Amir Khan vs. Neeraj Goyat
|Date & Time||Friday July 12, 2019, 7:00 AM (EDT)|
King Abdullah Sports City
Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
The Line: Khan -2138 / Goyat +1382 -- Over/Under:
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Amir Khan and Neeraj Goyat fight Friday at the King Abdullah Sports City.
Amir Khan enters this fight with a 33-5 record that includes 20 knockouts. Khan has won seven of his last nine fights and is coming off an April loss to Terence Crawford. Khan was outclassed in his last bout, as he showed poor footwork, was knocked down in the first round and was often sloppy in his exchanges. Khan had very few bright spots in the fight and then quit in the sixth round after being hit below the belt. After a big payday already secured and getting beat up on, Khan took the easy way out and it’s fair to question his passion for the sport at this stage of his career. Khan is 32 years old, stands at 5’8”, has a 71-inch reach and an orthodox stance. Khan is most known for his hand speed and high work rate, as he pressures his opponent with combinations and usually controls the pace of the fight. Khan doesn’t have game changing power in his hands, but his aggressiveness allows him to win on the scorecards and often win comfortably if his opponent doesn’t match his energy. The two downfalls in Khan remain his questionable chin and shaky defense. Khan has been knocked out four times in five career losses and his aggressive, sometimes wild style results in careless openings for his opponent to counter. And after his last bout, you now have to question just what the motivation is for Khan at this point, as pulling out immediately rubs a lot of people the wrong way. This will be Khan’s first career fight in Saudi Arabia.
Neeraj Goyat enters this fight with a 11-3-2 record that includes two knockouts. Goyat has won five of his last six fights and is coming off an April win over Carlos Lopez Marmolejo. Goyat gets easily the biggest fight of his career, as he’s somebody who has beaten up on inexperienced and poor quality fighters. However, Goyat did beat Xu Can in a four round bout, the current WBA (Regular) Featherweight champion, back in 2014 when both of these guys were just getting their careers off the ground. Other than that, there’s a lot of blah of Goyat’s resume. Goyat is 27 years old, stands at 5’7” and has an orthodox stance. Goyat is a former MMA fighter who won both of his fights before switching to boxing full time, and he’s the first Indian to break into the WBC rankings. Goyat has good head movement and slips punches well, but it’s careful to take his highlights with a grain of salt given who he’s fighting. Goyat has little to no pop on his punches and is very raw with how he throws his hands overall. Goyat is vey sloppy with his punching accuracy and almost has a slapping technique to his delivery. While there’s clearly tools and potential to work with, Goyat has a lot of showing and proving to do before the boxing community can take him seriously. This will be Goyat’s first career fight in Saudi Arabia.
Based off talent and experience alone, Khan should win this fight rather easily. The problem is Khan hasn’t looked great these past couple of years and with the way he took a nosedive in his last fight and welcomed the first out that was given to him, I’m not sure anything will surprise us at this point. Khan is getting a handsome paycheck for this fight and there’s nothing stopping him from throwing in the towel the second he’s not feeling it. I’m not a big believer in Khan at the moment. With that said, Goyat struggles to throw a punch properly and has zero power that’s going to scare Khan. If Khan gives a care in the world, he wins this fight easily and can probably pick the round to stop his opponent. That’s a big if at this point.
Khan should win this fight by stoppage, but I’d stay far away from it based on the unpredictability and what looks like a lack of motivation from the former champion.