The time has finally come for Amir Khan to have the big fight he’s been searching for. After a few years of unsuccessfully trying to land a bout with Floyd Mayweather or Mannby Pacquiao, the British welterweight is set to face boxing’s biggest draw in the main event of a pay-per-view.
Canelo Alvarez is the new face of boxing, and he’ll put his middleweight championship on the line against Khan on Saturday night. Khan has won five consecutive fights, and he’s been rewarded with about against one of the best pound-for-pound boxers in the world.
"I think it worked out for the best," Khan said via ESPN.com. "I've always wanted to be in a big fight like this and give the U.K. fans a huge fight and this is the chance to give them a big fight but not only to give them the fight, but to win it as well. I've always said I belong at the top and this is my time where I show that.
"It's amazing to be headlining here with a big name like Canelo, who's a superstar. People have me as a guy who has no chance. But this is what makes this fight really exciting for me because I'm guy who's supposed to walk in there and get beat but I'm not gonna let that happen."
It looked like Khan would be the man to take on Mayweather in 2014, but instead the best fighter of the last decade chose to go up against Marcos Maidana. Mayweather passed up the chance to face Khan last September when he took on Andre Berto. Khan was thought to be the frontrunner to take on Pacquiao in April, but a third fight between Pacquiao and Timothy Bradley was made instead.
Now, Khan has a chance to prove that he is an elite boxer. Khan was unsuccessful when going up against the best opponent on his resume, suffering a fourth-round TKO against Danny Garcia nearly four years ago. He hasn’t lost since, but he hasn’t been in the main event of a PPV in the United States or faced a top fighter.
Khan has made it no secret that he’d do whatever it took to get his big PPV fight, including fighting in an unfamiliar weight class. He’s making the transition from 147 pounds to 155 pounds for his shot to be known as an elite boxer, as well as a major payday.
"It's a big challenge," Khan said after weighing in at exactly 155 pounds. "I'm up against a great fighter, but I am focused and 100 percent confident I can go in there and win it."
Khan's purse for the fight is $2 million, but he'll end up making more than that. Earlier this week, it was reported by the Daily Star that, including money from the UK TV deal and the fight purse, Khan will make $13 million for Saturday’s fight, easily the largest prize money of his career. Alvarez will earn at least $3.5 million, but between his purse and a percentage of the PPV profits, he could be in for an eight figure payday.
The first boxing PPV ever at Las Vegas’ T-Mobile arena begins at 9 p.m. ET. The event can be had for $64.95 in standard definition and $69.99 in HD.
Tale of the Tape
Canelo Alvarez Amir Khan
Age: 25 29
Height: 5’9 5’8 1/2
Weight: 155 lbs 155 lbs
Reach: 70.5” 71”
Stance: Orthodox Orthodox
Record: 46-1-1 (32 KO) 31-3 (19 KO)