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Amir Khan to fight in summertime

Image: Amir Khan to fight in summertime

By Barry Holbrook: Amir Khan plans on announcing his next fight date around Ramadan for a fight in the summer. The former IBF/WBA light-welterweight champion Khan (34-5, 21 KOs) says he’s got a lot left in the tank at 33, and he’d like to fight another 2 or 3 more times before he retires from boxing.

Khan says he’s not interested in fighting Kell Brook due to him now fighting at 154. Boxing fans still want to see Khan and Brook fight, but with the two of them campaigning in different weight classes, it’s not an option. Brook (39-2, 27 KOs) looked big last month in stopping junior middleweight contender Mark DeLuca in the 7th round on February 8.

Khan fought twice in 2019 in losing to WBO 147-lb champion Terence Crawford and stopping Billy Dib. His fight against Dib took place last July in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, and looked impressive.

The next date for Khan’s summer fight to be announced soon

“Hopefully, I’ll announce a date around Ramadan time. I want to fight around summertime,” said Khan to IFL TV. “I’ve got deals on the table for America, I’ve got a UK fight, and I’ve got a fight in Saudi Arabia. I’m going to look at all the options and see what the best deal is. Let’s see what deals are out there.

“I don’t mind working with Matchroom. Hopefully, I’ll find out in the next couple of weeks what direction I want to go. I still feel like I’ve got a lot left in me. I’ve made some money in the sport. I’m thinking one or two more fights, and then let’s see where it goes from there,” said Khan.

These would be good options for Khan:

  • Keith Thurman
  • Danny Garcia
  • Shawn Porter
  • Josh Kelly
  • David Avanesyan
  • Regis Prograis
  • Chris Algieri
  • Jose Ramirez

It would be good to see Khan fighting one of the top welterweights in the division. WBA welterweight champion Manny Pacquiao would be an option for Khan, but he’s expected to fight Mikey Garcia in July. Khan has wanted to fight Pacquiao for the last 10 years, but it hasn’t come about.

Chasing after top names hasn’t worked for Khan, and he’s failed to get the big names to face him. In addition to Pacquiao, Khan had hoped of getting a match against Floyd Mayweather Jr. Khan did get a big money fight against Canelo Alvarez in 2016, but it didn’t go well for him. Canelo stopped Khan in the 6th round after clipping him with a right hand.

Khan with NO interest in Kell Brook fight

“Not honestly,” said Khan when asked if he’d be interested in having conversations about a fight against Kell Brook. “I think he’s at 154 now, and I’m still at 147. I don’t think it makes a difference now. He’s gone off to the next weight division, and I respect that. I don’t think that fight is going to happen, so we have to move on and look at other names now,” said Khan.

Too much time has gone by for a fight between Khan and Brook to interest boxing fans. Brook’s losses to Errol Spence Jr. and Gennadiy Golovkin have taken a lot of the sparkle that his career once had.

If Brook had stayed at 147, then he would be an option for Khan, but he was forced to move up to 154 after his loss to Spence. Khan and Brook could still make good money fighting, but not as much as before. It’s still not a good look for them to fight due to there being better options for each.

It’s pointless for Khan to fight Brook now, as boxing fans would view it as an old timer’s fight.  Khan gains more by fighting a younger fighter. If he wants to face a guy in his early 30s, then Porter or Thurman would be great choices.

Amir will fight the best available opponent

“When I have a date set, I’m going to go with whatever name is out there, and whatever opponent I can get,” said Khan. “When I was chasing opponents, I didn’t get the names that I wanted, and I wasted a lot of my career doing that. I’ve had 39 fights, and that’s a lot of fights, really.

“It was at the highest level as well at the highest level of boxing, fighting top names like Crawford and Canelo, all the biggest names in boxing. I’ve had a great career. I want to finish off with a few more fights, and then take it from there. I love the sport, and that’s the reason why I still want to fight,” said Khan.

If Khan can take a stay busy fight in the summer, it’s possible that Pacquiao might entertain a fight with him in late 2020. Pacquiao would likely be open to facing Khan, especially if he’s coming off of a nice win in the summer.

Fans would like to see Khan and Josh Kelly fight, and that would help set up Pacquiao-Khan for the fall.

Khan wants no regrets when he retires

“It’s hard to walk away from it. I don’t want to be one of those fighters that walks away from it and then wants to come back again,” said Khan. “I’ve had 15 world title fights, and I’ve been in the ring with the biggest names in the biggest fight of the year and the best fight of the year.

“It’s hard to walk away from the sport, because once I walk away, I know I’m going to miss it. I’m going to make sure that when I do call it a day, it’s going to be at the right time. I am 33 now and coming close to the end of my career, but I’m making the most of it,” said Khan.

For Khan not to have any regrets after he retires, he needs to get the most mileage out of the remainder of his career. Taking on nothing but quality fighters before tiring will leave Khan with more satisfaction about his career than if he takes weak opponents.  He needs an upgrade over Billy Dib for his next fight.

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