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Amir Khan: A lucrative alternative for Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao

Lee Cleveland Updated
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Like him or not, boxer Amir Khan is easily one of the biggest names in boxing. And his staunch critics only contribute to his popularity.

Let's face it, controversy generates interest and Khan is second only to Floyd Mayweather in that area. Outside the ring, some think Amir is a gentleman while others insist he's arrogant. And inside it, some assert he's a skilled, elite-level craftsman while others say his skills are overrated and that he's "chinny."

From an international standpoint, he "may" be the third or fourth most recognized active fighter, behind Manny Pacquiao, Floyd Mayweather and, perhaps, Wladimir Klitschko.

Canelo Alvarez, Miguel Cotto and Juan Manuel Marquez are certainly more popular than the Pakistani Brit in North America, but what about Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Northern Africa?

Perhaps one could make a case for Marquez and Cotto in the Philippines? But what about in Pakistan, Jordan, China, India, Saudi Arabia and Egypt, non European nations whose citizens may be extremely interested in Khan's ring affairs.

While Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao should absolutely, positively fight each other next, Mayweather vs Khan, from a revenue standpoint, would rival Mayweather vs Canelo 2013, the highest grossing fight card ever.

Again, there's no excuse for Mayweather not fighting Manny but Khan is a lucrative alternative for both fighters, Floyd and Pacquiao.

"I'm not really interested in the Kell Brook fight," Khan said recently.

"I'm looking at the biggest names in boxing. Floyd Mayweather, Manny Pacquiao, I think that's where I belong. If the fight doesn't happen with Floyd then maybe Manny Pacquiao is another option."

"Mayweather says I'm not a big enough name but I am a bigger name than his opponents Maidana, Guerrero and Victor Ortiz put together."

When I attended Amir Khan's fight against Lamont Peterson three years ago in Washington, DC, there were just as many supporters for Amir as there were for Peterson, the hometown fighter.

Looking back, it should not have been a surprise. Khan has a mind-blowing 1.53 million followers on Twitter and 2.5 million on Facebook.

Fans who think a social media following is not, in many ways, attached to an individual or product's popularity and influence should really re-access their views of social media. And while many would argue Khan's high numbers are due to haters who troll his page on occasion, those haters are the same individuals who would drop everything to watch him fight.

If you're engaged enough in Khan's affairs to follow him in social media and leave comments every so often, he has succeeded in obtaining your 'interest' and you would more than likely watch him fight Mayweather or Pacquiao.

Let's hope Floyd and Manny fight next... But if they don't, Khan would certainly be a lucrative alternative.


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