Former two-time lightweight titlist Julio Diaz isn't afraid of showing his cards as he prepares for a 143-pound catchweight main event in Sheffield on April 27 against Amir Khan, saying he's training specifically to test Khan's infamous chin and score an early win:
"Honestly, this is the first time in my career I have trained to hurt a guy, with the specific intention of getting an early finish. I've been working on extra power."
Diaz, 33, surprised many by taking undefeated prospect Shawn Porter to a ten-round draw in a welterweight fight last December, part of the Khan-Molina undercard giving as good as he got and shaking Porter up on a few occasions. His previous bouts at welterweight -- against Pavel Miranda, Henry Aurad, and Hector Sanchez -- have all been stoppage wins.
Diaz (40-7-1, 29 KO) appears to still have some power. There's no doubt that he's going to be at a speed disadvantage against Khan, and that Amir is probably the more talented boxer. If Khan stays out of Diaz's wheelhouse, which appears to be the focus of his training with Virgil Hunter, then Diaz will probably have a long night. But if Julio can crack Amir, all bets could be off. Khan is tougher than he often gets credit for, but he's vulnerable, and everyone knows it.