The middleweight championship fight between Canelo Alvarez and Amir Khan is less than a month away, and the two boxers are preparing for their first bout of 2016. Alvarez is the heavy favorite, but Khan remains confident ahead of the biggest fight of his career.
Coming off the heels of a unanimous decision victory over Miguel Cotto, Alvarez is a +500 favorite, via Bovada.lv. Khan has +350 odds to pull off the upset, but the Brit says he enjoys being in this position.
“I think it's great to be the underdog,” Khan said on a conference call this week. “This is the first fight I'm walking into as the underdog because normally I'm walking in as the favorite, and possibly a bit of pressure on you, where this time I'm going to be walking in as the underdog, and that way it's a time where I can prove people this is where I belong. I belong as one of the best fighters in the world, and it's going to be a great test for me."
It’s been nearly four years since Khan’s last loss. He’s won five consecutive fights, including four as a welterweight. Khan was a significant favorite in his last fight, defeating Chris Algieri by unanimous decision in a fight that was closer than many expected it would be.
Looking to secure a fight against Floyd Mayweather or Manny Pacquiao, Khan hasn’t fought in almost a year. Unable to land a big pay-per-view fight as a welterweight, he decided to move up eight pounds and meet Alvarez at a catchweight of 155 pounds.
The May 7 bout marks the fifth consecutive bout in which Alvarez will be fighting at 155 pounds, but Khan believes he can win in spite of the size disadvantage.
"My skills are what's going to win me this fight," Khan said. "I know I'm not going to be stronger than Canelo in any way. I'm not going to be thinking I'm stronger than Canelo, but I'm going to stand with him and fight with him. I think my skills in this fight will win me the fight, and I don't know if the speed I have is something that ‑‑ I don't think that Canelo's experienced speed with combinations and speed with power.
"I've been watching video of Canelo, and day after day it's getting more and more confident that I can beat this guy."
Alvarez suffered his first ever loss when he dropped to 152 pounds to face Floyd Mayweather, but he’s won four consecutive fights since. Prior to beating Cotto for the middleweight belt, he knocked out James Kirkland in the third round of their fight in May of last year.
The winner is expected to face Gennady Golovkin in September in a middleweight title unification bout.