referee was going to give him a timeout or what, but he should have realized that he wasn’t going to be given a break. The referee was letting the fight continue.
The Porter-Berto fight was televised on Showtime Championship Boxing via Premier Boxing Champions.
Both fighters were cut from head clashes. Porter was cut over his left eye in round 2 and then his right eye in round 4. Berto was cut over his left eye in the 4th. The ringside doctor examined Berto’s cut several times at the urging of the referee, but he allowed the fights to continue each time.
After the fight, Porter apologized to Berto for cutting him with the accidental head-butts. Berto was asked by Showtime if he’ll be continuing his boxing career, but he said he needs to think about it. Berto did well at times in the fight, but he seemed to be ineffective after round 1.
“It was competitive until the head-butts got to me,” said Berto after the fight. “It was a rough fight. He made it rough.”
“I can only shake my head for the head-butts. I’m really sorry for that,” said Porter.
“He is my mandatory. It’s going to be a great fight. I look forward to it,” said Keith Thurman. “All we can do is negotiate,’ said Thurman.”
Berto landed 2 big right hands to the head of Porter in the 1st round to take the round. Round 1 was perhaps the best round of the fight for Berto. Porter wasn;t pretty the action at the time, and Berto was able to use his superior hand speed and punching power to pot shot from the outside. If Porter had continued to stay at a distance in the remainder of the fight, Berto would have had a great chance of winning, because he seemed to do well when he separation from Porter. Where Berto had problems was when the two of them were in close, and Porter was roughing him up.
Porter begins to mug Berto beginning in the 2nd round. Porte trapped Berto against the ropes and begin to pummel him with shots. Berto tried to hold Porter, but he kept throwing shots and not letting himself be stifled. Porter had learned his lesson from his fight with Kell Brook 2014. Brook used constant clinching to stop Porter from throwing punches on the inside. Porter didn’t let Berto get away with his clinching. Porter kept throwing shots despite being held. Porter was badly cut over his left eye in round 2. It came from a clash of heads that occurred while he had Berto trapped against the ropes. It was exciting to watch the two fighters trade against the ropes. Porter clearly got the better of the action, but Berto landed some respectable shots.
In the 3rd round, Berto hit Porter with a rabbit punch out of apparent frustration at being forced against the ropes one again. Porter was really working Berto over much of the round with his back against the ropes. It was similar to how Robert Guerrero had been able to beat up Berto after trapping him against the ropes repeatedly in 2012. The round was totally one-sided, as Berto could not keep the action on the outside the way that he needed to. Berto showed good boxing skills when he briefly had the action from the distance, but Porter was able to charge forward and hit him with jabs and right hands that caused Berto to back up frequently.
In between rounds, Berto’s trainer told him to stay in the center of the round. He didn’t want him to back up to the ropes the way he’d been doing. Unfortunately, Berto failed to follow the instructions from his trainer, as he continued to back up against the ropes in the following rounds.
In the 4th round, both fighters were cut from separate head-butts. You can argue that Porter initiated the head clashes because he was working on the inside with his head lowered while throwing shots. Porter landed more shots in the round.
In rounds 5 and 6, Porter had Berto trapped against the ropes frequently, and unable to do much. Berto hit Porter with a couple of nice uppercuts from in close during the round. However, Porter still was the busier fighter and landed far more shots.
In the 7th, Porter changed things up by staying on the outside and boxing from the center of the ring. This enabled Berto land some beautiful punches. He took advantage of his hand speed and power to get the better of Porter.
Porter’s trainer obviously talked to him after the 7th, because he came out on fire in the 8th and immediately started mugging Berto. This round was the worst round of the fight for Berto by far. He was badly worked over by Porter, and he looked beaten and hurt by the time the round ended. It was surprising that Berto came out for the 9th, because he looked finish by the end of the 8th.
With the win, Porter is now the WBC mandatory for champion Keith Thurman. Just when that fight takes place is hard to tell at this point. Thurman is likely going to face Danny Garcia next in the second half of the year. Unless Porter wants to sit idle and wait for his mandatory title shot against Thurman, he’s likely going to need to fight someone else just to stay busy. It would be great if Porter’s management found him a live body like Amir Khan or someone notable. I’m not sure if they will, given that he’s got a guaranteed title shot.