Angel Garcia vs. Kenny Porter: A Tale Of Two Fathers

Boxing trainer Angel Garcia is an honest man. 

Remember the part in Scarface when Sosa told Tony Montana that he liked him because there was no lying in him? That’s Angel Garcia, honest to a fault, which he learned can backfire against him during fight week against Keith Thurman.  

Garcia fell victim to cultural misunderstanding during the lead up to the Thurman fight when the word “nigga” slipped from mouth. But as a self-professed “Philly Rican” from the depressed Kensington area of the city, Garcia represents the streets. However, one thing Garcia is still passionate about is his son’s pugilistic career and his safety. 

“Some people feel some type of way,” said Garcia. “But at the end of the day if me and you going to fight and that’s your coach we ain’t supposed to be kissing and lovey dovey. I’ma hate you. Sometimes I might say something that offends you but this is me. As long as I’m not touching you physically I’m cool with it. I’m not racist but at the end of the day that’s what sells.” 

Danny & Angel Garcia on Family Values | SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING

Danny and Angel Garcia discuss their father-son relationship ahead of Danny’s battle for the vacant WBC Welterweight World Championship against Shawn Porter – live Saturday Sept. 8 at 9PM ET/6PM PT on SHOWTIME.

When “Showtime” Shawn Porter began a viral campaign to fight Danny “Swift” Garcia, to Angel it went from nonsensical to disrespectful and to him it is a request that has been granted foolishly for Porter. It was also a request that both Danny and Angel swear only came into fruition when Thurman vacated the coveted WBC belt

“He want to jump in the ring, you know he want to disrupt the Danny Garcia show,” said Angel. “But the thing about that is be careful what you wish for because destiny is not about what you ask for it’s what you make happen. So he asked for something that he shouldn’t have asked for. Like I tell a lot of fighters, be careful what you wish for because you’ll never be the same guy again.

“Look at Keith Thurman, he got the ‘W’ but where is he at now? Its been one or two years and now he’s in La La Land.”

There has always been an overt, nuanced dynamic to the combat sports term “father-trainer”. Every father trains their child for life in this cold world, yet some have armed their progeny with pugilism skills, guiding them through the unforgiving fight game.

Single father Kenny Porter was drenched in the boxing culture of Cleveland, seeing Don King and Larry Holmes in local gyms before even starting elementary school. As a young football player that dabbled in boxing through the Police Athletic League, Porter knew the focus gained through routine would aid his two sons, Kenny Jr. and Shawn, and made it his household regimen.

Shawn went on to be a two-sport athlete, excelling in both football and boxing. He was ranked number one nationally in the 165-pound boxing weight class while also receiving recruiting letters from college football programs.

Shawn & Kenny Porter on Mental Preparation | SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING

Shawn and Kenny Porter talk about their mental preparation and training camp ahead of Shawn’s battle for the vacant WBC Welterweight World Championship against Danny Garcia- live Saturday Sept. 8 at 9PM ET/6PM PT on SHOWTIME.

However, at times, a fathers love and direction must subside to a sons ambition and Kenny learned to adapt for the benefit of his youngest child.

I never had a conversation with my son about becoming a professional boxer, laughed Kenny. I wanted him to take these scholarships, go somewhere, play football and get a degree.

Walking and talking out his vision for boxing greatness with his father made Kenny understand and resist every parents natural urge to push the educational component any further.

I dont care about you being a great athlete, how fast you are or how strong you are,” Kenny said. “You have to listen and work hard and he did. Now the rest has come together for him.

When fighters are preparing to face off in the squared circle, make no mistake, their trainers are too. Add the fact that each is also the progeny of the trainer and you have an impassioned cauldron of bad intentions. 

This Saturday, two fathers that have looked through the ropes at each other throughout the years will also face off with everything on the line for themselves, their sons, and their future.   

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