Welterweight champion Keith ‘One Time’ Thurman thinks that Amir Khan should move back down to the 147lb division, after an unsuccessful trip up to the middleweight ranks, albeit at a catchweight of 155lb.
Khan moved up to face WBC champion and pound-for-pound star Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez at the newly built T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on Saturday night and fell to a devastating sixth round knockout having started brightly.
The fight was dubbed speed vs power and unsurprisingly to Thurman – who is currently preparing for his June world title fight against Shawn Porter – it was the power that came out on top.
Thurman exclusively told World Boxing News: “The fight happened how I thought it would and a lot of people in the boxing fraternity saw it ending the same way. Khan knew speed was going to be important and he would have watched the Canelo-Cotto fight and thought that his boxing skills were superior to Cotto’s and he would do a better job against the bigger and slower fighter in Canelo.
“I’m not the only ‘One Time’ puncher around and I am called it because I have that one big power punch in the locker – Canelo has it too and it wins fights. It often proves to be the difference.”
In the aftermath of the pay-per-view bout, questions will now be raised as to what is next for the two participants with a fight between Canelo and fellow middleweight champion Gennady ‘GGG’ Golovkin the most sought-after and talked about matchup in boxing right now.
“Firstly, Khan should move back down to 147lb without hesitation because he has no business at the bigger weights. He was a light welter fighting at middleweight and at his age and at this stage of his career, that is not right.
“Everyone wants the Canelo-GGG fight and the ball is in the court of the Mexican. He can choose whether he wants to fight GGG or postpone it again – it depends what he decides. It all depends on how eager Canelo is to prove that he is the best pound-for-pound fighter around,” Thurman, 27, said.
‘One Time’ also took a moment to comment on the current state of British boxing which has hit a prosperous purple patch – currently boasting 11 world champions.
He said: “It’s great to see British boxing back on the map and it is good to have worldwide competition keeping boxing a global sport. I have always been a fan and used to enjoy watching Ricky Hatton and Lennox Lewis, as well as other European fighters.
“Nowadays, I like the look of Anthony Joshua and Kell Brook who both have great potential as well as a world title. I am always willing to travel to places and many great fighters and big fights have taken place overseas throughout history. I am the ‘world’ champ so I am open to fight anywhere in the world – including the UK.”
Matt Horan is lead writer for WBN. Follow on Twitter @mhoran123