By Niall Doran
There’s been a lot of press activity and statements in the US in recent days ahead of this weekend’s big welterweight clash between Amir Khan and Devon Alexander, that will likely see the winner advance to a very big fight in 2015. Heading up some of the big talk that’s floated about this week has been none other than Golden Boy boss man Oscar De La Hoya.
This week De La Hoya has been quoted as saying “One thing for sure is that as Amir Khan’s promoter, I’m going to push as hard as I can to get that Mayweather fight, because that’s what he deserves. I truly feel that if a Manny Pacquiao fight doesn’t happen next year for Floyd, then he has no choice but to fight Amir Khan, especially if Amir Khan has a spectacular performance.” In a separate interview De La Hoya also mentioned that if he cannot get the Mayweather fight for Khan in 2015 that he will look to push for a Khan vs Pacquiao showdown, “I’m pushing for a Mayweather fight and I’m also pushing for a Pacquiao fight”, said the promoter.
POTENTIAL OPTIONS FOR KHAN
If Amir needed an incentive to win on Saturday, he certainly has it now. One would thing a Pacquiao fight with Khan would potentially be easier to make, given the fact De La Hoya and Arum are now on amicable terms again and speaking to one another, with the ‘cold war’ apparently over. Khan has also been let down by Mayweather before when it looked like he was almost certain to get the fight last May, only for Mayweather in the end opting to take on Marcos Maidana instead. Of course you’ve also got the recent news that Mayweather has had to contend with allegedly been witness to a murder-suicide involving friend and rapper Earl Hayes and his wife. Mayweather’s mind state might not even be on boxing at present and it could be a while before we hear an announcement from him.
You have to admire De La Hoya’s belief in his charge with seemingly unflappable faith in Amir Khan. Khan is coming off a terrific performance against Luis Collazo last May and it will be interesting to see this Saturday if he has made even further improvements and adjustments to his style since starting to train with renowned trainer Virgil Hunter in recent times. I really liked how he took his time against Collazo last time out, his use of footwork and blistering hand speed whilst moving in and out was a joy to watch at times.
Of course there is also the possibility of a big UK showdown next year between IBF welterweight champion Kell Brook and Amir Khan, which arguably could pack out Wembley Stadium next summer in front of a potential 100,000 fans.
TASK AT HAND
Something that I think has held Amir back in the past is quite simply – his lack of focus. It seems like when he’s come unstuck and lost in the past, it’s being during a time where he was talking about getting a big fight and in the middle of a good run of wins. It just seems to me that sometimes he looks ahead a little bit too much. However I think he’ll have learned from this by this stage of his career and I truly believe he knows he has to stay focused and win impressively at this point in his professional campaign, if he’s to ever land a gigantic fight with either Mayweather or Pacquiao.
So many options seem to be out there for Khan, he’s just got to get past Alexander on Saturday – which won’t be easy (at least on paper). Alexander is always tricky and being a southpaw can always bring up problems. I think Khan will be focused more than ever though and I expect him to look good on Saturday.
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