clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Virgil Hunter: Size won't be that significant, Khan can hurt Canelo

Virgil Hunter talks about Amir Khan's preparation for moving up in weight to face Canelo Alvarez.

Trainer Virgil Hunter gives his assessment on the upcoming Canelo-Khan fight, saying that he believes that Canelo's size advantage won't be much of a factor in the fight. Check it out:

On the implications of Khan's training to move up in weight:

"It allows him to train without worrying about the diet so much. He does have to scale down to get to [1]55. But it does have its advantages. He can focus more on the training and resting, and he can fight at a natural weight that's for him without scaling down to a weight class. So from what I've seen his energy is much higher, his state of mind is much freer - he doesn't have to worry that last two weeks about the weight situation, which is something that all fighters making weight dread that period in time...so it has to be something positive for him."

On whether people are blowing the size difference between Khan and Canelo out of proportion:

"Well, rightfully so, they're logically thinking. Size can definitely become a factor in the fight if the person who has the size advantages knows how to use them. I think that Canelo is skilled in such a way that he hasn't really had to impose his size physically on his opponent, he's shown the skill set to simply be able to outbox them which is a great attribute to have. I think I mentioned that he'll have a longer career because of that, but in this fight I think Amir's big enough, I believe that any man that's 160, extremely fit, is enough for anybody in the vicinity...I don't think the size will be that significant.

On Amir Khan being able to hurt Canelo:

"Can Amir hurt Canelo? Yeah. He most definitely can hurt him."

If he's worried that Khan won't be able to make welterweight anymore after bulking up:

"Well he was struggling with welterweight the last two fights. Not struggling where it's bad, but where it was of concern where we had to daily monitor it. But I can see him campaigning at the 154lb division [moving forward].

On if he thinks Canelo will try to box with Khan:

"Well he can box so that possibility exists. We're ready for him to box, I believe he will. I've never really seen a fight that he's had where he really had to just like go get it and dog it out, so to speak, because there's not too many fights where he's been behind. But he's a boxer first and foremost, a counter puncher...that's who you are. If you have to go to something else, unless that's part of you too, it can be difficult, particularly on a night that has so much pressure attached to it.

On whether Amir Khan should be the favorite on paper:

"I don't think on paper because he's had some setbacks that you can't put up against Canelo's undefeated record. So you have to go with what the fighter has accomplished, Canelo's undefeated so you have to acknowledge that, you have to give him his props on it and anything away from that I feel like it would be personal, really. [Editor's Note: Canelo is not actually undefeated].

On if he thinks Khan can win a decision against Canelo, or if he's worried that the judges will score it for who lands the biggest punch:

"In that situation I think that Lara's fight might've influenced Cotto's fight. It's funny because when I turn the commentating off and look at the fight for what it is...I had Cotto slightly winning that fight because he blocked a majority of those punches. They might've came hard, but if they were coming that hard and landing how come he didn't go nowhere? You have to give [Cotto] credit for his ring generalship and his defense - that's all part of scoring...I can really see in my mind right now from watching that fight that he really only took 3-4 solid shots that were obvious.

"But a majority of those big punches, he blocked them. And he wasn't discouraged from being there...Cotto has the ability to not be in the pocket if he doesn't want to, he can move, so he chose to be there so it's obvious he was comfortable being where he was in that fight. And he landed enough - I might not hit you harder but I hit you. It's almost a slight to [Cotto] because he's known as a power puncher. But to justify your scoring saying 'well he didn't hurt Canelo' well, where did Cotto get hurt?

"Amir throws the kinds of punches that when they land, you see them land...So it's not gonna be any doubt his clean punches that land -- you're gonna see them. So I think that has a lot to do with the judges and how they choose to score the fight."