RingTV.com: Do you have any thoughts on Pacquiao’s out-of-the ring issues, such as the tax problems?
AK: I stay out of that with him. Outside of boxing, we don’t really get involved. Because at the end of the day, that’s his problem, and I do my own stuff.
RingTV.com: Can you talk about your reunion with Ariza after having separated for the one fight against Paul McCloskey?
AK: We’ve spoken about that. Alex was hurt at that time, and in a way, he believed that he put me in that position where my body was in great shape. He plays a big part, just like Freddie plays a big part.
He was upset, and you know what? It’s business at the end of the day, and I like Alex Ariza and everything. It must have been hard for him to watch that because he’s thinking that I’m one of his boys.
Even outside of boxing, we’re boys. We’re friends. I speak to him on the phone, and everything. So he was upset because of that. He would have like to have been in my corner.
He would have enjoyed that win with me as he normally does. So, I think that he was more hurt than anything, really. That’s why we had to fix everything.
It was like, “look, we know how good he is at his job and everything,” so that’s why we got back with him. I know that he was hurt and everything about the McCloskey fight because he would have loved to have been there.
I mean, Alex was in the same trianing camp, and even then, it was hard to see him. I mean, I would say “hi” to him and everything, but it was hard for him to watch me train. He knows that I’m a good athlete and I like to train hard.
RingTV.com: What was it like having Peterson in London for the first day of the press conference considering the controversy surrounding the first fight?
AK: One thing about it, he didn’t seem confident on anything and in answering questions. Talking and stuff. You could see that the confidence wasn’t there. I mean, I know that Lamont knows that he lost the first time.
That’s why he was just sort of sitting there. He knows that he isn’t the champion. On paper, he is, but he knows that he didn’t win the fight. But he showed me respect, I showed him respect.
He came all the way to London, and I respect him for that. He took the rematch again after so much hard negotiation and everything. But that’s done. It’s time to get ready and to get into the ring and to fight now.
I’m ready to put on a great performance. The first fight was amazing, and I think that the second fight can be even better.
RingTV.com: What was it for you to go to Washington, D.C., two days later and to face the media there?
AK: It was great. They showed so much love. I’m walking the streets of Washington, and the people are saying, “you’re still the champ,” and, “we saw the fight and you’re still the champ.”
I mean, these are his own people saying that. That kind of gives me more confidence and makes me feel more relaxed and chilled. The people in Washington are nice.
It’s just that what happened to me was not fair. But we’ll hopefully settle the score and put things straight on May 19. I’ve got nothing against Lamont Peterson. It’s not his fault.
It’s the people who controlled the situation. It’s like if Lamont Peterson came ot the United Kingdom and I had an English judge and an English referee. That’s not going to be fair.
So I’m happy that we’re fighting in Las Vegas, where it’s going to be neutral, and we both fought there before. We’ve both had some good fights over there, so it’s going to be different.
RingTV.com: Are you going to knock out Peterson?
AK: I’m going to go in there and we’re going to fight hard. I made a few mistakes in there the last fight and we’re not going to make those same mistakes again.
We’re going to go in there and we’re going to fight hard and stick to a gameplan, whatever Freddie tells me. If Freddie tells me to fight him, I’ll fight him. If Freddie tells me to box him, I’ll box him.
It’s whatever Freddie says. Freddie is the man who is going to be in the corner and who is going to give me the game plan. We’re going to be ready for whatever Lamont brings to the table.
You’re going to see a totally different Amir Khan. We made a lot of mistakes in the last fight and we’re not going to make them again. We know that we were not 100 percent in the last fight.
There were a few little things. But I’m not going to tell you. But I’m going to be a different fighter. You know if I fought him like when I fought Zab Judah and when I fought Marcos Maidana, I don’t think Lamont Peterson would have been there.
But, there were a few little problems in the camp that I don’t want to talk about too much. But I’m ready for May 19 no matter what.
There were a few things in camp that I did differently, and they didn’t work for me. Let’s just see how it goes. Hopefully after this fight, we’ll move up to 147 and I can put on a lot more muscle and stuff.
I’m not going to be satisfied with just a win. I’m going to go in there for my fight and I’m going to try to deliver a fight that people really want to talk about.
People are expecting so much off of this next fight from Lamont, thinking that he’s going to be better than he was in the first one. But I made it a war last time.
I made that fight a war because I let it become a war. I’m not going to allow it to become a war this time. I’m going to do what I do best.
Forget the crowd. Forget proving the point that I can take a shot. Forget trying to knock him out. I’m going to go in there and I’m going to give him a clinic and a boxing lesson.
I’m going to have a clean, decent fight on May 19, and I’m just honored to have the chance and that the WBA ordered us to have this next rematch.
Trust me, you’re going to see a totally different fighter, and you’re going to say, ‘wow, we didn’t expect this from Amir.’
Photo by Delane Rouse, Hogan Photos, Golden Boy Promotions
Photos by Chris Hutty, Hogan Photos, Golden Boy Promotions
Lem Satterfield can be reached at email@example.com