Press Release: Former two-time welterweight title holder Andre Berto will look to put himself in a position for another 147-pound title when he faces former IBF Shawn Porter in a WBC eliminator that headlines a Premier Boxing Champions event Saturday, April 22nd from Barclays Center in Brooklyn and live on Showtime. Televised coverage begins at 9:30 p.m. ET/6:30 p.m. PT with WBC 154-pound champion Jermell Charlo defending against Charles Hatley. As Berto wraps up training camp in Oakland with trainer Virgil Hunter, he shares some thoughts on camp, his match-up with Porter and more.
Q: How has training camp gone? Do you feel like you’re still learning and growing with Virgil Hunter?
A: “We’ve had a tremendous training camp out here in the Bay. I’m focused and I’m in great shape. Training with Virgil is like stepping in to a classroom. I’m always learning and growing as a fighter when I’m in the gym with him. We’ve been pushing to the limit every day and I’m just ready to go to work.”
Q: What would you say are Shawn’s strengths in the ring? What do you have to prepare for?
A: “Shawn’s a great fighter but we are fully focused on what we need to do in the ring. My boxing IQ has grown so much and now everything we’re doing has a purpose. I’ve had tremendous sparring this camp and everyone I’ve been there with has been trying to push me to a whole other level so I will be ready for anything come fight night. We are going to be ready for whatever Shawn brings on April 22. We’ve seen him brawl and try to press guys out but he might try do something different in this fight and we’ll be ready for it. I’m known for my speed, my power, my explosiveness and I’m in fantastic shape so this is definitely going to be a can’t miss fight.”
Q: What does it mean to you to be in camp with the other great fighter’s in Hunter’s stable including Andre Ward, Amir Khan, Andrzej Fonfara and Peter Quillin, amongst others?
A: “We have a tremendous atmosphere out here and we all feed off of each other. Training with all these great fighters and world champions pushes you to another level. We all support each other and it definitely adds another level of motivation during training camp for each of our fights.”
Q: What does it mean to you to be in a position to become a three-time champion?
“Becoming a three-time world champion is great motivation. The WBC belt was the first belt that I won and I want it back. I avenged my loss to Victor Ortiz last year but getting the green belt back would bring everything full circle. At this point in my career, every fight is big and a potentially career defining fight so I’m taking everything one step at a time and preparing like I need to.”
Tickets for the live event, which is promoted by DiBella Entertainment, can be purchased online by visiting www.barclayscenter.com or by calling 1-800-745-3000. Tickets are also available at the American Express Box Office at Barclays Center. Group discounts are available by calling 844-BKLYN-GP.