by David P. Greisman
Ronnie Shields (Khan): “I watched Lamont Peterson in so many fights because when he turned professional he fought for Prize Fight and I had a couple fighters with them, so I got to see a lot of Lamont. Man, he’s one of the best boxers I’ve ever seen in a very, very long time. The problem is he don’t have the punch to go with the boxing skills that he has. I just don’t see him keeping Amir off.
“Plus there’s the extra pressure of him fighting a big junior welterweight. Amir Khan is not a small guy; he’s a very, very big 140-pounder. I just think he might be a little too strong for Lamont at this stage. Lamont can out-box him for a few rounds, but after that, once Amir starts hitting him, I think the power might be a little too much for him. I’m going to say Amir Khan by late stoppage.”
Henry Ramirez (Khan): “I’m favoring Amir Khan. I do give Peterson a chance. They’re both pretty quick. They’re both well-skilled, but I just think Amir, with the difference in power, that should get him over the hump. I do expect it to be a pretty good fight. I would think Amir wins a decision. Peterson’s proved to be pretty durable, you know?”
Eddie Mustafa Muhammad (undecided): “Amir Khan is a fantastic fighter. But Peterson, he’s at home and that’s going to add a lot of fuel to the fire. This fight is a pick’em fight to me. I don’t see it as an overwhelming success for Amir Khan. Amir Khan is a great fighter. He has a great trainer in Freddie Roach. He’s going to be a force to be reckoned with.
“I’m not leaning one way or the other on this fight. To me it’s a pick’em fight. The last fight Peterson had, I was there, I watched him fight in Vegas. He fought a great fight. He was there, and then he wasn’t there. He threw the correct punches, and then he eventually stopped the guy. He’s learned a lot. But again, what in my opinion may pull him through is the home-court advantage.”
Kevin Cunningham (Khan): I think this is going to be a better fight than most people think — if Lamont steps up and fights up to the capabilities and fights up to his talent that I know he has. I’ve been knowing this kid since he was 10, 11 years old in the amateurs and watched him for years.
“He’s extremely talented, and I think he’s being underestimated. I think this fight is going to be really interesting. It’s going to be a close fight, more competitive than people think. You’ve got Khan who’s got good hand speed, tall, rangy, good in-and-out foot movement. That could cause problems for Lamont.
“I think Lamont is going to make it a real close, interesting fight, but I think I’m going to have to give the nod to Khan. I think Khan will box and move and run around the ring, jump in and throw combinations, and run around the ring, and he’ll get the 12-round decision.”
John Scully (Khan): “I think that’s a good fight. I think Lamont Peterson is kind of an underrated kid. I wouldn’t say he’s a superstar or super famous, but he’s got very good skills. He had a great amateur career. He’s one of the best kids in the country. But with that said, I think Amir Khan has proven to be better than a lot of people want to give him credit for.
“His last few fights I think he stepped up. I think he’s going to win a decision. He’s going to be a little too sharp with the jab. When he fought Judah, I think he showed a lot more and he gained a lot of respect and showed he’s pretty versatile. Working with Freddie, he’s upped his game. I think it’s his time.”
David P. Greisman is a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America. Follow David on Twitter at twitter.com/fightingwords2 or on Facebook at facebook.com/fightingwordsboxing, or send questions and comments to [email protected]