By: Waqas Ali
Amir Khan’s career is somewhat hanging in the balance as many spectators believe it’s time for him to hang up the gloves.
His recent contest with WBO welterweight champion Terence Crawford ended in turmoil as he decided that he could no longer continue after suffering a low blow.
The bout took place in Madison Square Garden in front of 14,000 plus spectators.
The British boxer was knocked down in the first round by a counter right hand – followed by a left hook on top.
Khan, 32, managed to recover from the knockdown and throw his trademark of combinations in the second round but did very little effect on Crawford.
Crawford, 31, was looking rather comfortable and used his counter-punching efficiently and landed some left hands and right hooks.
In the fourth round, it was pretty much competitive as both fighters landed little but threw virtually the same hard-hitting shots.
By the fifth, both fighters threw punches that got the rising to their feet. Early on Khan threw a dazzling left hook to Crawford that wooed the crowd but very little in terms of damage.
Crawford (35-0 26 KOs), also known as Bud, came back in the last 90 seconds of the fight with more hard hitting punches. Around the 40 second mark, Crawford landed a big uppercut Khan that pushed him back a little.
Their punches were sweet to see but sour to taste.
Within the five completed rounds, Khan, a former two-time world champion, landed less than 10 punches in four of them with an average accuracy rate of just 24%.
Crawford, who had fought in the welterweight division now three-times, landed 26 of 53 punches with a connect rate of 49% in the fifth. His average connect rate was around 40%.
In the sixth round, Khan was hit with a clear low blow on his groin which came from a left hook by Crawford.
He was awarded the full five minutes but lasted about 45 seconds before his corner came in and said that Virgil did not want Khan continuing to fight.
Crawford was leading 49-45 50-44 49-45 on the cards at the time of the stoppage.
Compubox total statistics revealed that Crawford landed 88 of 211 (41%) punches thrown and Khan landed 44 of 182 (24%). In the power punching department, Crawford landed 58 of 116 attempted – connecting at a rate of 50%.
In spite of fans and viewers insisting Khan to retire, he feels he still has a lot more in the tank to deliver.
“I have a lot left in me,” Khan (33-5) told BBC Sport.
“I will always get opportunities.”
Asked if it would be the last bout of his career, Khan said: “Not at all. Apart from the one knockdown, it wasn’t a brutal fight.
“I am going to spend time with the family and take time off. I’ll see what comes up after this.”
According to a poll on Twitter conducted by EditinKing Boxing, out of 6,100 plus voters, 58% say that Khan should retire and 35% says that he should fight Brook.
What next for Amir ‘King’ Khan?
— EditinKing Boxing (@EditinKing) April 21, 2019
The boxing world both from the casual and hardcore fans perspective have mainly stated that he should retire.
The styles and variations of Keith Thurman, Errol Spence and Shawn Porter could be seen as too strong and powerful.
Considering his chin has been his biggest flaw, it would be a great risk for him to fight those guys.
The only opponent that has been debated for so many years is former IBF welterweight champion Kell Brook, who is from Sheffield.
One must keep in mind that they had sparring sessions together in the past when they were amateurs.
Their out-of-ring rivalry began in 2012 when they both appeared on Sky Sports TV show ‘Ringside’ debating who out-classed the other in the amateur sparring sessions.
Since then both fighters had been at loggerheads with each other over the years. Brook did not win a world title until he beat Shawn Porter in a close competitive fight in August 2014.
He then challenged Gennady Golovkin for the WBC, IBF and IBO middleweight belts in September 2016 but failed to come close to winning.
He then defended his IBF welterweight title by facing boxing technician Errol Spence Jr in May 2017 but was stopped in the eleventh round.
Khan challenged Saul Alvarez for the WBC middleweight belt in May 2016 but failed to prevail.
Since the beginning of 2019, the talks of the highly anticipated British clash between Khan and Brook have died out due to both men hitting their ages and many fans believe that the bout should’ve taken place back in 2014 or 2015 when both fighters were at their peak.
But based on the whole scenario and the evidence brought forth, it is a difficult one to make considering the amount of money that can be made with the Brook fight.
However, should that fight be made and if he lost to Brook, it would haunt him for the rest of his boxing career. Apart from the Brook fight, it would be best to hang up the gloves and call it a day.
Khan has achieved big things in his boxing career. He became the youngest British boxing Olympic Silver medallist in 2004. He fought Mario Kindelán who is considered to be one of the best amateur boxers ever.
He’s fought some of the best names in boxing today such as Marco Antonio Barrera, Andriy Kotelnik, Paul Malignaggi, Marcos Maidana, Zab Judah, Julio Diaz, Luis Collazo. Devon Alexander, Chris Algieri, Lamont Peterson, Danny Oscar Garcia & Saul Alvarez.
Whatever one’s opinion may be of Khan, there is no denying the ruthless speed which is equivalent to the speed of lightning, which he has provided over the years and is certainly a household name wherever he fights.
He not only fights for himself. But for Bolton. For England. For Great Britain and for people around the world.