• Boxing

Khan slams his light-welterweight rivals

ESPN staff
May 14, 2010
Amir Khan takes on Paulie Malignaggi on May 15 © Getty Images
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WBA light-welterweight champion Amir Khan has launched an attack on his rivals in the division, going so far as to say that Marcos Maidana would "have his head taken off" by a "good boxer".

The big-hitting Maidana was made the mandatory challenger for Khan's belt in January, but there have been suggestions that the Brit will look to avoid taking the fight.

However, after insisting that he intends to eventually face the winner of Maidana's clash with WBO king Timothy Bradley, Khan moved to quash those rumours by claiming that the Argentinean would be an ideal opponent for him.

"Maidana is a good fight as watching his last fight, he's very open," Khan said to the Manchester Evening News. "A good boxer would take his head off and give him a boxing lesson."

Khan went on to aim verbal blows at WBC and IBF champion Devon Alexander, hinting that the unbeaten 23-year-old is naïve in the ring.

"If you look at Devon Alexander, you can tell he's still inexperienced and he makes a lot of mistakes," he said. "Freddie [Roach, Khan's trainer] says the same, he always says that would be a good fight for me.

"Freddie feels very confident in this division that I can take anyone on. And I think by the end of this year I can be No. 1 in this division and beating the likes of Timothy Bradley and the big names.

"After beating guys like Bradley you go to a level where you are fighting guys like Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather and Shane Mosley, so it can happen quick. By the end of the year I'll be at my peak."

Khan takes on Paulie Malignaggi, who lost to Ricky Hatton in 2008, in his first fight on American soil on May 15. Ahead of the bout, Malignaggi has ramped up the war of words by casting doubts over both Khan's chin and the calibre of opponent he has faced to date.

"I think Amir, for a big part of his career, was taking a lot of things for granted," Malignaggi is quoted as saying in the Metro. "He was getting knocked down by really bum fighters but one thing that it does show you is that if you hit a man on the chin, he may feel it."

Malignaggi was stopped in the 11th round by Hatton and a similar win for Khan is 25/1 with Stan JamesClick here to open an account and receive a £25 free bet

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