It looks like Amir Khan vs Kell Brook will go down in history as one of those grudge fights that should have happened but never did.
That's because Khan is expected to confirm a clash against WBO welterweight champion Terence Crawford from April 20 in a press conference later today.
Following his signing of Khan last year, Eddie Hearn was looking to broker a bout with long-term domestic rival Brook.
And despite trying his hardest, Hearn was unable to sway Khan away from another world title shot.
Crawford has won titles in three weight divisions, and as Khan's promoter Hearn was quick to point out, will actually represent a much tougher challenge.
“I can’t tell you I’m over the moon, because I wanted Amir Khan to fight Kell Brook," Hearn told Sky Sports.
“We talked about money in the last conversation. There was more money to fight Kell Brook than there was to fight Terence Crawford. You also can’t criticise Amir, because he’s fighting pound-for-pound one of the top fighters in world boxing and it’s a very tough fight.
“It’s a tougher fight than Kell Brook, so you can’t accuse him of ducking, but unfortunately if you ask people watching or at home who they would prefer to see him fight, of course the fight is Kell Brook.”
After finishing the year with a points win over Michael Zerafa, Brook will now have to explore other possible avenues having - at least publically - been willing to meet all of Khan's demands.
Hearn added: “I always said that it was now or never. I stand by that.
“Listen, if he produces a good performance and Kell Brook continues to win. Amir could win against Terence Crawford.”
Hearn has not yet ruled out a Brook vs. Khan in the future, but concedes he has little hope of this being realised.
“He’s massively up against it, but right now, that fight doesn’t look good, and I think it’s a shame, because I’ve wanted it for five or six years. When we brought Amir to the Matchroom and Sky stable, that was where we were all moving.
“An opportunity came up for him to fight for the world title. In one respect, you have to take your hat off to him, in the other respect you have to say, we didn’t really get the one we wanted, did we?"
“Press conference will be tomorrow and then one in New York on Thursday, and it’s a good fight. He’s trying to be a world champion again. In many aspects, you have to congratulate him and admire him. Unfortunately I feel like he hasn’t given the British public the fight that we really wanted to see.”
Hearn’s focus on the purse is perhaps misplaced. At least as far as Khan is concerned, who has always put legacy first.
And rather than focusing on what he might bank and an easier domestic clash for no title, is instead challenging one of the best pound-for-pound fighters in the world.
For seeking to become three-time world champion Khan might reasonably have expected support, but on the contrary, has been heavily criticised in both social media and print.
Instead of jumping on this less than admirable bandwagon, Hearn should now perhaps just get behind his fighter.News Now - Sport News