Amir Khan vs Samuel Vargas: comeback continues on Live Stream Online Saturday night when he takes on Free Samuel Vargas in Birmingham, England, in a non-title welterweight match U.S. PPV Boxing fans will have a place to easily and legally watch Amir Khan vs Samuel Vargas on Saturday
Whenever Amir Khan flexes his right hand he sees multiple scars from an operation two years ago in which part of his hip bone was grafted into his broken fist. But, as he prepares to face Samuel Vargas in Birmingham on Saturday night, he says there is no permanent mental damage from the three brutal stoppages on his record – and that, at 31, he still has plenty left in the tank.
“I’ve trained harder than ever before,” says Khan after a punishing first full camp with his trainer, Joe Goossen. “I feel better now than when I was 25. And I hit a lot harder. This is a fight that will tell me what I have left, how far I can go and whether I can go to the next level to the fights like Manny Pacquiao and Kell Brook. But I know I’ve got a lot left in me. If I didn’t I’d walk away.
“Remember Pacquiao was at his peak when he was 31, 32. He was knocking out guys like Miguel Cotto and Antonio Margarito. I remember training and sparring with him then, and he was at his strongest. I’m coming back because I know I can achieve more in the sport before I call it a day. I’m still young, I still feel young.”
Khan believes Vargas is “nowhere near my level” and the evidence of the naked eye and their respective records suggests he is right.
Vargas, a 29-year-old Canadian-Colombian, has 29 victories and only three defeats from 34 fights. However, whenever he has stepped into the highest class, against fighters such as Errol Spence and Danny Garcia, he has been stopped. Khan should win – and comfortably.
He knows there are plenty of doubters – including Vargas, who says Khan is “damaged” from being knocked out by Canelo Álvarez when he unwisely moved up to light-middleweight to fight the Mexican in 2016.
“It’s all mind games,” Khan says. “Vargas has been knocked out himself, he’s been stopped himself. He shouldn’t be in the same ring as me. I need this type of fight to get me going again because my last fight [a one-round stoppage of Phil Lo Greco] was so short and I have had such a long time out of the ring with the hand injury.”
Khan points out he has never lost as a welterweight. And crucially, he seems to have finally realised he does not have to necessarily slug it out every time he is put under pressure – which has been sometimes been his undoing. “Having big balls can get you into trouble,” he says. “You shouldn’t be too happy to have them because they can get you in to trouble.”
Much of Khan’s renewed confidence comes from working with Goossen, an eloquent and flamboyant trainer with several world champions on his CV, including Joel Casamayor, Diego Corrales and Michael Nunn.
The 65-year-old Goossen says Khan is “undoubtedly” the quickest fighter he has ever worked with – “he’s left me going ‘wow’ a few times and that is not easy to do after all these jaded years,”– but believes he has significantly improved Khan’s fitness and made his charge harder to hit.
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“Amir is a tremendous athlete,” he says. “But there is a certain point when you get to the top level, some things can get exposed and be exploited. You have to have some defensive subtleties; it’s what keeps you in the game.”
The promoter Eddie Hearn said that how Khan performs against Vargas will determine whether he fights again in December or next year, as well as the identity of his opponent.
Hearn has no doubts Khan can become a world champion again. “A fight with Pacquiao is probably more international than Brook, while Khan versus Brook shuts the whole country down,” he says. “Amir is in the lucky position where it is up to him.”
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