by Frank Stea
For undefeated lightweight prospect Carlos Molina 17-0-1 (7KOs), accepting a fight against former two-time world champion and international boxing superstar Amir Khan was a no brainer. Having fought most of his career a few pounds south of the division that Khan once conquered, Molina knows the task ahead will be huge for his career.
The move up in weight and opportunity was too much to pass up on for the Rosemead, California native and Molina plans on making the best of this golden opportunity.
“It was crazy. I really didn’t expect that fight. Frank (Espinoza) called and he said ‘what do you think about a fight with Amir Khan?’ I said ‘hell yeah, let’s do it,” Molina told ATG Radio/World Boxing News on when he first heard about the potential match-up.
“He called me on Friday and said it’s set. I haven’t been able to sleep since. I’m anxious and I’m excited.” said an enthusiastic Molina.
Bolton fighter Khan has made some changes since being knocked out by Danny Garcia in July and recently announced that he is leaving hall of fame trainer Freddie Roach to work with the 2011 ‘Trainer of the Year’ Virgil Hunter to rebuild his career.
Molina touched on whether if Virgil Hunter will have him seeing a brand new Khan when they clash: “I’m just going to prepare 100%. I’ll expect a few changes. Once I get in there, do my work, and start landing a few shots, he’s just going to go back to the old Khan and fight the way he usually fights. I’m going to put it on him.”
“He has very good legs. I’d like to put pressure on him. He doesn’t like too much pressure so that’s going to be one of the keys and I’m just going to fight my fight. I think my hand speed is going to give him problems and I know he’s a quick fighter and I’m a quick fighter. It’s going to be a great fight.”
Molina hasn’t been much of a knockout specialist lately, having not scored a stoppage in his past eight fights and that seems to be a part of the selection process Team Khan adopted in picking Molina for Amir's next opponent, although Molina hopes they underestimate him on that statistic.
“They are looking at me as a smaller fighter. I don’t consider myself a knockout artist or anything like that, but in everyone of my fights I have hurt the guys I’ve fought. I like putting my punches together and if the knockout comes, let it come. I’m pretty accurate with my punches and a lot of those punches are going to land on his chin.”
Khan on the other hand hasn’t shown to have a chin of steel after losing two of his three career defeats by knockout, most recently against Garcia, who like Molina, is not known for being power puncher.
Molina hopes to make Khan relive the result of his last fight when they collide: “I’m going to test him right away,” he confirmed. “He is coming off that knockout loss and I’m gonna go in there and remind him about when he fought Garcia and try to bring that nightmare back on him.”
Frank Stea is co-presenter of ATG Radio as well as a head reporter at WBN, follow him on Twitter @FrankStea and @ATGRadio