Manny Pacquiao is one of a handful of people who believe that Amir Khan has a good chance of beating WBC middleweight champion Saul “Canelo” Alvarez following a surprise announcement by Khan to face the Alvarez’s voluntary fight.
The fight, held at a 155-pound catch-weight as called for by the 160-pound Mexican champion, sees Khan make a substantial leap to the heavier weight class. The risky move has left critics nervous that the Bolton fighter, who usually fights at welterweight and would need to add eight pounds to his natural weight in order to take on Alvarez, could be placed in a compromising situation.
“He’s chasing this. And whether he wins or loses, he took the risk.”
Former world champion, “King Khan”, has twice previously been halted, at both lightweight and light welterweight, with his most notable as well as most recent defeat being at the hands of current WBC welterweight champion Danny Garcia in 2012.
Such defeats have added weight to Khan’s position as underdog in the up-coming contest against the hard-hitting Alvarez, further secured by the British boxer’s potential size disadvantage which may ultimately affect the speedy punches of the Englishman.
However, Pacquiao has come out to back Khan in the fight, refusing to believe there’s much weight to Khan’s underdog status going into the match, with the Filipino boxer rejecting the widely accepted view that play on the day will swing entirely in the Mexican’s favour.
“I see a lot of people ripping Amir, but he’s got the guts to take on the challenge.”
The eight-time division performance on the night will be entirely dependent on his preparation and game plan though many critics are questioning if Khan’s body will be able to handle a beating from the hard-hitting champion.
Despite having a record 46-1-1 in hand, with 32 wins by knockout, Alvarez is not taking the British boxer lightly. Noting that Khan’s speed is an issue of concern, the young Mexican’s supporter’s feel that Khan is one to watch as both Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr. have shunned him.
Former lineal middleweight champion Andre Ward is also backing Khan, saying, “I see a lot of people ripping Amir, but he’s got the guts to take on the challenge.”
He added: “He’s chasing this. And whether he wins or loses, he took the risk.”