x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 17 January 2018

Amir Khan says bout with Luis Collazo ‘will steal the show’ in Las Vegas on May 3

British-Pakistani boxer Amir Khan says his fight with Luis Collazo will be the main attraction on same fight card led by Floyd Mayweather Jr and Marcos Maidana, writes Omar Al Raisi.

Amir Khan, during a workout at the Gloves Community Centre on March 24, 2014 in Bolton, England, says his fight will be the real main event in Las Vegas on May 3. Alex Livesey/Getty Images
Amir Khan, during a workout at the Gloves Community Centre on March 24, 2014 in Bolton, England, says his fight will be the real main event in Las Vegas on May 3. Alex Livesey/Getty Images

Amir Khan’s bout with Luis Collazo is being billed as the co-main event in Las Vegas on May 3, but the British-Pakistani boxer said fans will quickly recognise the real fight of the night.

“I can tell you, our fight will steal the show,” Khan told The National. “We are two exciting fighters, one with skills and speed and the other a big hitter.

“It is a 50-50 fight and that’s what the fans want to see.”

He said he foresees little drama in the main event, which has the unbeaten Floyd Mayweather Jr taking on WBA welterweight champion Marcos Maidana, so fight aficionados are more likely to be focusing on his bout, which is the penultimate fight on the card at the MGM Grand.

“We all know what is going to happen in the Mayweather-Maidanas fight,” Khan said.

Khan believes Maidana, the Argentine he defeated by unanimous decision in 2010, gatecrashed the main event, snagging the lucrative date with Mayweather that ought to be his.

Maidana recently told The National that he was the real winner of his fight with Khan, but the 27-year-old former WBO light welterweight champion dismisses that claim.

“I don’t think there is any arguments left there,” Khan said.

“I dominated all the rounds and put him on the floor, except in the 10th round where I got hit by a couple of his big shots. But I was on my feet.

“If he manages to beat Mayweather and wants to re-fight me, I will give him a re-fight.”

Khan said that he has defeated another fighter on the May 3 card, the American Marcus Molina, who was unable to come out for the 11th round in their 2012 bout.

Molina fights the well-regarded Adrien Broner in another matchup that Khan sees little merit in.

“If they want to fight my leftovers, that’s fine with me,” he said.

Khan said his attention is on Collazo, the American from Brooklyn who has won nearly half his fights by knockout.

“I am ready,” he said. “I have all my focus on Luis Collazo and no one else.

“Collazo is a great fighter, a big puncher and I want to face the big hitters and prove my doubters wrong. I’ve been hearing non-stop from media and fans that I can’t handle big punchers.”

Much of that goes back to his loss, by fourth-round technical knockout, to Danny Garcia two years ago.

“I’ve said this many times and I will say it again: I blame myself for being too careless and got caught against Garcia,” Khan said.

“I have improved a lot moving up to 147 pounds. I want to showcase my skills. I have a game plan and you will see the best of me on May 3.”

Khan recently became the latest prominent boxer to sign with Al Haymon, a mysterious but powerful figure in the fight game who also manages Mayweather, Garcia, Maidana, Broner, Eddie Guerrero and Lamont Peterson.

“He has the best fighters in the game on his roster,” Khan said. “Boxing is a tough sport and we boxers are sometimes not treated the right way.

“Al Haymon has the boxers’ interest first. He advises us, he protects us and organises the best fights with the right opponents. He is a very good person. He has the biggest contacts and networks in the game.

“I have signed with him with the mindset to be in the biggest fights in boxing and Al Haymon can do that for me.

“There is not much about him out there. He likes to stay behind the scenes.”

Haymon will serve as Khan’s manager and agent, although, the fighter remains a client of Golden Boy Promotions where rumours have surfaced of a rift between the company’s founder, Oscar De La Hoya, and Richard Schaefer, the chief executive.

It is rumoured that Schaefer may leave Golden Boy to partner in a promotions company with Haymon after the May 3 show.

“Honestly, I have not read anything in the media about a rift between Oscar and Richard,” Khan said. “I don’t know anything about this.

“I don’t really get myself into politics. I am a fighter and I focus on my training and that’s what I have been doing the last few months.

“I am still contracted to Golden Boy. I have a great relationship with both Oscar and Richard.”

He will re-evaluate his position after he meets Collazo. “After that fight, I will think about my next move carefully,” he said.


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