Despite several reports earlier this week stating that the talks between WBA light welterweight champion Amir Khan and unbeaten European champion Paul McCloskey were dead and buried, it appears that there are still negotiations taking place between the two parties.
Puzzlingly after Khan and McCloskey themselves both said that the fight was definitely not happening, Khan’s team have made another offer to McCloskey which according to a report from BBC Sport is around 3 times what McCloskey made for his last fight.
McClosley later told the Londonderry Sentinal:
“It’s a fight I want but it’s not a fight I’m desperate to have, I know that maybe four or five years ago I probably would have fought Khan for nothing but I deserve to be where I am.”
Of course, his last fight was for a European title, and a bout with Khan would be for a world title, so a decent purse is to be expected. And certainly, Khan defending his WBA strap would also generate much more money than ten European defenses for McCloskey.
The other name forever lurking on the periphery whenever Khan is looking for an opponent is Colombian puncher Bredis Prescott, who knocked a still green Khan out in one round two years ago and hasn’t really done much else of note since.
From the sounds of things, Khan doesn’t want to give Prescott either the big pay day or the attention, having stated in multiple interviews that he no longer considers Prescott a viable opponent. The WBA seem to have other ideas, and have Prescott currently ranked 12th in line for a shot at Khan’s title, despite having only beaten a couple of unranked journeymen since climbing up from lightweight last year.
With several fighters above him soon to be leaving the rankings for one reason or another and most of the rest already indisposed with bouts booked between now and April, Prescott might begin to not look like such a bad idea for Khan and team if terms with McCloskey can’t be agreed upon.
Whoever Khan ends up defending against in April, his main focus for the year will be on facing the winner of the upcoming bout between unbeaten champions Tim Bradley (WBO) and Devon Alexander (WBC), and becoming the first linear light welterweight champion since countryman Ricky Hatton several years ago.
Johnny Washington, Pitt: “I wouldn’t be surprised if he sits out until he can fight Bradley or Alexander, his team never like paying out much money to his opponents”
Jim Sellers, Manchester: “McCloskey isn’t a big name outside Ireland anyway, Prescott was on national TV here when he beat Khan, much bigger fight and after Maidana easy too”
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