Roach sees the next Pacquiao in British champion Khan

By Larry Fine

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Fight trainer extraordinaire Freddie Roach, who helped Manny Pacquiao scale the heights to become hailed as boxing's best, said he gets a sense of deja vu working with Briton Amir Khan.

"Amir was 21 years old when he came to me -- a lot of speed, a lot of potential, good work ethic. They train hard together.

"I see a lot of Manny in him. They're very similar in a lot of aspects."

Asked about the great intangible, heart, Roach said: "One hundred percent, yes."

The bout will be the 23-year-old Khan's first outside of Britain.

Roach said he respected the quick-footed, light-hitting former champion Malignaggi but was confident about the result.

The 29-year-old Malignaggi has a 27-3 record but only five knockouts.

"We're going to go out aggressive and make the fight happen. We've got a good game plan, I think," Roach said.

"I like Paulie and Paulie has a chance.

"The biggest thing is cut the ring off and not let Paulie move on him, because Paulie can move and run when he wants to. And that's what he's going to do in this fight, because my guy is too big and strong for him and we got to cut the ring off and set traps.

"That's the most important thing, controlling the ring."

Khan, who has finished off 16 opponents inside the distance in compiling a 22-1 record, stopped Dmitriy Salita in the first round of his last bout.

"Amir is very aggressive, very strong and he's punching better than ever," said Roach. "I don't think the fight will go three rounds."

(Editing by Steve Ginsburg)