Holy War: Floyd Balks at Accommodating Khan's Ramadan Fasting in Scheduling Next Fight
Undefeated welterweight Floyd Mayweather has announced a September 13 date for his next fight. The fight date, coming as it does six weeks after Ramadan, surely won't please one of his potential foes.
"Look, Ramadan only comes once a year and for religious purposes I respect that," Amir Khan explained after his victory over Luis Collazo earlier this month on the Mayweather-Maidana undercard. "I wouldn't do that [train during Ramadan]. It [a Mayweather fight] won't happen in September, no. Push it maybe to November and it can happen."
But Money Mayweather, who has taken to imitating Oscar De La Hoya's May/September fight schedule, won't accommodate Khan. And Khan won't follow the route of fellow Muslim Brit Prince Naseem Hamed, who trained at night during the Muslim holy month. Ramadan runs from June 28 to July 28 this year, giving Khan a final six weeks of training camp uninterrupted by fasting and religious obligations. But he's not about to take short cuts and make sacrifices going in to the fight of his life.
"Maybe my religious beliefs give Floyd an excuse not to fight me," he reasoned to the British press. "If he offers the fight in September, he knows it will get turned down. That way he could turn round and say Amir Khan did not want the fight. They're aware of all this, so why can't they wait a couple of months?"
Khan, a highly-marketable fighter who brings a British and Muslim audience to any superfight with Floyd, boasts wins over Marcos Maidana, Zab Judah, and Paulie Malignaggi. But he's also lost three times, including to unheralded Breidis Prescott by first round knockout. So, the notion that he would dictate the terms of a fight with the best pound-for-pound fighter of this boxing era strikes observers as a little far fetched. But it's clear that for Khan, a prizefighter who values his spiritual calling over the tug of materialism, setting up a training camp during Ramadan appears even more unrealistic. Just call him the anti-Money.
Breitbart Sports spoke last month to talented Mayweather mentee Adrien Broner, who took himself out of consideration for a fight with his friend. Despite interesting potential fights with the impressive up-and-comer Shawn Porter, Marcos Maidana a second time around, and, of course, Manny Pacquiao, Floyd Mayweather has made clear that this September fight is Khan's if he wants it. Mayweather handler Leonard Ellerbe tells ESPN's Dan Raphael, "If Amir Khan wants to flight Floyd Mayweather, we're going to fight on September 13."