Freddie Roach has backed Amir Khan to be his next Manny Pacquiao and rule the Boxing world has the pound for pound best around.
Prior to Saturday nights second defence of the WBA title against Paulie Malignaggi, Freddy Roach told us that he believed that Amir Khan has all the tools to be his next Manny Pacquiao.
Having guided Pacquiao to to the pinnacle of the sport and current pound for pound king, Roach believes Khan, 23, has the makings of being the ‘PacMan’s’ successor.
|Roach with Pacquiao
“That’s who people compare him to,” Roach said. “In Vancouver, my friend who owns the gym said ‘Freddie, that’s your next Manny’. I said ‘I know’.
“People tell me that and I envision that but I don’t say it too often.
“He has all the tools to do it but as Manny says to me, ‘you train me and get me ready but it’s up to me to win the fight’.
“And it’s up to Amir to go out there and perform and win the fight, so I can only do so much.”
Even in that Prescott defeat, Roach sees a similar career path to Pacquiao’s rise to the top, the PacMan was also beaten early in his career, a devastating 3rd round knockout to journey man Philipino Rustico Torrecampo in 1996, and then after a 16 fight winning run after that loss, he suffered another 3rd round knockout to Thailand’s Medgoen Singsurat in the first defence of his first world title, the WBC flyweight crown.
“Manny got knocked out twice before he was world champion. Amir was 21 when he got knocked out and he was a kid too.
“He has less room for error because at a young age he’s put himself in a very hot division, packed with talent.
|Khan squaring up with Malignaggi prior to Saturdays win
“But I see it as a great opportunity to have greatness.
“Whoever wins out of those four or five guys is going to be the next pound-for-pound king, I feel.”
“I’m still preparing him but I definitely think he’s ready with his amateur background and we’ve come a long way. This is our fifth fight together (Malignaggi) and he’s come a long way.
“He’s a talented kid but he is young, though, and everyone thinks we’re ducking Maidana and these guys but that’s not true.
“Make that fight a megafight, let the promoters do their job and make it a big, big fight.
“Maidana, nobody really knows in America and Amir is not really well known in America so let’s build these guys up here and all over the world and they can get paid for what it’s worth.
Khan was thankful for the praise off Roach, and was humbled enough to say he would be happy to do half of what the Philippino has achieved.
“It gives you confidence when Freddie thinks you’re that good.
“Freddie knows how hard I train and how hard Manny trains and even if I did half of what Manny Pacquiao has done in my career I’d be a happy person.
“So it gives you a big push and a lot of buzz.” for Britishboxers.co.uk
A young cocky’ Manny Pacquiao’s First loss as a professional against Rustico Torrecampo
Manny Pacquiao loses for a second time early in his carear, against Thailand’s Medgoen Singsurat in the first defence of his WBC world flyweight title.
Pacquiao then went on to do this…
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