|Photo by Chris Cozzone|
By Randy De La O
Amir Khan lost last night in his fight with the formerly unheralded Danny Garcia. He didn't just lose but was knocked for a loop by a left hook near the end of the third round and never fully recovered. He was knocked down two more times in the forth, overwhelmed by a charging and determined Danny Garcia. Referee Kenny Bayless stopped the fight at 2:28 of the fourth round, after asking Khan if he was alright. Khan responded positively and wanted to continue but the ref could see what we couldn't and called and end to the fight. Khan wanted to continue but it was a good stoppage. Sometimes a fighter needs to be saved from himself.
Garcia was the epitome of confidence coming into the fight but he was definitely the underdog. His anger and indignation at been thought of as an “sure win” for Khan paid off. I don't think anyone will underrate him again.
A word about Khan: Sometimes, or maybe all the time, the way a fighter loses says more about a man than all his victories combined. Khan showed a big heart in his fight with Garcia. When he was hurt he never looked for the easy way out. He took his licking like a man, at one point waving to Garcia to come and get him, still believing he could find a way to win. He was going to go down swinging. What more can we ask of any fighter? Fighters get caught and fighter sometimes lose, it's part of the sport. No shame in losing if you give your best. After the fight, in his post fight interview with Max Kellerman, he offered no half-hearted excuses. Khan showed some real class last night.
The fight was reminiscent of the Victor Garcia vs Josesito Lopez fight a couple of weeks ago, when Lopez was in the same underdog/underrated opponent position and went on to stop Ortiz by breaking his jaw in the ninth round. Josesito, a natural 140 pounder moved up in weight to fight Ortiz. Now he is being asked to move up one more weight class to fight Saul “Canelo” Alvarez. To my way of thinking, a more meaningful fight would be for Lopez to stay at 140 lbs and fight Danny Garcia. This would be a fight fans fight and a much more competitive fight. I don't expect that to happen but it would be the right fight to make.
Does Amir khan deserve a rematch? Despite the big loss I think he does, if only because Khan gave Garcia his big shot. I don't think he'll get it but it would be the right thing to do.
(Note to Canelo: Don't take the underdog for granted!)