Chris Eubank Jr. Making Big Deal Out Of Beating Liam Smith
By Charles Brun: Chris Eubank Jr. magnified the importance of his 10th round knockout victory over Liam Smith in their rematch last Saturday night in Manchester.
It’s great that Eubank Jr. (33-3, 24 KOs) avenged his fourth round knockout loss to Smith (33-4-1, 20 KOs) from earlier this year, but the victory was an empty one.
The reality is Eubank Jr’s chances of beating any of the top fighters in the middleweight division are slim because the trick that he used tonight to beat Smith, clinching nonstop, won’t work against the top fighters at 160.
These are the fighters Eubank Jr. must beat to accomplish something on the world scene at 160:
Janibek AlimkhanulyCarlos AdamesErislandy LaraJermall CharloVincenzo Gualtieri
With how Eubank Jr. talked after the fight tonight, he’s clearly not interested in fighting any of the above middleweights, and you can’t blame him. These guys would have easily solved the tactics that Eubank Jr. used to defeat the hapless Smith, and they would have dominated him tonight.
Instead of them, Eubank Jr. wants Kell Brook, Conor Benn, and 41-year-old Gennadiy Goilovkin.
Benn & Brook are welterweights, and Golovkin might not ever fight again. If he does, he won’t likely face Eubank Jr. because the money wouldn’t be huge.
Gareth Davies: “How did that feel to right the wrongs?”
Chris Eubank Jr: “I always knew I had that in me. My back was against the wall. I had no other option but to go out there and put it all on the line. Do or die. I said it before, and it’s the truth.
“If you put me in a situation like that, I’m going to come out on top. I have to.”
Gareth: “There have been times where you’ve rested in the ring because you’ve been so comfortable. Your focus was extraordinary tonight. Is that one of the best performances that you can remember in your career?”
Eubank Jr: “Especially with coming off the back of a defeat like I had last time, the bar was low. People saying I’m shot, people saying I’m too old. People are saying I have too much money. I don’t want to be in the sport anymore.
“I’m not dedicated. Roy Jones is messing me up. I switch trainers too much; I play poker too much. I talk to too many girls. The list goes on. The fact of the matter is, I’m in the gym every day, even when I’m not in fight camp, and that’s how I can put on performances like that.”
Gareth: “World title coming up. Conor Benn is coming up. What do you want to do?”
Eubank Jr: “I want to do whatever the fans want to see. There are some huge names out there, big opportunities, world titles, big fights. It’s all on the table.”