Hearn on Khan vs. Brook, rules out Benn vs. Avanesyan
By Charles Brun: Eddie Hearn says he’s not involved in the Amir Khan vs. Kell Brook fight that is being talked about. Hearn feels that the two fighters are unrealistic as far as the number of PPV buys the match will generate at this point in their careers.
According to Hearn, he thinks 400,000 PPV buys would be excellent for a Khan vs. Brook fight.
That number is way off the 1 million buys that Khan and Brook believe their fight will pull in.
Hearn says Khan & Brook want HUGE money, but their fight isn’t a huge one anymore. Both fighters are shot and have done nothing in many years.
Khan hasn’t held a world title since 2011 and hasn’t beaten a top-tier fighter since his win over Chris Algieri in 2015. Algieri was a fringe-level fighter back then, and it wasn’t a big deal that Khan beat him.
Khan vs. Brook = Not a big fight anymore
“I saw he [Brook] signed his part of the deal. I’m not involved with that fight. I’m not involved in that deal,” said Eddie Hearn to iFL TV on the Khan vs. Brook fight.
“We had a chat with them. I removed my interest from that fight because I want to make the Conor Benn – Amir Khan fight. Yeah, we could do that,” said Hearn when told that Brook is interested in fighting Conor Benn.
“I think right now, both guys [Khan and Brook] want huge money [for their fight]. “I saw Kell Brook say, ‘We’ve got the biggest fight in British boxing.’ I mean, look, I love Kell, and I love Amir.
“It’s still a fight that people would watch, but it’s not that big a fight anymore. No,” said Hearn when told that Khan vs. Brook is the next most significant fight in British boxing behind Anthony Joshua vs. Tyson Fury.
“No, Dillian Whyte vs. Tyson Fury,” said Hearn in saying that Fury-Whyte is a more significant match-up in British boxing than Khan vs. Brook.
“I think even bigger fights. Yarde beats Lyndon Arthur and then Buatsi against Yarde for the world title.
“I’m not saying it’s [Khan vs. Brook] isn’t a big fight, and I’m not saying I wouldn’t watch it, but the money they want for that fight doesn’t equate,” said Hearn.
You got to blame Khan for not taking the fight with Brook earlier in their careers when the boxing public in the UK was interested in seeing those two fight.
It’s now pointless for Khan and Brook to square off because it would be seen as an old-timers fight, and only the older fans would be interested in seeing it. These guys haven’t stayed relevant by fighting enough.
Khan & Brook overvaluing their fight
“These guys [Khan & Brook] think it’s going to do a million pay-per-view buys,” Hearn said. “If it does 400,000, I think they’ve done very, very well. But my interest in Conor Benn against Amir Khan.
“If Conor Benn gets through Chris Algieri, and I’m speaking to Amir, and I’m ready to make him a big offer for that fight. I do see the attraction for Amir fighting someone like Kell, who isn’t quite as ambitious and isn’t quite as active anymore.
“Listen, they [Brook and Khan] want to end their careers with a bang and make as much money as possible, and I don’t blame them for that. It’s still a good fight, but it’s nowhere, let’s be honest, of what it was.
“I would have bet my house of it doing a million buys back in the day. It was a monster fight. Amir hasn’t boxed for two years since Crawford, was it? Kell hasn’t boxed for a year since Crawford.
“I haven’t seen Kell for a while. He came to Fight Camp, but I’ll see him this weekend,” Hearn said.
Even 400K PPV buys might be unrealistic for a fight between the two badly washed fighters Khan and Brook. It’s not just Khan and Brook are old, and they certainly are that, but the real problem is they don’t fight often enough to stay relevant.
For example, Khan hasn’t fought in 2 1/2 years since his win over former super featherweight Billy Dibb in 2019. That’s ages ago.
As for the 35-year-old Brook, he’s been out of the ring for 12 months since his fourth round knockout loss to Terence Crawford in November 2020.
Hearn wants Khan or Broner for Conor Benn
“We could look at that, but I’d like a much bigger fight,” said Hearn when told that David Avaneysan’s manager Neil Marsh would like to set up a fight with Conor Benn in 2022.
“I’d like to make the Amir Khan fight [against Conor Benn]. I’d like to make the Adrien Broner fight. These are fights that are much, much bigger than David Avanesyan, and with as much risk or maybe even less risk.
“But the offer they made for Conor Benn, he makes more than that for fighting [Chris] Algieri. So, it’s not like financially; it was a massive offer. I don’t know how much clearer I can be. I’m very honest on this situation.
“David Avanesyan is a very good fighter. I’d put him up in the leagues with Shawn Porter and those kinds of guys, and I think, even though Conor doesn’t agree with me, I think he needs another fight first.
“I think Chris Algieri is the perfect fight, the perfect step up [for Benn]. I’ve always said the one after [Adrian] Granados, Robert Guerrero, Victor Ortiz, Chris Algieri, these are the guys we want.
“We got one, so we did exactly what we said we were going to do, and I think David Avanesyan is a really good fighter with very with a low profile, high risk, low reward, but a really good fight,” said Hearn.
Khan will NEVER agree to fight Conor Benn, and it’s baffling that Hearn doesn’t want to give up on his dream of making a fight between them.
Khan doesn’t want to be a stepping stone for Benn, and Hearn should have given up on this idea. Instead of Hearn continually talking up a Khan-Benn fight, he needs to throw a ton of money at Kell to try and take the match with Conor.
Brook said this week that he would be interested in fighting Benn if he were given the right offer.
Avanesyan too risky for Benn
“I’m not saying we’ll never look at that fight [Benn vs. Avanesyan. Of course, we will. That could come with a world championship or world title eliminator or whatever.
“But let’s be honest, David Avanesyan really needs Conor Benn because otherwise, there are plenty of other fights out there.
“Neil Marsh turned down a world title eliminator with us [for Avanesyan] to fight Liam Taylor, but they don’t get any stick about that. I don’t have a bad word to say about David Avanesyan or Neil Marsh.
“How am I conning the public when I’m being honest with you and saying David Avanesyan is a really good fighter. I think we need another fight.
“Who would you rather see Conor Benn fight? Amir Khan or David Avanesyan? As the general public.
“Who would you rather see him [Conor Benn] fight? Adrien Broner or David Avanesyan. High risk, low reward. He’s a really good fighter, and it’s a really dangerous fight. But he’s irrelevant is the wrong word because that’s disrespectful, but compared to the bigger pictures of things.
“If was conning the public, I’d say, ‘Conor would smash him up; we don’t need him.’ David Avanesyan is good and dangerous, a good fighter. Can we make that fight next year?
“Yeah, maybe, but there are four or five people I’d rather make the fight for a lot more money, a lot bigger fights than David Avanesyan,” said Hearn.
Boxing fans would be disappointed if Benn faced Adrien Broner or Amir Khan in 2022 rather than a solid welterweight like Avanesyan, Jaron Ennis, or Vergil Ortiz Jr.
Benn’s next opponent Chris Algieri, 37, is another example of a poor opponent that the public isn’t interested in seeing him fight.
If Benn isn’t ready to fight relevant fighters at this point in his career, he could go back to the amateur ranks and get the experience needed for his promoter Hearn to have confidence in matching him against good opposition.
The way Hearn is matching Benn, it comes across like he’s just trying to create a fluff record to get him in position for a massive cash-out payday. In other words, it’s all smoke & mirrors with Conor, and he’s not groomed to win a world title eventually.
It looks like he’s just being moved to make money off his last name.
- Amir Khan vs. Kell Brook on Feb.19th live on ESPN+
- Amir Khan vs. Kell Brook: The Great British Payoff
- Conor Benn wants Keith Thurman after Maurice Hooker fight on April 23rd
- Eddie Hearn rules out Avanesyan, Vergil Ortiz Jr or Jaron Ennis for Conor Benn