IF it doesn’t happen soon, the mooted fight between Amir Khan and Kell Brook could end up being remembered the same way a once-mooted fight between Ricky Hatton and Junior Witter is remembered. There might be regret of the coulda, woulda, shoulda variety and there might be fingers pointed and blame placed on both sides.
Or, who knows, it might actually happen.
There is still time, of course. Brook fights again on December 8, against unheralded Michael Zerafa, while Khan is two fights into his latest comeback and seemingly ready to do the right thing and box Brook at some point next year.
It’s building, then, just as it has always been building, and Johnny Nelson, a former WBO cruiserweight champion and gym mate of Brook, has told Sky Sports it has to be “now or never”.
“It’s the biggest fight out there for both of them,” he said. “Khan has said he wanted his next fight to be against Manny Pacquiao, but that’s not happening.
“This fight can happen in March, but it’s all about them finally signing on the dotted line.
Nelson also revealed the two fighters, who both attended Tony Bellew’s fight against Oleksandr Usyk on Saturday, have shaken hands on the fight happening next year.
“I did speak to Kell about the Khan fight and he said, ‘Khan’s here, I’m going to put it on him,’” Nelson continued.
“I’m not quite sure what was said between them, but rumours are they shook on it.”
Khan and Brook have done a fair amount of shaking hands over the years. Let’s hope this latest one actually means something.
Roach will be on hand to deal with Fury’s cuts, should he accumulate any, while regular head coach, Ben Davison, will remain responsible for everything else.
On the face of it, it seems a natural enough set-up to most with any knowledge of these things, and Davison, rather than feel threatened by the presence of a legendary coach, is apparently relishing the opportunity to work alongside one of the best in his field.
“It was me who asked Freddie,” he said on social media. “Don’t look into it too much; I’m in charge, I’m Tyson’s trainer and what I say goes.
“But what better second could you get than Freddie? It’s as simple as that. And Ricky (Hatton) will be with us as well.”
Don’t look into it to much, I’m in charge, im tysons trainer, what I say goes. But What better second could you get than Freddie? Simple as that, Ricky will be with us also as will @asgartair
— Ben Davison (@BenDavison_) November 15, 2018
However the link-up has come about, there can be no doubting the addition of Roach’s wisdom and experience will stand ‘The Gypsy King’ in good stead on the night he looks to dethrone Wilder. After all, four eyes are better than two and – with Hatton there, too – six are better than four.
Better yet, when two of those eyes belong to a man who has trained the likes of Manny Pacquiao, Miguel Cotto and James Toney, and another two belong to a man who has shared a ring with Floyd Mayweather, Manny Pacquiao and Kostya Tszyu, you’re probably on the right track.
“It’s good to have Freddie’s experience around, giving us good pointers,” said Fury. “And he’s a very nice guy, so I thought I’d invite him to be part of the team and he can give us some good experience in the corner.
“Freddie’s his own man. Whatever he wants to do, he’ll do in the corner. I’m sure he will.
“It’s always good to have experience in the corner. It’s always good to have a wise hand in the corner, and it’s going to be to my advantage.”
Also appearing in Los Angeles on December 1 will be British light-heavyweight Anthony Yarde.
It was confirmed this afternoon that the WBO intercontinental and WBO European champion will have his 17th outing as a pro on the Deontay Wilder vs. Tyson Fury undercard, two years after Yarde was last seen on American soil.
Back in 2016, Yarde, 17-0 (16), ventured to the AT&T Stadium in Texas where he impressively knocked out Rayford Johnson in the very first round hours before Liam Smith defended his WBO world super-welterweight title against Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez. Yarde almost stole the show that night in Texas, and will no doubt look to do something similar in LA on December 1.
“I’ve experienced the fight scene in the USA before and it is something I cannot wait to sample it again,” said Yarde. “To be a part of such a huge occasion really will be something else and it will only inspire me to create nights like this for myself in the future.
“These are the events you can only dream of being a part of and I would like to thank Frank (Warren) and my manager Tunde Ajayi for making it possible. I am looking forward to showcasing my talents to the American public and this sort of exposure can only help me for when the time is right for me to be challenging for and winning world titles.”
Let’s hope this time Yarde gets an opponent to match his undoubted potential.