Shawn Porter retires, refuses to be a gatekeeper

By Allan Fox: Shawn Porter announced his retirement last Saturday night after losing to WBO welterweight champion Terence Crawford in their ESPN+ PPV bout. Porter said he had planned to retire after the fight with Crawford, even if he had won.

It’s good that Porter didn’t reveal to the boxing public his retirement plans ahead of time, as many of them would have been less willing to purchase the Crawford-Porter fight on PPV.

Porter’s dad Kenny stopped the fight last Saturday night in the 10th round after Shawn had been knocked down twice by the unbeaten Crawford (38-0, 29 KOs).

Porter enjoys golden parachute payday

Kenny’s explanation for stopping the fight while Porter was seemingly still fine was due to him being unprepared for the contest. He said Porter couldn’t defend himself, and it wasn’t the same effort as before.

The 34-year-old former IBF/WBC 147-lb champion Porter (31-4-1, 17 KOs) says he didn’t want to become a “gatekeeper” wind up fighting into his 40s.

The gatekeeper part would have started immediately for Porter if he’d continued because he would have had a lot of interest from promoters to match their young fighters against him to add his name to their resumes.

It’s good that Porter was given a golden parachute retirement payday against Crawford.

Image: Shawn Porter retires, refuses to be a gatekeeper

Unlike many fighters, Porter made millions from his fights against Errol Spence Jr., Keith Thurman, Adrien Broner, and Crawford and can afford to walk away while he’s still fighting at a high level.

The retirement announcement is perhaps two years too late for Porter, as he’d only fought once since his loss to Spence in September 2019, and that was against little-known bottom-dweller Sebastian Formella in August 2020.

“I took too many shots clean, and that’s not the Porter way,” said Shawn Porter at the post-fight press conference in discussing his loss to Crawford.

“I was prepared to announce my retirement tonight, win, lose or draw,” Porter continued. “Even if it was a draw, they were telling us the date we would have to do it again. I was not going to do it again. I’m announcing my retirement right now.”

Had Porter stuck around and chosen not to retire, it would have been difficult for him to earn another title shot without fighting one of the top contenders.

Shawn refuses to be a gatekeeper

“I’m not going to be a gatekeeper,” said Porter. “That’s not the life I want to live. I’ve never wanted to live the life of a fighter who fights into his 40s. I’m 34, and now’s the time.”

The World Boxing Organization made it easy for Porter to become their mandatory challenger after the loss to Spence. For Porter to get this title shot and a mandatory spot against Crawford, he only had to beat Sebastian Formella.

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You can argue that if Porter had to earn his title shot by beating Vergil Ortiz Jr. or Jaron Ennis, he would have likely lost and never gotten the opportunity for the golden parachute retirement fight against Crawford.

Porter will be remembered for his wins over these talented fighters:

  • Paulie Malignaggi
  • Andre Berto
  • Danny Garcia
  • Devon Alexander
  • Julio Diaz
  • Adrien Broner
  • Adrian Granados
  • Ray Robinson