It was a year ago when Timothy Bradley passed on a fight against Amir Khan that drew heavy criticism, much of it generated by the British champion. Khan said Bradley was ducking him and scared of him. Well Bradley passed on the fight, let his contract run out with Gary Shaw and Ken Thompson, and then signed with Top Rank. Bradley went on to fight Manny Pacquiao for much more money. Khan went on to lose a controversial decision in December to Lamont Peterson, a guy Bradley dominated.
So now Khan needs to win to regain some of the tarnish partly because of the loss and partly because of the long layoff. The reason Khan hasn’t fought for so long was that a rematch with Peterson fell through because Peterson tested positive for a synthetic testosterone that had been perscribed to him for medical reasons. Khan is working to regain the two belts he lost to Peterson, who admitted he was using the same treatment prior to their fight in December. But in the loss, Khan was exposed for his struggles against pressure and fighting inside, where he tends to take more punishment than he should.
Now Khan will fight Danny Garcia, who holds the WBC belt. If you don’t remember, the WBC belt was the title Bradley has won twice, only to relinquish it the first time and then was stripped for bogus reasons the second time that the WBC tried to window dress by saying Bradley was a champion in recess.
Khan said Garcia is a similar fighter to Peterson and he is prepared for his style. But Khan can’t afford a second consecutive loss so he really needs to stay disciplined and not take unneccessary punishment. The carrot dangling in front of him is a possible fight against Floyd Mayweather. Because Khan works out with Manny Pacquiao and they share trainer Freddie Roach, it’s unlikely Khan will secure that lucrative fight. So he’ll have to settle for Mayweather, whose opponents earn half what they would against Pacquiao. If the fight is offered to Khan immediately, he will have some tough decisions to make. He has fought his whole career at 140, and Mayweather last fought at 154. It’s likely Mayweather will leave Khan no choice but to go up in weight.
But there’s also the chance Khan could fight Bradley if Top Rank doesn’t make the Bradley-Pacquiao rematch on Nov. 10. With all the controversy swirling around Bradley’s victory over Pacquiao, this fight could generate much, much more than a year ago. It’s a fight Khan covets, and Bradley really wants to beat up Khan. Of course the main hurdle is if Top Rank and Golden Boy can work together to make the fight happen.
But first things first. Garcia is a tough, undefeated opponent. He won the title beating a very old and worn Erik Morales, who was gifted Bradley’s title. So Garcia has a lot to prove in this fight. A victory will move him among the elite fighters in the division.So you can bet Garcia will come in hungry and determined. That can make up for a lot, in what we saw from Josesito Lopez’s stunning victory over Victor Ortiz.