Former world champion Amir Khan says boxers who make big money need help dealing with their success.
Khan made the statement in a recent interview with Gary Neville, where he also discussed his charity work and other topics.
One of the UK’s most famous boxers in the 2000s, Khan was always in the line of fire outside the ring.
The rise of Amir Khan
Winning big money for world title fights, television and endorsement deals, the Bolton man often went off the rails before and after he met his wife, Faryal.
The 35-year-old boxer would be the first to admit that he made many mistakes, one of which was accusing fellow boxer Anthony Joshua of sleeping with the New Yorker.
His career peaked when he defeated the United States, winning bouts against Zab Judah and Marcos Maidana. The latter earned Khan the WBN Fighter of the Year trophy in 2010.
Big success came from a silver medal at the 2004 Olympics. Khan chose to represent Great Britain over Pakistan after being born in England.
Just a teenager, Khan was known as a nice guy and squeaky clean in his early years of boxing.
However, with all eyes in the UK on him for his achievements as the country’s only boxer at the Athens Olympics, trouble soon set in once the money arrived.
“I have never seen a psychologist, neither during my boxing career nor now,” Khan explained to The Overlap.
That’s one thing about boxing. Boxers make a lot of money, but we don’t have the system that footballers have.
“We don’t have psychologists. We don’t have nutritionists, and we don’t have anything.”
boxers go crazy
He continued: “In a boxing gym, they should have one. They don’t have that, that’s why a lot of wrestlers go crazy.
“After their race, they are left alone, nobody talks about them. With a lot of these other fighters who didn’t really have such a big name, people forget about them, they go crazy.
“They have had money. Then they take their money. When you’re in a rut your whole life. So you leave that routine, you think, ‘what do I have to do?’
“This is when you need mental help, someone to talk to you. You need someone to tell you how to move forward, someone to help you on the business side as well.
“There is no one to help you in boxing, you are alone.”
Speaking of his charity work, Khan uses that approach of knowing he helps others to keep him in a healthy state of mind.
“I opened the Amir Khan Academy about ten years ago because I wanted to give something back to the community.
“I wanted to give back for what boxing did for me. It has opened many doors. It has given me a good life.
“I’ve done this for a lot of kids, and you won’t believe it, but Tyson Fury also started his boxing career here, and his cousin did.
“So they used to train here, in our gym, because we also had fans training there. Now we have Joe Gallagher, Paul Smith and Stephen Smith.
“So, everyone trains here. It’s amazing, I mean, what the gym has done for us: give something back to Bolton. That’s what he wanted to do.”
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