Amir's toy story! Fans asked to exchange gifts in return for tickets to Khan fight in LA
13:22 GMT, 11 December 2012
Fight fans have been offered free tickets to watch Amir Khan's return the ring in Los Angeles this Saturday… in exchange for an unwrapped toy.
Ticket sales have reportedly been slow for the former world light-welterweight champion's comeback clash against Carlos Molina.
But Khan's American Golden Boy promoters want to make a full house at the 17,000 LA Memorial Sports Arena this weekend and have engineered a scheme that will see fans handed tickets – worth as much as 100 – to the the fight in exchange for a unopened toy priced as little as 15.
Golden Boy chief Oscar De La Hoya has come up with the giveaway idea to give to deprived families in time for Christmas.
You've got a friend in me: Fight fans are being encouraged to trade toys – like the ones from the film Toy Story (below) – for tickets to Khan's fight against Molina
'I am looking forward to distributing the toys to those families who need them most,' said De La Hoya, speaking to The Sun.
Khan, meanwhile, has vowed to reinvent himself as 'a totally different fighter' when he aims to bounce back from two successive defeats.
A year ago the Bolton fighter controversially lost his WBA title to Lamont Peterson, only to be subsequently reinstated when it emerged the American had been using synthetic testosterone.
However, he lost his next fight too when Danny Garcia knocked him silly in a fourth-round stoppage win in Las Vegas in July.
The Garcia defeat brought about much soul-searching before the Englishman made the tough decision to leave renowned trainer Freddie Roach and join forces with another Californian, Virgil Hunter.
Khan's questionable punch resistance and over-zealous attacking instincts point towards the need for a change in approach and the fighter himself admits there has been plenty to work on under Hunter, who boasts a stellar reputation having guided Andre Ward to pound-for-pound recognition.
'Training with Virgil's been going really well,' the 26-year-old said ahead of his scrap with undefeated Californian Molina.
Return: Khan is looking to bounce back following his defeat by Danny Garcia in July
'The gym is quiet, it's chilled, you can think about what you're doing.
'For example when I'm sitting in the gym, or warming up, I can think things through about what I want to do in the session or the sparring. I can think things through, whereas previous gyms I've trained at have been very busy with lots of people there.
'Sometimes it's a distraction because you can't really focus on what you need to focus on.
'Virgil is a great trainer. He breaks everything down and every day he reminds me what I need to do, what I need to work on and what mistakes I make which need improving on.'
Khan was in control against Garcia before leaving himself exposed and being taken apart by the Philadelphian's power shots. The 2004 Olympic silver medalist insists he will use that experience, combined with Hunter's input, to right those wrongs.
Change of plans: Khan (R) has prepared for his upcoming fight against Molina with new trainer, Virgil Hunter
'We've sat down and watched the Garcia fight together and we've been working on some new stuff from that, including being more patient and waiting for the right shots at the right time and not over-committing myself,' he said.
'When I watch the Garcia fight, I can see that I'm like a totally different fighter. Virgil said to me when we watched it again “now you tell me what you're doing wrong in the fight and what you'd do differently now” and so I told him.
'It shows that the sparring I've been doing and the training I'm getting is helping me. I'm a better fighter by far because I would not fight Garcia the way I did. I've changed my fighting style a lot and proves I'm doing something right.
'We're ready for this guy.'