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Shawn Porter and Keith Thurman boil over in confrontation

Image: Shawn Porter and Keith Thurman boil over in confrontation

By Allan Fox: An irritated ‘Showtime’ Shawn Porter (28-2-1, 17 KOs) confronted inactive WBA/WBC welterweight champion Keith ‘One Time’ Thurman (28-0, 20 KOs) last Saturday night in front of reporters at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Porter, 31, put Thurman’s feet to the fire, demanding to know when he finally give him his title shot that he’s owed as the No.1 WBC challenger. Initially, Thurman said that Porter will have to wait until the World Boxing Council mandates for him to take the fight. But after Porter angrily hounded him for over 10 minutes in front of the boxing media, Thurman finally said he’ll fight him in October.

Before Thurman agreed to fight Porter in October, he said he could potentially face Danny Garcia after his “get back” tune-up fight on May 19th on SHOWTIME. Porter got heated when Thurman told him that. Porter said, “You ain’t got options to fight Danny Garcia before me.” The fact that Thurman was mentioning Garcia as his second opponent for 2018 suggests that he’s been thinking about making that fight. If Thurman does take the rematch with Garcia in October 2018, it means he won’t get around to fighting Porter until 2019 at the earliest.

Thurman: “Apparently, I must fight him [Porter]. It’s a must do. Call Al [Haymon].”

Porter: “When are we going to get to do it again? You’ve been sitting still.”

Thurman: “I got cut up. I paid $25,000 to get cut up. I’ll tell you now to your face. When I feel like it or whenever they mandate it. If you really want to talk to somebody, talk to the sanctioning bodies.”

Porter: “Why are you not ready for the work now?”

Thurman: “I got the get back. You are a potential opponent for later this year”

Porter: “Who and when? You can’t answer that. You’re not a real champion.”

Thurman: “Look, injury, dog, Injury.”

Porter: “That’s over.”

Thurman: “I fought you after an injury. I fought Danny [Garcia] with an injury.”

Porter: “It’s over. It’s part of the business. You’re waiting for them [WBC] to mandate you.”

Thurman: “You’re going to get it. That’s one way of it happening. What if we feel like fighting Danny before you. I’ve got options.”

Porter: “You ain’t got options to fight Danny Garcia before me.”

Thurman: “My get back is my get back. After my get back, I’m going to look at you.”

As you can see, Thurman wants to use 2018 to slowly work his way back from elbow surgery. He says he could fight Porter or Danny Garcia this year in the second half of the year, but he’s not sure. Whatever promises Porter was able to squeeze out of Thurman about maybe fighting him in October, he should take that with a grain of salt, because he could very well change his mind. Without the World Boxing Council allowing Thurman to take an entire off the way he’s doing, he couldn’t do this. The WBC is letting Thurman stay inactive for over 1 year without defending his WBC title. The same goes for the WBA. Thurman won the WBC 147 lb. title last March in beating Danny Garcia by a 12 round decision. It’ll be 14 months with no title defenses by the time Thurman finally makes his first defense of his WBC belt on May 19th. The WBC has stripped injured champions in the past by changing their status to ‘Champion in recess’ when they’ve been unable to defend it for a long period of time. Thurman for some reason isn’t being stripped of his WBC belt by the sanctioning body. It’s difficult for the contenders like Porter, as his career is frozen while he waits for Thurman to heal up slowly and then waste time with his “get back” year fighting soft opposition.

Porter: “Let’s be real here. There are 3 guys, pick 1. It’s ‘Showtime’ Shawn Porter. There’s Danny Garcia and Errol Spence. Pick 1.”

Thurman: “I like making you a little angry. You might get it later this year. You’re on the to-do list.”

Porter: “I’m on the to-do list? I’m on the goddamn top, right? Tell me I’m at the top.”

Thurman: “It’ll be done.”

Porter: “Don’t take too long. Do you need a tune-up before you fight Shawn Porter for the WBC title?”

Thurman: “Yes.”

Porter: “Why?”

Thurman: “I already told you why. I just showed you the scar tissue. It’s all about getting back moving. It’s about moving and grooving.”

Porter: “You’re not finding that out in the gym?”

Thurman: “I’ve been out of the ring for a year. There is a little bit of ring rust. I’m intelligent about acknowledging that.”

Porter: “We want to know when?”

Thurman: “I just said later this year.”

Porter: “It’s February. Pick a month.”

Thurman: “October. I’m fighting May 19th. That’s my get back.”

Porter: “But you don’t have an opponent yet.”

Thurman: “But it ain’t going to be you. I can tell you that right now.”

Porter: “So I can make my move now.”

Thurman: “Make a move to the left. Make a move to the right. You ain’t coming for my spot.”

Porter: “Whenever you’re ready to give it up.”

Thurman: “I ain’t going to be giving it up.”

Porter: “When you’re ready to give it up.”

Thurman: “You couldn’t take it one time. You ain’t going to take it 2 times.”

Porter: “You sure?”

Thurman: “You never could. You never would. You never could. You never would.”

Porter: “You sure? Did I run in that fight? Did I run?”

Thurman: “You got the ‘L’. I had you on your back foot too.”

Porter: “Let me say this and it’s over. You know what it is. We’re waiting on him [Thurman]. If you wonder why ever fighter in the welterweight division is inactive, it’s because this man right here ain’t man enough to get in the ring.”

Thurman: “Oh year, a year after surgery, OK.”

Porter: “Whenever you’re ready.”

Thurman: “Don’t worry. We’ll have a contract.”

Towards the end of the meeting between Porter and Thurman, both guys got in each other’s faces and they both looked really angry. Thurman didn’t like being confronted with real questions by Porter, who is watching his career stall out because of a champion that is unable to stay healthy. This wouldn’t be an issue if the sanctioning bodies would strip the injured Thurman of his titles so that Porter and the other contenders could fight for the belts, but thus far they haven’t done this.

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