- Dan Rafael, ESPN Senior Writer
- 0 Shares
Former junior welterweight titlist Amir Khan has a new trainer and an opponent for his comeback fight.
England's Khan announced Saturday that he has hired reigning Boxing Writers Association of America trainer of the year Virgil Hunter to take charge of his corner.
Khan will face prospect Carlos Molina in his next fight on a date to be determined at a venue in the United States.
Promoter Golden Boy was in discussions with both HBO (whose deal with Khan recently ended) and Showtime to buy the fight, but it made a deal Saturday with Showtime. The fight will take place on a date to be determined in December.
On July 14, Khan was knocked out by Danny Garcia in a title unification fight in a big upset in Las Vegas.
Three weeks ago Khan fired five-time BWAA trainer of the year Freddie Roach after working with him for the past four years.
Khan and Hunter, whose top fighter is super middleweight champion Andre Ward, had met earlier in September in New York to work out together and get to know each other as Khan contemplated making a change to his corner.
"I'm really pleased that Virgil Hunter is to become my new trainer," Khan said. "Everyone in boxing knows about his skills and the success he has enjoyed over the last few years. I'm looking forward to the start of my training camp and working on some new things with him. With Virgil in my corner, I know that I can get back to the very top of the light welterweight division."
Khan (26-3, 18 KOs), 25, said he will train for the Molina fight at Hunter's gym in Hayward, Calif., outside of Oakland.
"Amir is an extremely talented fighter and I'm very happy to become his new trainer," Hunter said. "I've seen a lot of him and he has many attributes such as his speed and heart. There are certain small aspects of his game that I'm intending to work on in order to help him fulfill his enormous potential."
Molina (18-0-1, 7 KOs), 26, of Rosemead, Calif., who is also promoted by Golden Boy, turned pro in 2007, and will be moving up in weight from lightweight to junior welterweight for the fight with Khan. Facing Khan will be a big step up in the level of competition that Molina has faced.
He fits the bill for Khan because he is not a big puncher and he is a smaller man. Khan's biggest issues have been with his ability to take a power punch as he has been knocked out by good punchers in two of his losses, to Garcia and Breidis Prescott.
Molina has won three fights in a row since the lone blemish on his record, an eight-round draw with Juan Montiel in August 2011 in Las Vegas.
"Molina is a good fighter who has yet to taste defeat, so I know that he will be very dangerous," Khan said. "He's a tricky fighter who possess a lot of natural speed. I always want to face hungry young fighters and in Molina I'm up against a guy who has ambitions of world title success."