By Scott Gilfoid: Chris Eubank Jr. had a chance to fight IBF/IBO/WBA/WBC middleweight champion Gennady ‘GGG’ Golovkin (37-0-1, 33 KOs) in 2016, but he failed to sign for the fight in enough time to make the contest happen.
In hindsight, it might have been the best thing for Eubank Jr. that he didn’t face GGG. Eubank Jr. lost given a boxing lesson last Saturday night by George Groves in the World Boxing Super Series semifinals tournament in Manchester, England. The fight showed a clear picture of the major flaws and limits in the game of the 28-year-old Eubank Jr. (26-2, 20 KOs). Up until this fight with Groves, Eubank Jr’s flaws had been disguised due to the weak opposition that had been shuffled in one after another on a conveyor belt for him to beat and look good against.
Back in September 2016 when Golovkin’s promoter Tom Loeffler was trying fustily to setup a fight against Eubank, he had a 5-fight winning streak going for him and a lot of boxing fans were giving him a chance of beating GGG. Eubank Jr. was extremely confidence of victory over Golovkin. It’s quite predictable that had the fight taken place in 2016, Eubank Jr. would have attacking Golovkin by going straight into the teeth of his offense, trying to knock him out.
We wouldn’t have seen the running from Eubank Jr. like we saw with Saul Canelo Alvarez last September. To his credit, Eubank Jr. doesn’t run from his opponents. He attacks them all out and hopes for the best. You have to possess more than hope unfortunately, as we saw in his loss to Groves last weekend. The chances are very high that Eubank Jr. would have taken a horrendous beating from start to the bitter finish by Golovkin and it would have been a fight that would have needed to be stopped.
Eubank Jr. says he’s going to possibly move back down to the middleweight division. If he does that, it’ll put him in the same neighborhood where GGG dwells and that could mean trouble. Golovkin’s promoter Tom Loeffer said last year that he would still be interested in matching GGG with Eubank Jr. Whether Loeffler still has interest in making a fight between Golovkin and Eubank Jr. after last Saturday night is the big question. It might have been too much of a thrashing of Eubank Jr. for Loeffler to still consider him as a serious future option for GGG.
If Golovkin needs an available opponent for a third fight in 2018, Eubank Jr. might be an option if he moves down to 160 and gets a good win under his belt. Golovkin has a fight with Saul Canelo Alvarez on May 5th, and then there could be a unification match with WBO title holder Billy Joe Saunders in September or October if the fight can get made. If everything goes right with GGG winning those 2 fights, then a match against Eubank Jr. might be something he could consider if he has time to fight 3 times in 2018.