Amir Khan must think long and hard about his next move after a shocking and brutal defeat by Danny Garcia even left him facing suggestions he should retire.
Talk of a rematch seemed fanciful after watching the Bolton fighter get destroyed by American Garcia at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas.
Khan was admittedly the better man in the WBA/WBC light-welterweight unification bout before being sent crashing to the canvas in round three. It all unravelled for him from there as Garcia capitalised by flooring him twice more before referee Kenny Bayless stopped it in the fourth.
It was Khan’s second successive defeat following last December’s loss against Lamont Peterson and lost his WBA belt in the process.
Question marks over Khan’s punch resistance will return and it is doubtful whether it would be a good idea to fight Garcia again after the younger man took him apart so chillingly. Yet Khan’s team claim to want another chance, although Garcia’s firebrand father and trainer Angel rubbished such talk.
“Amir said he will be back and hopefully Danny Garcia will come to England and maybe fight us over there,” said trainer Freddie Roach on Khan’s behalf after the fighter was taken straight to hospital for precautionary scans.
“We were fighting a good fight and all of a sudden, one punch changed it and in boxing you never know. I guess I have to also congratulate Mr (Angel) Garcia also.”
The new unified champion seemed open to the idea andsaid: “It’s up to my team, but he gave me the opportunity (so) I’ll give him the opportunity.”
However, his outspoken father cut his son off, saying: “Why give him a rematch? He disrespected Danny when he took him as an opponent. He thought he was a pushover. We’re not giving him a rematch.”
All Khan’s three defeats have come against rank underdogs. As a red-hot prospect in 2008 he was blitzed by unfancied Breidis Prescott and, after rebuilding brilliantly, he was beaten by Peterson last year in a poor performance, regardless of the American’s win being tarnished by illegal testosterone use.
He admitted before being taken to hospital that he was guilty of taking his latest opponent lightly: “After watching the replays I thought I was coming in with my hands down and Danny took advantage.”
Khan’s fellow British superstar Carl Froch has suggested the Englishman should consider calling it quits despite being just 25 years old.
“I would retire if that happened to me,” he told Radio 5 Live’s Sportsweek programme.