Former world champions Andre Berto and Shawn Porter will meet in the main event of a Premier Boxing Champions card on April 22nd, 2017 at the Barclays Center in New York.

The bout will be the WBC’s title eliminator with the winner between the 5th ranked Porter and the 7th ranked Berto scheduled to face the new WBC champion Keith Thurman next.

Title Eliminator

Showtime Shawn Porter is just 2-2 in his last four bouts but his losses were to IBF welterweight champion Kell Brook and Thurman. Those bouts were close and went down the wire. Porter could have easily won both on another given time. Should Porter get past Berto, he may be staring at a rematch against Keith Thurman.

Like Porter, Berto’s last few bouts have been split 50-50. He’s won just half of his last eight bouts and has virtually lost to every big name that he’s faced. Berto is best remembered for being Floyd Mayweather Jr.’s retirement opponent. He has not won back to back fights since 2010. A win over Porter puts him on line to fight for the WBC belt he successfully defended five times during his peak.

Not The Same

Porter is a solid -420 favorite over Berto who is currently at +300.

Berto’s record is an impressive 31-4 with 24 KOS but he’s clearly not the same fighter he was in his prime. Ever since pulling out of the Shane Mosley bout in 2010 in the aftermath of the Haiti earthquakes, Andre Berto has not been the same ‘Beast’ inside the ring. From being undefeated in his first 27 bouts, Berto suddenly went 4-5 and although he is coming off a 4th round KO win over Victor Ortiz, it’s clear that Berto no longer has the same pop in his punches and has lost a step or two inside the ring.

The Prediction

Porter may be coming off a loss to Keith Thurman but that was a closely contested bout and Porter may have even gained more respect from it. He may not be the flashy boxer but his blue collar work ethic, high level boxing IQ and technical abilities are solid enough to get the job done. Showtime loves to come forward and press the action. That pressure and heavy work rate should pose a lot of trouble for the battle weary Berto.

Of course, Berto is still a very respectable fighter but post shoulder surgery, he cannot keep step with  the tireless Shawn Porter. We’re picking Porter to win on points. He should be able to force Berto to box him and avoid getting into a slugfest where Berto still has the puncher’s chance.

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