Last fall, then-welterweight titleholder Devon Alexander agreed to a Dec. 7 defense against former unified junior welterweight titleholder Amir Khan, but Khan abruptly pulled out of the talks after they were far down the road because he thought he had the inside track for a bigger fight against pound-for-pound king Floyd Mayweather Jr. in May and he wasn't about to risk anything.
As it turned out, Khan did not get the fight with Mayweather, instead settling for a slot on his undercard, where he outpointed former titlist Luis Collazo while Mayweather eked out a win against Marcos Maidana. Alexander, meanwhile, did fight Dec. 7, losing a decision and his title to Shawn Porter before rebounding to outpoint Jesus Soto Karass on June 21.
And now, after all that, Alexander and Khan are back where they were a year ago: On the verge of fighting each other.
Golden Boy Promotions president Oscar De La Hoya said the fighters, both represented by adviser Al Haymon, have agreed to the match and the deal is in the process of being finalized as the main event of a Dec. 13 tripleheader on Showtime in Las Vegas.
"There are just little details that we are finishing but Khan and Alexander are going to fight," De La Hoya told ESPN.com on Monday.
The fight is slated to take place at Mandalay Bay, although there is a chance that casino officials will move the card to its sister property MGM Grand.
"Amir Khan looked good against my boy Collazo, but I have a feeling he wants to make a statement against Alexander, and Alexander is coming off a good win in a good action fight with Soto Karass," De La Hoya said. "What's happening here is they realize they have to prove themselves if they want to get a really big fight, like against Mayweather."
Khan (29-3, 19 KOs), 27, of England, has won three fights in a row since back-to-back losses in junior welterweight world title bouts against Danny Garcia (a fourth-round knockout in July 2012) and Lamont Peterson (a controversial split decision in December 2011).
Alexander (26-2, 14 KOs), 27, of St. Louis, is a former welterweight and junior welterweight titleholder. He was hungry to face Khan last year and was disappointed he backed out, but he is happy the fight for this December is on track.
"It came right back around," Alexander told ESPN.com. "It looks like it will happen, and I'm excited about it. Should be a big win for me. He tried to just wait to get the Mayweather fight and he didn't get it, and now he has to fight me. So it is inevitable we get in the ring and see who's best and who is catapulted to the next level.
"He's a good fighter. He has some speed. I can hit and not get hit, and I'm faster. He stands there. He's a good, solid fighter, but he don't do anything special. He hits and jumps back. That's how he lost; he got timed jumping in and got caught. People know me as a good counter puncher, and I'm fast so of course I will be able to catch him and catch him good, and my boxing will be there, too. So I think I have the ability to outshine him in this one."
Alexander is also excited to have the first fight of his 10-year career in Las Vegas.
"Every time I was scheduled to fight in Vegas, it always fell through," Alexander said. "This is my dream to fight in Vegas. That's one of my goals, to fight in Vegas, and what better fight than to do it for the first time on a big stage."
Although there is no title at stake, Alexander said he is still up for the fight.
"It matters [that there's no title], but I want to beat a good name and let people know I'm one of the best at welterweight and that I am still the future of the welterweight division and I am still here, and I'm not going anywhere," he said.
De La Hoya also confirmed a previous ESPN.com report that one of the other bouts on the card would be junior middleweight titleholder Demetrius Andrade (21-0, 14 KOs), 26, of Providence, Rhode Island, defending his title for the second time when he faces Golden Boy fighter Jermell Charlo (24-0, 11 KOs), 24, of Houston.
The third bout is likely to pit interim welterweight titlist Keith Thurman (23-0, 21 KOs), 25, of Clearwater, Florida -- one of boxing's most exciting rising stars -- against European welterweight champion Leonard Bundu (31-0, 11 KOs), 39, of Italy. Bundu, who recently signed with Haymon (who also handles Thurman), is unknown in the United States and has no wins of serious note on his record except for his last fight, a split decision against then-undefeated prospect Frankie Gavin of England in European title defense.
De La Hoya said that if Thurman does not appear on the card, former three-division titleholder and featherweight contender Abner Mares (27-1-1, 14 KOs) might be added.