Former junior-welterweight boxing champion Amir Khan was deprived of a shot at redemption after his rematch with Lamont Peterson, scheduled for last week, was cancelled after Peterson tested positive for synthetic steroids. Now Khan faces a new opponent, as Khan and his promoters, Golden Boy Promotions, have agreed to fight new World Boxing Council junior-welterweight champion Danny â€œSwiftâ€ Garcia (23-0, 14 Knockouts) at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California. The fight will take place on July 14th.
â€œI feel like this is just how itâ€™s supposed to be: the best versus the best, both of us in our prime and giving the fans a great fight,â€ Garcia said as quoted by Mail Online. â€œIâ€™m just happy. I feel I have what it takes to beat this guy. Iâ€™ve watched Khan a lot. Heâ€™s a good fighter, but I donâ€™t think heâ€™s what people say he is, getting all this credit. I feel he will leave himself open for some big shots and weâ€™ll see if he can take them. Iâ€™m going to hit him with stuff he wonâ€™t see. I canâ€™t wait.â€
Neither can Khan, who was naturally bitterly disappointed at not being able to fight last weekend. Khan plans to take out his frustration on the unbeaten Garcia, but he has been nothing but respectful to â€œSwiftâ€ via his Twitter page: â€œMay the best man win on July 14th. Khan vs. Garcia,â€ Khan wrote.
Garcia, from the tough streets of Philly, arrived on the world stage back in March, when he ripped the WBC crown from an ageing but still dangerous and proud Erik Morales. Now 23-0(14), the 24-year-old won by a wide margin on the cards yet he had to take some lumps. Suffering a busted nose, Garcia battled through the pain and the blood to win his biggest fight to date.
The Pakistani-Brit Khan has 26 wins, with 18 knockouts, to only two losses. But one of those losses was to Peterson in December of last year. Golden Boy is now reportedly working on getting the sanctioning bodies to strip Peterson of his World Boxing Association (WBA) and International Boxing Federation (IBF) belts, and ideally handing them back to Khan.
In the meantime, Khan and Golden Boy have found their opponent. Khan trains at Hollywoodâ€™s Wild Card Boxing Club, thus spurring a desire to fight in Southern California. Khan at least seems to be in control of his fate at this time, as opposed to the limbo that he was in after his loss to Peterson. Hopefully he can take advantage of this chance at a proverbial â€œdo-over.â€