Kell Brook, 32-0, enters as the underdog for Saturday night's IBF welterweight title showdown in Carson California, as the Sheffield, South Yorkshire, England, fighter takes on the American belt-holder Shawn Porter (24-0-1).
The betting odds, per Oddschecker.com, suggest that Brook has roughly a 30 per cent chance of victory, with Porter favoured at around a 70 per cent chance, if you ignore the negligible chance of a draw.
It is interesting to reflect that only a year ago Brook would have been a strong favourite against Porter, particularly had they met at an English venue.
Since then Porter has vastly inflated his stock by beating Devon Alexander for the belt in an upset win over 12 rounds in December, before blowing away the veteran Paulie Malignaggi inside four rounds in April—a more destructive win than Miguel Cotto, Ricky Hatton or Amir Khan had managed over the Brooklynite.
On the back of that, out of a group of largely U.S.-based experts polled by The Ring magazine, a surprising 21 of 21 picked Porter to win this fight, even if a couple suggested he may triumph only thanks to judges siding with the local fighter.
Recent British imports to the U.S. such as Gavin Rees, Brian Rose and Lee Purdy—dubbed "Eddie Hearn's expendables" by rival promoter Frank Warren (via Boxnation.com)—were thoroughly outclassed, but Brook is on a higher level than that trio and deserves serious consideration in this matchup.
Here are five things the Englishman needs to do to come home with the gold.