Former light-welterweight champion Amir Khan has emerged as the frontrunner to oppose Floyd Mayweather Jr. next year, with a potential clash against Devon Alexander on December 7 falling apart after lengthy discussions.
Khan, 26, has been locked in negotiations with Alexander for the past several weeks as both sides looked to seal an IBF welterweight title fight, firstly in Dubai and eventually at the Barclays Center in New York, only for the contracts to go unsigned.
The Briton had held out formally agreeing any deal until Mayweather fought Saul Alvarez on September 14 to see if there was a chance he would be considered as the pound for pound king’s next opponent – which seems to be the case for Khan via several publications.
If selected by Mayweather for what could be a May 3 WBC welterweight title shot at the MGM Grand, ‘King’ Khan would squeeze out former conqueror Danny Garcia, who impressed in his recent chief support slot on ‘The One’ against Argentinian Lucas Matthysse.
Its no secret that Mayweather has favoured Golden Boy fighters for his last few outings and with Khan back to winning ways in April, his promoters may see it as the right time to push forward the former Olympic silver medallist for his ultimate chance at the world’s best.
Mayweather-Khan would then leave Alexander looking at a Brooklyn defence possibly against five-time world title holder Zab Judah, with Khan maybe set for a lower-profile warm-up bout as he attempts to become the first to inflict defeat on ‘Money’ Mayweather.
36 year-old Mayweather was at his invincible best in recently dominating 43-fight unbeaten ‘Canelo’ in Las Vegas and Khan would face a tall order on recent form after labouring past Julio Diaz in April.
Prior to that fight, the Bolton man defeated lightweight fringe contender Carlos Molina and lost back-to-back against Lamont Peterson and Garcia, leaving some questioning whether Khan deserves the opportunity that has been thrust upon him in the press.