Following his first round destruction of Samuel Vargas on Saturday, unbeaten welterweight Conor Benn called for a “real test,” and specifically named Amir Khan, whose name had been on Benn’s mind in the build-up, too.
But while we do know Matchroom promoter Eddie Hearn and Khan have at least had some conversations about Khan’s boxing career lately, Amir doesn’t sound interested in fighting Benn:
Conor well done. Great kid, wish him the best.— Amir Khan (@amirkingkhan) April 11, 2021
At his age I was a world champ.
Maybe if he had some belts that fight would make sense but he’s got a long way to go yet
First things first, don’t count your chickens because of this Tweet. It’s useful enough to make note of it, but it’s also easy to see it as a way to sell an eventual fight. “AMIR KHAN THINKS HE’S TOO GOOD TO BE HERE! WILL CONOR BENN PROVE HIM WRONG?!?!?! SKY BOX OFFICE!”
But it also shouldn’t surprise anyone if the 34-year-old Khan (34-5, 21 KO) really does not want to fight the 24-year-old Benn (18-0, 12 KO). Khan has heavily diminished value at this point, but there could still be real money fights for him.
One would be a long-overdue but still marketable grudge match with Kell Brook. And just because he laid an egg in every way when he fought Terence Crawford in 2019, don’t count out Khan getting another title shot, either.
Benn is dangerous. Khan has never had the greatest chin, and Benn is young, fast, hits hard, and fights fearlessly. Amir hasn’t fought in two years, and doesn’t have a truly good win since 2015 at best.
Is Benn, then, worth the risk if Khan feels there’s still money out there with Brook or somebody? Business-wise and all that, you can see why he’d pass on this right now. Call it a duck, call it whatever, but he’s at the age and stage of career where he’s going to want to max out on any fight he takes.
It should also be said that if Khan doesn’t want it, Benn might look to prove a point himself and chase Kell Brook instead. Brook could be more open to the idea.
Or they could all wind up fighting Not Each Other.