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article imageOp-Ed: Boxer Kell Brook, matinee idol and fighter, defeats Shawn Porter

By William Charles Baker     Aug 26, 2014 in Sports
Carson - Coming from Sheffield, England, not much was expected of Kell Brook when he crossed the Atlantic to fight in California. Many have crossed the pond and were sent back into obscurity. Shawn Porter expected a repeat but handed over his IBF belt instead.
Sad to say we all harbor our resentments and illusions about a lot of things. Absent world wars and civil unrest there are few things to satisfy these feelings except boxing. A final conclusion and solution to all things but more importantly who is better than who.
With curiosity and sometimes amusement we have watched the parade of contenders come across looking for glory and paydays, John Murray vs Brandon Rios at Madison Square Garden — the title left in suspense due to overweight forfeiture by Rios. Junior Witter vs Zab Judah attempting to obtain a world title early in his career and being outdistanced by the experience of Judah. And every weight class has history of its own.
The Press of Atlantic City Reports: “Gavin Rees' fifth-round TKO loss to WBC lightweight champion Adrien Broner three months ago was the fourth straight defeat in title fights by a Brit at the legendary arena in the last five years - following setbacks by Gary Lockett (to Kelly Pavlik), Darren Barker (to Sergio Martinez) and Carl Froch (to Andre Ward).”
We watch with regularity fighters from every country and nationality without any sense of surprise, but when they come to the United States from across the pond eyes seem to light up. Could it be some hold-over from the war waged to win the country? I do not know — for me it was all about the fight that may have opened the doors to more interesting fights and fighters.
You would not want to meet Shawn Porter in a street fight. The Porter family and closeness with his father as trainer and life figure has brought him and extra strength that outlasts his diminutive appearance. He brawls inside and out, swings wide and makes contact, ruffs you up and comes back for more. Even Kell Brook expected a rough fight even using the word “scrappy.” But still, roughhousing and head first brawls was not enough this time to win the day.
ESPN Boxing Reports: "Porter is not special: We have at tendency to jump to conclusions and prematurely anoint a fighter as the next big thing, which is what happened with Porter, a likeable jumping bean of a slugger with a big smile and an aggressive attitude. His victories over Paulie Malignaggi and Devon Alexander — a faded veteran and a reluctant dragon — fooled a lot of people into thinking he was something special. But after the thumping he took from Brook, we know better. But that doesn’t mean we won’t make the same mistake again the next time a young fighter comes along and scores a couple of good wins. We believe because we want to believe.”
But it was that same scrappiness that won the title from Devon Alexander and thrust Paulie Malignaggi to the curb in his attempt to take the title. Malignaggis approach as a jab master proved ineffective under the relentless pursuit and beat down. Thus Porter would hold onto the title for a while longer until the call for mandatory fights could not be avoided. Many had heard the name Kell Brook as a dangerous opponent and one to be avoided if possible. But possibly in the mind of many was the old prejudice that he comes from across the pond he is overrated.
At five feet 9 inches in height there was a slight edge over Porter whose height proved more of a weapon than a disadvantage in previous fights. Burrowing under punches and going chest to chest in confrontations with windmill punching guaranteed that on occasion some blood would be spilt.
But Kell Brook is a matinee idol one of those guys that you hated to see when out with your girl and walk into a restaurant and all eyes are on him. During the pre-fight instructions he looked down on Porter and with a posture that seemed to add a few more inches Brook truly looked like royalty. But this guy could fight as well and had the means, the strength and the style to punish Porter and discourage his bum rushing style.
The Daily Star Reports: “Until the Khan fight is made, Brook will continue hammering opponents and knocking them out on the catwalk. The ring hunk has signed a sponsorship deal with sportswear giant adidas to become their UK boxing ambassador and has been deluged with modelling offers. Brook, who has won all 24 of his professional fights told Boxing Clever: “I suppose it’s not usual for a boxer to do a bit of modelling because we’ve all got squashed noses and are a bit ugly.”
He looked like a matador toying with a bull and when it was all over Porter looked defeated even before the scores were announced. They may make fun of the darts and the warm beer and all the fuss on the other side but quite a few fighters also see dollar signs. Thousands in arenas and a thirst for boxing on the big stage as well as the fight clubs and street corners or where ever they can get it on.
Amir Khan may have pioneered a lot of the acceptance but his jaw and record has in effect catapulted Kell Brook to the top of the pile and he has promised mega fights for the future. The talk of a grudge match being the next thing on the agenda for Brook with Khan may not be as appealing as a match with Keith Thurmond or rematch with Porter. Either way with some patience and another fight or two on American soil and a Mayweather match may be possible.
With the tremendous ego of Floyd and the seeming same kind of remarks coming from Brook that he was born to fight and always finds a way to win except for the accent seemed like Floyd himself was talking. You could almost see the dollar signs in the Mayweather camp being calculated and bags packed to take the all access tour across the pond.
What could be better than one matinee idol, two. Special K meet TBE the best ever. Wow.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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