Shawn Porter will be rooting for Manny Pacquiao when he takes on Yordenis Ugas on August 21.
‘Showtime’ Porter was only 22-years-old when he sparred the Filipino superstar a decade ago.
Meanwhile, Ugas gave Porter a competitive fight when they clashed back in 2019, but ultimately lost on points.
Speaking to Premier Boxing Champions, the American expects an explosive encounter when they step into the ring on Saturday night.
Porter said: “Alright, we’re not getting what we want, but we’re getting something, and I think it’s going to be pretty good.
“We’ve got Manny Pacquiao, fast, slick, then we’ve got Yordenis Ugas, strong, powerful, durable, gonna keep coming forward.
“Styles make fights, there’s no secret in that, I do think this can be a more exciting fight than a lot of people expect if Yordenis Ugas can force Manny Pacquiao to go toe-to-toe with him.
“If we get a toe-to-toe battle, it’s going to go either way.”
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In a bizarre twist of fate, Pacquiao, 42, was recently stripped of his WBA welterweight world title, with Ugas elevated to champion in his place.
Now Pacquiao will attempt to regain the belt he secured with a split decision over Keith Thurman Jr at 147 pounds – and Porter also fully expects Pacquiao to come away with the victory.
“I’m not gonna sell you all on that,” the 33-year-old added. “I do think Manny Pacquiao will control this fight from beginning to end, again that speaks to his age, can he maintain that for twelve rounds?
“I think that that might be the biggest component to this fight is if Manny Pacquiao can stay 80 to 90 percent through the course of twelve rounds.
“With that being said, I do pick Manny Pacquiao to win this fight.
“It’s going to be a good fight, I don’t think Yordenis Ugas is going to get completely blown out, but, if he can’t force Manny Pacquiao to fight, Manny’s going to take this one 100 percent.”
Porter previously stated that he also believes Pacquiao will seriously struggle against Ugas in the latter stages of the fight.
“Manny can start and finish an exchange with the best of them,” he told FightHype.com. “He’s always been able to do that. He can do that with Yordenis Ugas.
“The thing is, rounds probably eight through twelve, I don’t think Manny is gonna have the same kind of steam he has early on.
“Later on in the fight, he needs to continue to move and use his jab and try and stay on the outside to force Yordenis to use his feet and hands together.
“That’s where I think Yordenis has problems, certainly, he had problems with my movement, and I was able to move and punch, move and punch.
“Early on, Manny won’t have a problem exchanging and getting into that firefight with Yordenis.
“I don’t see Yordenis being able to catch Manny with anything early, but later on, in the fight, it will be a problem.
“It will be a problem. I’ll go on record for saying that. The later this fight goes, it’ll be more of a problem for Manny than it will be for Yordenis Ugas.”