There were two schools of thought heading into Shawn Porter's first defense of his IBF Welterweight Championship on Saturday night against Paulie Malignaggi.
Either he was a young fighter, just coming into his prime, who would take the next step by disposing of the former champion, or he was going to be exposed by a wily veteran who's made a career out of proving his critics wrong.
Nowhere, in either of those possibilities, was it considered that Porter would absolutely blitz Malignaggi, dominate him and stop him in stunningly brutal fashion in the first third of the fight. But that's exactly what happened.
Porter was just too strong, too physical and too dominant inside. He attacked from the opening bell, and he didn't give the former champion any room to operate. Malignaggi was cut in Round 1, dropped twice and stopped in Round 4, and then taken to the hospital as a precaution.
It wasn't the first time that the "Magic Man" has been stopped—Ricky Hatton and Amir Khan also pulled off the feat—but this was far more quick and brutal.
Porter has now beaten Devon Alexander and Malignaggi back-to-back, and in the process, he's burst on the scene as one of the top young 147-pound fighters in the world.
With his speed, physicality and in-your-face style that doesn't give an opponent time to breathe, Porter has a ton of upside. The upset of Alexander was certainly impressive, but demolishing the tough-as-nails and usually durable Malignaggi was something else.
Porter, per Boxing Scene, will be ordered by the IBF to defend his title against Kell Brook in his next fight, and that bout presents a fair amount of intrigue.
"Showtime" has plenty of salivating potential opponents for him fighting on Showtime—no pun intended—so he'll have plenty of opportunities to continue climbing the ranks.