By Courtney Riley
Bureaucrats and spinmeisters ruins it for everyone and in boxing it’s no different. As of late, Amir Khan has been accused playing the bureaucrat, but his intellect (or seeming lack of) has spun the majority of the public against him. Khan was ringside for the Danny Garcia vs Robert Guerrero bout last weekend where he was on scouting duty. He has been installed as the mandatory challenger for the winner of Floyd Mayweather’s vacated crown. That winner turned out to be Danny Garcia, the underrated champion who short-circuited Khan’s senses in the 4th round of their WBC & WBA light-welterweight world title clash back in 2012. Khan’s senses seemed to have forsaken him since they were knocked clean from his head by a sweet Garcia left-hook, or several.
At the weekend, Khan made headlines, not for being the mandatory challenger, but for his engagement in a back and forth verbal spat with the retired P4P Champ, Floyd Mayweather. Khan was goading Mayweather for not fighting him and levelled accusations that the now-retired champion for being ‘scared’. Mayweather instead opted to fight Maidana, with whom Khan toiled and battled to an entertaining victory back in 2010; Floyd then agreed to fight number 2 fighter in the world, Manny Pacquiao. Khan missed out on the ‘Money’ but he chased anyway. That chasing has seen him fight only twice in the past couple years, firstly against Devon Alexander then against Chris Algieri. He looked pretty impressive against the former but he really struggled against the latter. Yet, he had the nerve to call out a retired fighter who many observers rank as the best fighter of this era.
While he was there scouting Garcia and goading Mayweather, his team failed to agree one of the biggest fights in world boxing at present: Amir Khan vs Kell Brook. This came just a few weeks after his team failed in their bid to secure a fight with Manny Pacquiao for the Filipino’s final bout in April. Manny then stated that ‘there were a lot of middle men – a lot [of] people in [the] negotiations – a lot of representatives from him and that is the reason why it didn’t get pushed through.’ Khan has since rebuffed that statement but Eddie Hearn, Brook’s promoter, has since come out with similar sentiments to Manny’s regarding Khan bureaucratic style of negotiation.
Khan claimed that Mayweather was ‘scared’ to face him when Floyd opted to face the monster-punching Maidana instead before facing other best fighter in the world in Pacquiao. That ‘scared’ argument is idiotic. According to widespread reports, Brook’s promoter has revealed that Khan has made demands for a whopping 80% of the fight revenue should the two face-of, as well as being guaranteed a minimum 8-figure sum for the fight. Again, that is idiotic. Lastly, Khan has publicly stated his desire to face his one-time conqueror, Garcia in a rematch. That fight will generate a lot less money for Khan than he would if he faced Brook in an all-British clash at Wembley in the summer. The only sense would be that, should Khan beat Garcia for the WBC belt and legitimise himself as champion with some American buzz behind him, he would gain some much needed sensible grounding from where to make those ridiculous demands if he so chooses to negotiate a WBC-IBF unification against Brook in the near future. If that is the case, there might be some method to the madness but please note that Gracia will not simply roll over for Khan. Amir may taste the canvas again if and when the two meet.
Only time will tell if Khan’s bureaucracy will prove him to be the winner in this crazy game of spin and dodge ‘ems.