MANILA, Philippines – Respected boxing trainer Naazim Richardson believes former world champion Amir “King” Khan of Britain should leave the light-welterweight division if he wants to resurrect his boxing career.
Khan has lost two consecutive bouts at light-welterweight: a disputed decision against Lamont Peterson last December and a fourth round stoppage against Danny Garcia last July.
Richardson, who has trained former world champions Shane Mosley and Bernard Hopkins, told Fight Hype that Khan should stop competing at the division.
“I don’t think he should compete at 140-pounds anymore. They have to get him in a comfortable place,” Richardson said.
Khan’s recent losses have been attributed to his underdeveloped defensive skills but Richardson said this was not the only reason.
“Not only do I think it’s about defense with Amir, but a lot of it has to do with who he is fighting,” Richardson said.
“When you are fighting a guy that walks around at (Lucian) Bute’s size and they can sweat down to 140, you get hit with a clean shot from a guy like that and that has nothing to do with defense a lot of times,” he added.
“Danny Garcia wins fights at the scale and as long as he can make 140-pounds, he’s gonna be a problem for a lot of guys.”
Richardson said Khan should fight at a comfortable weight. “When you look at his shoulders and things of that nature, he doesn’t have the easiest cut to 140,” he said.
Khan’s consecutive losses have prompted the boxer to search for a new trainer to replace Hall-of-Famer Freddie Roach. Richardson was among the trainers mentioned as possible replacements.
Richardson was non-committal about the issue, only saying: “Amir has to pick someone who is gonna get him comfortable in his own skin.”