By John DiSanto at ringside
Photos: Tom Casino/SHOWTIME
Before a crowd of 13,058 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NY, Shawn Porter scored a unanimous decision over Danny Garcia to capture the vacant WBC welterweight title in a close and solidly entertaining main event.
Garcia (34-2, 20 KOs) started well, winning the first three rounds, but Porter (29-2-1, 17 KOs) turned the tide in the fourth and took control with his busier and more aggressive style. Garcia looked uncomfortable on the inside and during clinches, and that was where Porter did his best work.
From the outside, where he had room to launch his punches, Garcia did better. However Porter was able to step in and keep much of the fight close.
The tenth may have been the best round, when the boxers exchanged freely and both fought hard as the fight was winding down. However, Porter regained his edge in the final two and won by scores of 116-112 and 115-113 twice.
“I made a prediction and a hard one to live up to,” said Porter. “I said I wasn’t leaving New York without this belt and I’m not leaving New York without this belt. I knew he was going to be accurate. The game plan for me was to be accurate from the outside and show I could beat him without roughing him up on the ropes.”
A disappointed Garcia clearly disagreed with the judges’ scorecards.
“He was throwing a lot,” said Garcia, who falls to 7-2 in world title fights. “I had my defense tight, so I wasn’t feeling his punches. I thought I landed the clearer shots and won this fight. I have to sit back, relax and see what’s next for me.”