FROM SHOWTIME BOXING ANALYST STEVE FARHOOD
On Saturday, Dec. 13 welterweight contenders and former world titlists Amir Khan and Devon Alexander will clash in a critical contest in Las Vegas on SHOWTIME.
Khan is from Bolton, England, which doesn’t have much in common with Alexander’s hometown of St. Louis.
The American Revolution aside, there have been dozens of fascinating England-USA matchups over the years. A distinctive baker’s dozen that I remember:
Danny Garcia KO 4 Amir Khan (2012): Remember how comprehensively Khan was outboxing Garcia? Three knockdowns later, Khan was comprehensively stopped.
Lennox Lewis KO 8 Mike Tyson (2002): A brawl at the introductory press conference … two ring announcers … and a line of security guards separating the fighters upon their ring entrances. I watched it all at 5 a.m. in Glasgow after working a ShoBox: The New Generation show.
Matthew Saad Muhammad W 15 John Conteh I (1979): Former titlist Conteh fights with one hand and extends light heavy champ Saad in one of the first big fights in casino-era Atlantic City.
Naseem Hamed KO 4 Kevin Kelley (1997): I lost count of the knockdowns by round three, probably because I was still numb from Hamed’s legendary ring walk. One of the greatest fights in Madison Square Garden’s incredible history.
Sugar Ray Leonard KO 4 Dave Boy Green (1980): Thirty-four years later, still one of the most brutal kayos I’ve seen live. Check out Ray’s frightening left hook on YouTube.
Carl Froch KO 12 Jermain Taylor (2009): High drama in the Connecticut woods: Fourteen seconds left at the time of the kayo. Fourteen seconds–with Taylor ahead on two of the three cards!
Floyd Mayweather KO 10 Ricky Hatton (2007): Hatton, 43-0 going in, is dropped by a memorable Money hook. Best of the best: In four consecutive fights, Mayweather defeated Oscar De La Hoya, Hatton, Juan Manuel Marquez, and Shane Mosley.
Lloyd Honeyghan KO 6 Donald Curry (1986): How big an upset? At the time, the unbeaten Curry was ranked first in the pound-for-pound listings. This fight is second only to Randy Turpin-Sugar Ray Robinson in terms of biggest England-USA upset.
Marvin Hagler KO 3 Alan Minter (1980): Hagler celebrates winning the world middleweight title the way he always dreamed–by dodging flying glass bottles and fleeing the ring during a nasty post-fight riot in London.
Muhammad Ali KO 6 Henry Cooper (1966): Forty-six thousand fans at Arsenal Football Stadium watch chronic bleeder Cooper shed enough red for Ali to say, “Blood scares me. I was more desperate than anyone else when I saw Cooper bleeding so badly.”
Nigel Benn KO 1 Iran Barkley (1990): Three knockdowns buy Benn a lot of legitimacy on this side of the pond. Back in those days, nobody did that to “The Blade.”
Kell Brook W 12 Shawn Porter (2014): Stranger than truth: British judge Dave Parris scored the bout even, while the two American judges saw Brook winning fairly comfortably.
Timothy Bradley W 12 Junior Witter (2008): Bradley wins a version of the 140-pound title on ShoBox, with a right-hand knockdown in round six proving the difference on the cards.