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Porter vs Granados: Fight preview and matchup

Shawn Porter faces Adrian Granados Saturday on Showtime.

Scott Christ is the managing editor of Bad Left Hook and has been covering boxing for SB Nation since 2006.

Shawn Porter

Shawn Porter v Andre Berto Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images

Record: 27-2-1 (17 KO) ... Streak: W1 ... Last 5: 3-2 ... Last 10: 7-2-1 ... Stance: Orthodox ... Height/Reach: 5'7" / 69½" ... Age: 30

Thoughts: Once upon a time, Shawn Porter looked like he might not make it as a top welterweight. He went to a draw in December 2012 with Julio Diaz, a good fighter, a former titleholder, but his best days had come as a lightweight. Porter was a prospect. Diaz was a test. Porter didn’t pass it.

But Porter turned it around from there. He dominated Phil Lo Greco five months later, and won a clear decision against Diaz in a rematch four months after that. That set up his winning the IBF welterweight title from Devon Alexander in December 2013. A year after he hit a wall, he was able to call himself world champion.

Porter made one successful defense, thrashing a past-prime Paulie Malignaggi, before losing his belt to Kell Brook in August 2014.

Since then, Porter has been up and down, but remained a player in the division. He beat Erick Bone, won an all-Ohio grudge match against Adrien Broner, lost to Keith Thurman, and smashed Andre Berto earlier this year.

The win over Berto was supposed to set up a rematch with Thurman, but Thurman being on the shelf with an injury put that on hold. Instead of sitting and waiting, which Porter has done for Thurman before, he’s taking a fight with a tough scrapper in Adrian Granados.

Porter is at his best when he’s forcing the issue in a fight, when he can physically overwhelm opponents, as we’ve seen against Malignaggi, Berto, and for most of the fight, Broner. But Granados does best when a boxing match becomes a fight, too, so this one is interesting, even if it does have a clear favorite in Porter. And you have to like that “Showtime” Shawn is fighting someone who comes to fight, even if it’s meant to be a “stay busy.”

Adrian Granados

Adrien Broner v Adrian Granados Photo by Bobby Ellis/Getty Images

Record: 18-5-2 (12 KO) ... Streak: L1 ... Last 5: 4-1 ... Last 10: 7-3 ... Stance: Orthodox ... Height/Reach: 5'9" / 74" ... Age: 28

Thoughts: HEY. I like Adrian Granados. I’ve got no problem having favorites, and Granados is one of my favorite fighters out there today.

Granados doesn’t have the pretty record, but look at every loss or draw on his record:

  • SD-4 loss to Jose Juan Fuentes (Granados’ second pro fight)
  • D-8 vs Lanardo Tyner
  • MD-8 loss to Frankie Gomez, a protected prospect
  • D-10 vs Kermit Cintron
  • MD-10 loss to Felix Diaz
  • SD-10 loss to Brad Solomon
  • SD-10 loss to Adrien Broner

Granados has fought close in every blemish on his sheet, and has had good arguments several times. The most notable of those came in his last fight, this past February against Broner, in AB’s hometown.

Broner won on scores of 96-94, 97-93, and 93-97. I had it even, 95-95. I thought the fight very easily could have gone either way.

But it wasn’t a close or disputed loss that really put Granados on the map. It was a win in 2015 over Amir Imam, a top 140-pound prospect who was destined for big things. Coming in, the thought was that yes, Imam should win, but that Granados, with his history, couldn’t be overlooked.

Imam started well in the opening round, but Granados took over after that, and eventually stopped the heralded youngster in the eighth round, just beating Imam down and breaking him. Imam was a greater talent, probably still is, but Granados suckered him into the sort of fight that gave the underdog a chance, and he took advantage.

The matchup with Porter won’t work that way, and even the Granados we saw against Broner isn’t the Granados that could potentially win this fight. Honestly, I think this is a bad matchup for Granados, but I know he won’t go lying down, too.

Matchup Grade: B. I like this fight, but, again, I like Granados a lot. What I expect is a tough, hard-fought battle between two aggressive fighters, but I also expect Porter to eventually overpower Granados, maybe sooner than later.

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