Keith Thurman is not remotely intimidated by the power of Shawn Porter ahead of their long-awaited clash on June 25.
WBA world welterweight champion Thurman (26-0-KO22) has recovered from the minor car crash injuries that prompted the fight to be postponed and insists he had no hesitation in shunning the idea of having a tune-up fight before defending his crown.
“If I really wanted to pull out of the fight then I had every opportunity to completely pull out of the fight,” said Thurman in an interview reported onboxingnews24.com. “That’s my statement.
“Even coming back into camp, I could say that I was coming back into camp but I’m not ready for Shawn Porter. I could legitimately say that and avoid him, if I’m trying to avoid him.
“Nobody is trying to avoid Shawn Porter. Look at all the named fighters that fought Shawn Porter, because nobody is avoiding Shawn Porter. Nobody is scared of Shawn Porter.
“Shawn Porter can beat you. He’s tough, durable and comes to win but nobody’s scared. He can hit you hard but he’s not known to be the most devastating puncher. I respect Shawn’s punch but as a 12-round fighter, the way he throws his punches in bunches, he doesn’t sit down as much. We’ve known each other since we were about 17 years old.”
Thurman’s own knockout record is an impressive one and on the only four occasions ‘One Time’ been taken the distance, victory has come in the form of wide unanimous decisions.
“It’s the left hand,” said the unbeaten Floridian. “The left hand has more knockouts than the right hand. It’s the left hook, if you look at the highlights and nowadays I’ve got a variation on the left hook which is basically a left uppercut.
“I throw that uppercut so naturally that I don’t call it an uppercut any more. I call it a ‘three.’ When I throw my one-two-three, I have two options for my ‘three’ and I don’t label it as an independent number. It’s just a three and it’s all about the angle I want to throw it at.”
The bout will be of particular interest to Sheffield’s Kell Brook (36-0-KO25), who won his IBF world title from Porter in August 2014 and could face the winner in a unification bout.