Born rivals. This is how one of the biggest fights in British boxing history is being pitched. Chris Eubank Jr and Conor Benn are set to clash at a sold out O2 Arena on Saturday night, in the third fight between the two namesakes. With that being said, Eubank Jr and Conor Benn haven’t faced each other before. Jr’s father, Chris Eubank and Conor’s father, Nigel Benn put on two of the more exciting, captivating bouts and enjoyed a bitter rivalry throughout the 90s. Eubank scored a TKO over Benn in their first meeting in 1990 and three years later, the two men fought to a draw at Old Trafford in Manchester.
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The Fight Facts
Chris Eubank Jr
Record: 32-2 (23 knockouts)
Notable wins: Gary O’Sullivan, Arthur Abraham, Avni Yildrim, James DeGale, Liam Williams
Record: 21-0 (14 knockouts)
Notable wins: Samuel Vargas, Chris Algieri, Chris van Heerden
The Fight Itself
This fight will be contested at 157lbs, something that is extremely contentious. Eubank Jr has fought as high as 168lbs and is a career middleweight at 160lbs. Getting those extra three pounds off is going to be extremely hard for Jr and it’s one of the biggest talking points around the fight. There are strict rules that Eubank Jr must adhere to, including a £100k fine per pound of weight over 157lbs as well as a strict rehydration clause.
In classic Eubank Jr style, he’s trolling everyone on his social media. Whether it’s eating cake, KFC or eating at ‘Salt bae’s’ restaurant, Eubank Jr appears to be taking the fight lightly and not worrying about the weight cut. We all know how hard Eubank trains but we also know that he often runs his own camps, trains himself and prefers not to take the advice of others. With that being said, his experience talks for itself. How much the weight cut will affect him is certainly debatable and arguably the biggest talking point.
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‘The Destroyer’, Benn is a ferocious puncher, however, we don’t know how his power will transfer up in weight. He usually competes at welterweight, which is 147lbs. With 14 knockouts in 21 wins, Benn’s power is something to watch out for. It is also questionable how he will hold up against the bigger man. Reports state that he’s ‘more than‘ holding his own in sparring, however.
He’ll likely be the faster man in the ring but the experience certainly lies in the gloves of Eubank Jr. How seriously is Eubank Jr taking this fight? It’s hard to tell. We know behind the scenes, he’ll certainly be working hard. He’s stated that if Conor Benn beats him, he’ll retire from boxing. Despite this, he’s stated that he will only be at 60% in the ring. He puts this down to the weight cut and claims, ‘I’ll be 60% on the night and that’ll be enough to do whatever I want with you‘, when talking to Benn at a face-off.
How will the fight play out? Nobody knows until Saturday night, but what we do know is that after fight week drug test failures, bitter rivalries and bad blood between the two families, we can expect a barn burner.
We discussed the fight itself on the latest MMASucka podcast, which can be seen below: