British boxer Amir Khan is still hopeful he could meet either Floyd Mayweather Jr or Manny Pacquiao before the two boxing greats hang up their gloves forever.
Khan, a Muslim who just ended participating in the Islamic month of Ramadan, told British daily The Guardian that his bruised nose is a reminder of his turning professional nine years ago from his Olympic silver medal finish as a teenager in 2005.
Since then, he had fought in the UK and U.S., moved up three weight classes and won several boxing titles at the young age of 27, although he started to box when he was 8. Boxing, it turns out, runs in the family since a younger sibling, Haroon, is the unbeaten super flyweight champ with a 5-0 record.
Admitting that boxing is a bloody sport, Khan shared that his mum and wife couldn't bear to watch him and his brother in the ring because of too much blood and pain involved. He acknowledged sharing the same tension when watching Haroon fight "because there's nothing you can do to help him."
His last ring victory was during the undercard fight in Mayweather's first bout with Argentinean boxer Marcos Maidana on May 3 versus Luis Collazo whom he beat in Las Vegas. But Khan's face was also swollen after 12 rounds. Actually, it was him who was supposed to battle Money May, but Mayweather opted for Maidana despite Khan winning an online voting contest.
After his match with Collazo, Khan stayed in the backroom and watched the main event on TV. The British boxer said he was shocked to see Maidana dominate the first five rounds. He said, "I expected Mayweather to win easily but styles make fights. Maidana put so much pressure on him that Floyd didn't have room to throw his punches."
With Mayweather having reneged on a contract, Khan concedes that at times he no longer believes in Money May's promise that they will fight one day. "I know he needs me to make the really big pay-per-view numbers and money motivates him. It drives him because he can make much more fighting me than Maidana. I'm big in the UK, Dubai, Asia and places where Floyd;s not as well known," Khan boasted to The Guardian.
However, boxing observers are divided on PPV sales, with some believing the dream Pacquiao-Mayweather fight speculated to take place in May 2015, possibly in Dubai, would break existing PPV records, while others think the two pound-for-pound kings are past their primes.
For Khan, who is hopeful that he would be Mayweather's last fight, said that as the two great boxers become older, someone has to take their places. He considers Mayweather a very technical fight whose matches Khan compares to a game of chess, while he sees Pacquiao as the harder fighter since the Filipino congressman is more aggressive and more intense.
With the two having selected Maidana and Chris Algieri for their second 2014 bouts, respectively, Khan acknowledges there's little chance he could fight them this year. His next fight is probably in December, likely against Robert Guerrero or Devon Alexander.