Amir Khan to fight in March, says 2020 could be “BIG year”

By Boxing News - 12/14/2019 - Comments

By Barry Holbrook: Amir Khan will be ready to return to the ring in 3 to 4 months in March or April, and he says it could be retiring at the end of the year. The former IBF/WBA light welterweight champion Khan (34-5, 21 KOs) isn’t giving any ideas of who he plans on fighting or where his fight will be staged. That’s all still being planned.

Thes still young and blazing fast Khan is hoping that he can get a fight against Manny Pacquiao or Floyd Mayweather Jr., but that remains to be seen. Those to are at the top of Khan’s list as far fights that he wants in 2020.

Still no opponent for Khan’s March/April fight

“Hopefully in March or April, I’ll be back out again,” said Khan to IFL TV. “Location and the opponent hasn’t been named yet, but we’re looking at a location, and then hopefully after that at the end of the year. 2020 could be my final big year, so let’s see how I feel. Yeah, why not?” said Khan when asked if the fight will be in England. “I think it can be. I’m keeping all my options open,” said Khan.

If Khan can’t get a fight against Mayweather or Pacquiao, he’s got Kell Brook as an option for him. Brook has been after a fight with ‘King’ Khan for the last 10+ years, and there’s still pockets of boxing fans in the UK that want to see this fight.

The interest isn’t anywhere close like it used to be 8 to 9 years ago, but there’s still more than enough fans chomping at the bit to see the two warriors fight for them to get a good cash out payday. The 2004 Olympic Silver medalist Khan isn’t hurting for money, as he’s done well financially in his 14-year professional career. Brook is looking for his first big fight in his career. Although he got good money fighting Gennadiy Golovkin and Errol Spence Jr., it’s not the kind of payday he would get fighting Khan.

2019 was an excellent year for Khan money-wise

Khan, 33, had a good year in 2019 in facing WBO welterweight champion Terence Crawford and Billy Dib. Those fights were good ones for the amount of money Khan got, but the results weren’t entirely positive. He finished the year with a 1-1 record.

He lost to Crawford after being fouled by him in the 6th round, but he gave him an excellent fight.

Crawford was getting nailed by shots from Khan in the 6th, and unfortunately the fight ended just after that with a low blow delivered by the American. It was the type of shot that Khan wasn’t going to be able to recover from quickly, so his trainer Virgil Hunter did the wise thing in stopping the fight.

It would have been interesting to see how the contest had gone if Crawford hadn’t hurt Khan with a low blow in the 6th. Khan was starting to get to Omaha, Nebraska native with his speedy shots. It was obviously just a coincidence that Crawford hit Khan with a low blow when things were starting to look bad for him

“New money” went to Andy Ruiz’s head – Khan

“A lot of people are putting him down for the way he performed, but I think he boxed the way he needed to,” said Khan to IFL TV about Joshua’s win over Ruiz Jr. “He fought against a guy that had beat him previously with a lot of power, so he had to box him.

“He had to stay away, keep it long, and not get involved,” said Khan bout Joshua’s tactics during the rematch with big Andy. “Ruiz came in a little heavier, so he was going to be slower, but what Anthony Joshua did by boxing him, and being smart and one step ahead of him, and being very careful, and he got the win. He [Joshua] brought the titles back to England,” Khan said.

“He did what he had to do, and he won the fight in style. Yeah, Ruiz admits that he was partying too much, and enjoying life after his last win over Joshua,” said Khan. “He should have been more professional. Sometimes when someone sees new money, they can get to their head a little bit. He knows that was the problem. So he’s going to learn from it, and come back stronger, really,” said Khan.

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Joshua did the right thing by boxing Ruiz, and staying on the move for 12 rounds. Khan understands more than anyone that Joshua has to fight wisely against Ruiz, because he wasn’t going to make the same mistake twice by slugging it out.

Khan is correct about the “new money” that Ruiz had made from his first fight Joshua causing him to not train, and failing to prepare adequately for the rematch. It Ruiz had more time to adjust to being a millionaire before facing Joshua again, it might have had a different result.

Tyson Fury #1 heavyweight – Khan

The #1 [heavyweight] is Tyson Fury, and it’s hard for me to pick Wilder and Joshua. They’re both at the #2 position. They need to fight each other, and I think that’ll be a cracking fight,” said Khan.

By the end of 2021, fans should have a clearer picture about who the #1 heavyweight in boxing. Tyson Fury is challenging WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder in a rematch on February 22, while Joshua faces Kubrat Pulev likely in April, and then possibly Oleksandr Usyk after that.

In 2021, we could see the winner of those fights face each other for the undisputed heavyweight championship. Who will be the last man standing is anyone’s guess at this point.