Amir Khan, 26-2, 18 KO’s, has been reinstated as the WBA super light welterweight champion after Lamont Peterson was proven a cheater and PED abuser. Khan lost a hotly disputed decision to Peterson in December of 2011 and the belief is that he was abusing PEDs, giving him that edge in their first fight. When the rematch was set, a dirty test would push Peterson out of the picture and leave Khan without an opponent.
Stepping up to the challenge is the undefeated Danny Garcia, 23-0, 14 KO’s, the current holder of the WBC light welterweight title, making this a unification bout and a highly interesting one.
Khan is one of the most popular fighters in the game and is considered by many to be one of the best pound for pound fighters. He has wins over Marcos Maidana, Zab Judah, Paulie Malignaggi, and Marco Antonio Barrera, but there is still a question mark over his head. He has great power, but he tends to tire down the stretch and can be vulnerable late. Against the dangerous Maidana, he struck early and dropped him, but held onto survive in the later rounds, eking by with a decision win. His exhaustion later in the fight is the key to victory for Garcia.
Garcia is relatively unknown and is going into this fight as a heavy underdog. He has wins over notable opponents like Nate Campbell (UD-10), Kendall Holt (SD-12) and most recently, Erik Morales (UD-12), but all three men were well past their primes. He is facing a motivated and prime Khan in this fight and if he allows Khan to work as he did the ancient Morales, then he will be in big trouble and it will be early in the fight.
In this fight, Khan will be looking to send a statement to the boxing world. His loss to Peterson has been erased with the steroid test and a quick KO win would re-establish himself as a big player in boxing. How well Garcia takes the punch will dictate what happens in this fight.
The motivation of Garcia will mean a great deal in this fight and will make this competitive and close. I expect an early lead for Khan to be the big difference late, leading to a clear but close decision win for the British superstar. Khan by UD by scores in the 115-113 range.