In a bloody and rather messy fight between two former 147-pound titlists, Shawn Porter improved to 27-2-1 with a ninth round stoppage of Andre Berto (31-5) in the main event of Saturday’s card at the Barclays Center. With the win, Porter put himself in line for a rematch with WBC/WBA welterweight champion Keith Thurman.
In his typical fashion, Porter repeatedly bull-rushed Berto into the ropes and strafed him with combinations. With his higher workrate, Porter was clearly ahead at the time of the stoppage.
In round 2, after scoring the first knockdown of the fight, a bad cut surfaced over Porter’s left eye, the result of an apparent head butt. In round 4, a clash of heads left Porter with a cut over the other eye, but Berto also came away from the collision with a cut above his left eye that ultimately bled more profusely. Referee Mark Nelson called time out in round 5 to have the doctor examine Berto’s cut and doctors visited the corners of both fighters before the start of the next round.
In round 9, Porter knocked Berto into the ropes leading the referee to issue a standing 8-count. When the action resumed, Porter decked Berto with a hard left hook and the referee called it off.
Heading into the bout, Porter promised to send a message to Keith Thurman. “I’m going to let Keith know that I’m coming for him,” he said.
On Saturday night in Brooklyn, Porter talked the talk and walked the walk.
The co-feature was an all-Texas affair that pitted Houston’s Jermell Charlo against Charles Hatley of Dallas for Charlo’s WBC 154-pound diadem. In the best performance of his career, Charlo won every round before ending the contest with a brutal 6th round knockout.
Charlo, whose twin brother holds the IBF version of this title, was a solid 11/1 favorite despite the fact that he was out-boxed by John Jackson in his last start before pulling the bout out of the fire in the eighth frame. But the punters had no interest in Hatley (26-1-1 going in) who was coming off a 17-month layoff and interrupted his training to sue his new promoter, Don King.
Charlo, now 29-0, hurt Hatley in the waning seconds of round 2 and dropped him with a straight right hand in the next stanza. They were fighting toe-to-toe in the center of the ring when Charlo delivered the knockout blow, an overhand right that left Hatley sprawled across a lower strand of ring rope. Referee Harvey Dock didn’t bother to count. To the relief of those in attendance, Hatley was able to leave the ring under his own power.
Brooklyn’s remarkable Amanda Serrano keeps losing weight without losing any strength. In a bout billed for the vacant WBO world female bantamweight title, Serrano (32-1-1, 24 KOs) proved too strong for Dihiana Santana (35-9). The referee stopped the contest in the eighth round.
The 28-year-old Serrano fought at 118 pounds, the lightest of her career. She has now won titles at weights ranging from 118 to 135 pounds, five titles overall, making her the first female and first boxer of Puerto Rican descent to win titles in five different weight classes.
Also, Jose Miguel Borrego, a 19-year-old southpaw from Aguascalientes, Mexico, advanced to 11-0 (10) with a seventh round stoppage of gritty but out-gunned John Delperdang in an 8-round contest in the 140-pound division. The highly-touted Borrego won five national titles as an amateur in Mexico. This was the first time that he was extended beyond five rounds. Borrego had stopped seven of his previous opponents in the opening round.
8 rounds cruiserweights: Joseph Williams TKO 3 Felipe Romero
6 rounds welterweights: Jason Sosa TKO 3 Emmanuel Valadez
4 rounds welterweights: Kenny Robles TKO 1 Latorie Woodberry
4 rounds welterweights: Richardson Hitchins UD Alexander Picot
Photo credit: Amanda Westcott / Showtime
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