EXCLUSIVE: Amir Khan reflects on loss, gives props to Terence Crawford
Amir Khan has had time to sit back and reflect on what was a six-round loss to one of the greatest fighters on the planet.
The Briton was halted following a low-blow in the sixth round of American star Terence Crawford’s biggest career victory thus far.
After a couple of weeks digesting what transpired at Madison Square Garden, Khan spoke to WBN to air his take.
Always gracious when suffering a reverse, the Bolton man took time to praise Crawford for his obviously exceptional skills
“I tried my best and obviously I didn’t succeed. I’ll just go back to the drawing board,” Khan exclusively told World Boxing News, before explaining why he took the fight initially. “I just wanted to see how I did against a top, top level fighter, and obviously I fell short.
“I’m not going to take anything away from Crawford. He’s a great fighter with great skill. Maybe not the strongest I’ve faced, but someone who is very smart in the ring.
“He’s an amazing fighter, just overall he does everything well.
“I believe whoever he faces he will give big problems to. I mean, Spence, Pacquaio or Thurman at 147, Crawford will give them all problems.
“A lot of the top ten fighters he would take apart.”
Asked what Crawford did well compared to the many champions he’s faced in the past, Khan replied: “He has a great IQ and is probably the toughest I’ve fought.
“I’ve got a good ring IQ myself, but he was probably up there with me, or maybe better.
“I thought my speed would help me in the fight. But obviously, when someone has that good an IQ, speed might not work against them. You have to come up with something else then.”
On how the contest may have developed had it been allowed to continue, Khan says he witnessed Crawford slowing down in that final round.
“I’ve watched the video back again and Crawford started good early,” he pointed out. He got some success in the fight and started fast.
“But you could see him slowing down. In the second half of the fight, he would have slowed down. That’s when I would have got some good shots off.
“Before the fight got stopped, I could see how tired he was in the corner (when watching it back). He was huffing and puffing. But I didn’t see that at the time, just how hard he was breathing.
“Even when I was recovering from that low shot.
“I was trying different things. But I got hit below the belt and that’s when the fight ended. I don’t know how the fight would have gone on,” Khan concluded.
A welcome break has led Khan to now begin the process of working out his next move.
Fighting in the Middle East has always interested the one-time super-lightweight king and could very well be on the cards this summer.
As for the likes of Kell Brook or Manny Pacquiao, it could be spring or summer of 2020 before something big comes Khan’s way again.
Phil Jay is Editor of World Boxing News. Follow on Twitter @PhilDJay