“I felt a lot stronger. In the ninth round I felt like it was round one. I need to work on shortening up punches and sticking with the game plan. My dad wanted me to be sharp and throw more straight punches.
“I feel strong and I feel good. I used my jab. There were definitely things I have to work on but I’m proud of myself. 147 is where it’s at.
“Paulie is a great champion. He’s a craft veteran with a great jab and foot movement. But I went in there and executed the game plan.
“Keith Thurman and Shawn Porter are great fighters in this division. If they want, we can make it happen.”
“I was trying to dictate the pace because I didn’t want him to get into a groove. He’s a hard puncher and I didn’t want to give him confidence to land a big shot. I wanted to dictate with my jab and keep him missing, so he’d second guess on throwing his power. The less power shots he threw the less power shots he could hit me with.
“I was trying to take a bit of his confidence. He was walking me down fairly well behind the jab. He cut me in the fourth and I think that upped his confidence. I never could get control of the pace though. In spots I felt I was giving up less ground and I had him missing. He got back on his groove though and he had a strong advantage.
“I think Danny can be an upper echelon fighter, he already is. He can put his name in the history books. He has a lot of talent. People don’t realize he has a lot of character too. He has a very good poker face. He doesn’t get frustrated, and if he does he doesn’t show it to you.
“His father’s a great trainer and he really stays on him. Danny listens and they have a great relationship. Every time a round would start it was like he was fresh. Even at the end of rounds when I gave him something to think about he came back, and that’s really important.
“I’ve got a really good job commentating and watching great fighters fight ringside. I hope to sit around ringside for a long time. I felt like if I couldn’t put up a great performance tonight then it would be my last. I was trying to hang tough as much as I could. I remember when I was taking big shots I just kept thinking: ‘Don’t give in. This is your last night if you give in. Don’t show that you’re going to give in. If you can show that you’re still hungry for it then you’ll convince yourself that this isn’t the end.’ I wanted to keep showing that I want it. Little by little he broke me down, and I have no problem with the stoppage.
“I’m probably not fighting again. You hate to make an emotional decision. My career started in Brooklyn 14 years ago. If it ends in Brooklyn tonight then at least I ended it at home where I’m from and in front of the greatest fans in the world.”