The manner of Amir Khan’s defeat to long-term rival Kell Brook in February had many of us in the boxing community considering questioning whether Khan should hang up the gloves having lived the fighter’s life for 24 years now. The man who calls himself King Khan still holds the record for being the youngest boxing medallist for team GB in a heroic surge towards his Olympic dream in Athens which had the worlds biggest promotors competing for his signature. Golden Boy Promotions reported that 4.4 million viewers tuned in to his debut to see what all the hype was about.
Amir wasted no time in the pro ranks racking up some impressive wins displaying freakishly fast hand speed andring generalship causing problems for opponents early in his professional career. Though questions over his toughness came in to play as Breidis Prescott demonstrated how the pro game differs from the amateurs scoring a brutal first round knockout. This appeared to be a crucial learning curve for Khan as an 8-fight win streak followed including some notable victories as he began to prove his doubters wrong. By now Khan had won various domestic titles and became a household name in the US, unifying the light-welterweight division defeating highly respected world level fighters such as Super Zab Judah and hard-hitting Marcos El-Chino Maidana. The defeat against Breidis Prescott now seemed like a distant memory as Amir King Khan reached his prime.
I was shouting for Khan to chase the fight with Tim Bradley during his prime who held the WBC and WBO titles at the time. As the old saying goes; “Styles make fights” and I feel the eye-catching boxing skills of these two fighters would’ve been an intriguing 50-50 fight. The fight got away and nobody ever seems to talk about which direction Khan’s legacywould’ve went had he fought the likes of Bradley and Kell Brook in his prime years. Instead, a disputed loss to Lamont Peterson was next and despite the loss, the big fights continued. Next up it was Danny Garcia who landed a money shot. It seemed to me that Amir had something to prove to himself by fighting hard-hitting pressure fighters who stylistically seemed all wrong for him. Canelo Alvarez proved too much as did Terrance Crawford, though I consider these guys to be generational fighters. From this perspective, I can understand why the Kell Brook fight didn’t materialise.
Yet the Brook fight was agreed out of the blue towards the end of last year. Many thought the fight had been agreed too late until With Kell Brook rolled back the years in arguably a career best performance. We now ask ourselves the questions“Was it too late for only one of the fighters?” “Would the result have been any different if the fight happened in between 2014 and 2017?”
The legacy remains unwritten as Khan has hinted that his career is not over since his defeat to Kell Brook earlier this year. We often see fighters avenging their losses which can greatly change how their legacy is remembered; could Khan possibly rematch and defeat the likes of Kell Brook and Danny Garcia? Outside of boxing Khan has publicly spoken of his charity work and giving back to his community over the years proving to be a massive influencer in Asia and his legacy looks set to continue with Khan Promotions officially up and running. Where do you rank Amir Khan’s career to date? How much if anything has he got left to give to this sport inside the ring? Whatever he does from here, his legacy in British boxing was well earned.