Alexander vs Porter: Devon Alexander confident, Shawn Porter promises to take the belt


Devon Alexander and Shawn Porter will clash on Saturday night for Alexander's IBF welterweight title, taking a brief youth amateur rivalry to the pro ranks.

Years ago, when both St. Louis' Devon Alexander and Akron's Shawn Porter were children in the amateur ranks, before they were even 10 years of age, the two fighters met at the Ohio State Fair. Alexander won.

Now at 26, Alexander and Porter are on a real collision course, with Alexander's IBF welterweight world title at stake on Saturday night in Brooklyn, live on Showtime.

"I already beat you," Alexander told Porter at the podium during Thursday's press conference. "So it isn't going be any different Saturday night."

Though it's obviously completely different than when they were children, as we are now talking two fully-grown, fully-matured professional boxers and not two little kids learning the basics of the sport, Alexander was perhaps looking to worm his way into Porter's mind any way possible. After all, it never hurts.

"I'm ready. I'm 120 percent ready," Alexander said. "I'm focused. Shawn is a solid fighter. He stepped to the plate like some people didn't."

That led the southpaw titleholder to take a quick jab at Amir Khan, who negotiated to face Alexander on this date before bowing out and looking to land a fight with Floyd Mayweather on May 3, 2014, instead.

"You guys know I was supposed to fight somebody else but Shawn Porter stepped up to the plate and now I've got to take care of him."

Porter (22-0-1, 14 KO) looked a year ago (51 weeks ago, to be exact) like he might flame out before he ever quite got here. Fighting to a disappointing draw with a spirited Julio Diaz who exceeded expectations, Porter's limitations seemed exposed.

But this year, he got back on track, mauling Phil Lo Greco in May, and clearly beating Diaz in a September rematch. He says he's ready for his biggest fight to date, and his first crack at a world title.

"We had camp in Las Vegas. It was beautiful. It's been beautiful being here in Brooklyn and I'm ready to do it," he said. "This was my hardest camp training for my hardest fight."

Porter believes he's got a good handle on what Alexander can -- and more importantly, perhaps cannot -- do in the ring.

"Not to take anything from Alexander, except his belt," Porter said, "but I know what he's got to bring and I'm ready to handle it."

Alexander was unmoved by the promise to have his belt lifted from him. He's hoping a win here could spring him forward into the Mayweather discussion.

"I'm going to continue to win, continue to prove to people that I'm an elite fighter, that I deserve to be at the top, and that's what I'm going to do," he said. "Come Saturday night my winning ways are going to continue."

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