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Eubank Jr vs Benn - Oct 8 🇬🇧 🥊


wandshogun09

Who wins and how?   

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Sod it. Thought I’d whack a separate thread up for this one. Next weekend at the O2 in London.

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DAZN PPV
Chris Eubank Jr vs Conor Benn

Mary Romero vs Ellie Scotney

Galal Yafai vs Gohan Rodriguez 

Harlem Eubank vs David Martin 

Lyndon Arthur vs Cesar Hernan Reynoso 

Felix Cash vs Connor Coyle

Matty Harris vs Chris Healey

Shannon Courtenay vs Gemma Ruegg

Chloe Watson vs Nancy Franco 

 

First off, I love that poster. I don’t know if it’s an official one but it’s a cool play off this and I think it’s ace…

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Bout order’s probably all to cock but those are the fights as far as I can tell. Nothing amazing on the undercard really but I like Lyndon Arthur, couple of the other fights might be decent. The main event is a fun one though. A weird one, but fun. DAZN are taking the piss though. Unless I’ve got it wrong, this is gonna be £19.99 but you need a DAZN subscription just to order it. So if you’re not already subbed, it’s gonna be £7.99 on top of the 20 notes. Fuck that. I’ll find some way to watch. Not a chance I’m forking out £28 though. Maybe I’ve misunderstood it but from what I can gather, that’s how it’s gonna be.

 

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Chris Eubank Jr vs Conor Benn then. Eubank vs Benn 3 - the next generation. It’s a weird one but I’ll happily admit I’ve been sucked into this thing. I think when both of these two started Boxing professionally, there was always that little question of ‘imagine if these two fight somewhere down the road’, just because of who their Dads are. But I don’t think anyone really expected it to ever actually happen. The gap in weight being the main obstacle but they just seemed on different paths anyway. When it was first announced I was kind of intrigued but just thought it was a bit odd. Now we’re just over a week out from the fight, I’m all in. Sod it. At a time when the mega anticipated fights like Fury vs Joshua and Crawford vs Spence seem destined to never happen, this obviously isn’t anywhere near being on that level but it’ll do. The build up has been enjoyable so far. Of course, the comparisons to their old men’s classic rivalry have been running rampant. It was always gonna be the case. You couldn’t not mention it. It’s the reason there was ever any legitimate interest in this fight getting made to begin with. I think the fight itself will be at least entertaining as well though. The whole thing has brought up a lot of good memories for me because the Eubank vs Benn rivalry was really what properly hooked me as a fight fan.

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The first Chris Eubank vs Nigel Benn clash went down on November 18th 1990 at the NEC in Birmingham. Just down the road from me but I was 5 years old at the time and completely oblivious to anything that wasn’t the Turtles and Count Duckula. It wasn’t until years later I found out my uncle was in attendance. Jammy bastard. He was Boxing mad and was basically the person who sparked my interest in it as a kid. He had Sky and used to tape me the WWF PPVs in the early-mid 90s and if there was space left on the tape he’d fill it with any other wrestling he’d see on. My Dad would often take me and my sister over to his house on Saturday nights and those were the days of this…

Just hearing that music brings back so many memories. On one of these Saturdays at my uncle’s, there must’ve been a fight on that I took an interest in and from then on he’d tell me stories, show me old magazines and stuff. After that, whenever he’d tape me a WWF PPV, he’d fill the rest of the tape with all sorts of Boxing matches from his ridiculous collection. This was the first time I saw the likes of Marvin Hagler (who became an instant favourite), Roberto Duran, prime Mike Tyson Julio Cesar Chavez etc. I had no concept of when these fights happened so I assumed these guys were all still fighting. Of course some were. But I was gutted to learn Hagler had been retired for years by that point.

Anyway, when I was 17, my uncle died unexpectedly at 37 of a heart attack. It wasn’t until after he died that I learned just how deep into Boxing he was and how many shows he’d been to. He’d mentioned once that he was at the first Eubank vs Benn fight and it blew my mind. After he died, his wife gave my Dad a load of old Boxing stuff he’d have wanted me to have. I’ve still got a bunch of old VHS tapes in a big box in the garage that I can’t play but I don’t have the heart to chuck them out. Amongst the stuff was his original ticket from Eubank vs Benn 1. I’ve moved house 3 times since then and I’ve tried to find it a few times with no luck. Chances are it’s lost forever.

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This was classic shit. Like I said, even though I was alive in 1990, it was before my time. But what a fight it was. The build up was tremendous, the clash of personalities and the way Eubank would try to get under Benn’s skin by being so dismissive, leading to Benn just wanting to smash his face in even more. The contract signing alone is one of my favourite bits of British Boxing history.

“Let’s have some parliamentary procedure here, alright?”

The night arrived and they went to war. Both landed big shots, both hurt each other, Eubank was craftier and trickier while a wound up angry Benn was just trying to knock his head off. By the 9th round, Benn’s eye had been swollen shut and he looked worse for wear. Eubank seized his opportunity and pounced with a final flurry that forced the referee to step in and wave it off.

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The picture says it all. The extreme highs and lows of a gruelling battle. The sight of Benn at the stoppage, just looking emotionally crushed with the ref holding him almost consoling him is unforgettable. And Eubank had erased all doubt with this win, especially being able to stop Benn. From everything I’ve seen of the build up, it seemed like many thought Benn would be too much for Eubank and that Eubank wasn’t really tested. And the way he talked and carried himself went against the general perception of what a granite hard fighter should be. But after this, it was clear that beyond the carefully manufactured image, the posh accent, the lisp and the suits, Chris Eubank was triple tough, fearless and had heart for days. He took some horrible shots from Benn, soaked them up, outlasted him and put him away. They were very respectful to each other in the ring after the fight but it wasn’t long until they were at each other’s throats in the media again.

1991 saw Eubank beat Dan Sherry and Gary Stretch before being locked into a two fight series with Michael Watson. He won a controversial majority decision the first time, triggering an instant rematch. The second fight was incredible, honestly probably every bit as good as the Benn fight, Eubank got the late stoppage but it ended in tragedy with Watson’s career ending brain injury. Benn also won 4 fights, 3 inside the distance. Only one of any note being his 7th round stoppage of Robbie Sims, the half brother of Marvelous Marv!

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Two of my all time favourite fighters ever, across all combat sports.

In 1992/93, both Eubank and Benn continued doing their own thing but there was always talk of them squaring off again and there was always needle and digs back and forth in interviews. Eubank won 6 more fights before going to a split draw against Ray Close in May 93. Benn also won 6 fights including a really fun 4 round shootout with Lou Gent in June 93, before putting Gent down. Finally, the rematch was on.

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Now this one I do remember. It was held at Old Trafford in Manchester in front of about 42,000 people. October 93, I was 8 by this time. The first big fights I properly remember and recall being excited to see were Lennox Lewis vs Frank Bruno and Eubank vs Benn 2. Those fights happened around a week apart, which is mental when you think about it. Imagine having two domestic fights that big on consecutive weekends now?

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It was a different kind of fight this time. Not a patch on the excitement of the first battle but still a good, engrossing fight. Benn didn’t seem as gotten to this time and fought with less emotion. It didn’t make for as explosive a fight but he was definitely getting the better of more of the exchanges, from what I recall. I suppose he’d had a few years to get used to Eubank by this point so it wasn’t gonna phase him as much. They went the full 12 rounds and it ended in a split draw. Many felt like Benn should’ve got the decision. I’d have to rewatch it, haven’t seen it in at least 10 years now. But I remember feeling like Benn won as well. I’m sure even Eubank himself as good as admitted it in his autobiography and in a documentary later. But Benn did have a point deducted for a shot he landed to the balls, so that’s what probably made the difference in the end.

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My favourite story relating to this fight is that Don King supposedly had an agreement in place where he’d get the promotional rights for the winner and loser’s next fight, or couple of fights or whatever. King was lining up Michael Nunn to challenge the winner at the time. But the fight ending in a draw was a loophole that meant King got fuck all. One of the only times in all the years King promoted and fucked everyone over, that he got a taste of his own medicine for once.

You’d have thought with how the second fight ended that Eubank vs Benn 3 was as good as a lock to happen in 1994 or 1995 but it wasn’t to be. Over the following years, both mens careers were winding down. It’s been said over the years that Eubank was never quite the same fighter after injuring Watson in 1991. I’m sure he said in his book that he lost a lot of his ‘killer instinct’ after that. He fought 23 times after that Watson fight and only stopped 6 opponents in that timeframe. Obviously the losses to Steve Collins were the beginning of the end but he finally gained the respect he always wanted at the end of his career, oddly in losing efforts against Joe Calzaghe on short notice and Carl Thompson up in weight. He took some punishment in those fights but it was nice to see him finally ‘turn babyface’. He finished up in 1998 with a record of 45-5-2 with 23 knockouts.

Benn had his own tragic moment in 1995, when he ended the career of Gerald McClellan.

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I clearly remember staying up and watching this with my Dad. I didn’t understand the severity of it at the time but the next morning it was all over the news and in the papers and stuff. For years I felt sorry for McClellan and, while I wouldn’t actively wish his situation on anyone, I must admit that after hearing what a cunt he was and how he’d abuse dogs and stuff, my sympathy for him pretty much evaporated. The fight itself was an all out war though. One of the best fights on British soil but the way it ended understandably means it’s not really celebrated as such. Anyone who’s never read ‘War, Baby’ on the subject, I’d highly recommend it. Also, the great ‘Fight Of Their Lives’ documentary ITV did years ago. That should be easy to find on YouTube. It was such a brutal fight on both men though. Benn was already coming towards the end of his career by 95, that McClellan fight just sped up the process. He looked a shell of himself after that, only fought 5 more times and never had a meaningful win again. His career ended in 1996 after 3 straight losses to Sugar Boy Malinga and Steve Collins x2. His final record was 42-5-1 with 35 knockouts.

They still popped up from time to time. Sometimes on more friendly terms, sometimes having a pop at each other again. Does anyone remember that show they did, I think on Channel 5, where they had to live like Gladiators or some bollocks and compete against each other?

Anyway, fast forward to now, because I know I’m waffling. It’s on.

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Don’t know what the fuck happens here. It’s at a Catchweight of 157lbs. Benn’s coming up in weight, Eubank’s cutting down and there’s the whole rehydration clause shite. Eubank’s kept saying he’s only gonna be at 60% for this but that “it will be enough to handle Benn”. He’s been posting videos of himself eating burgers and all sorts. He’s also saying he’ll retire if he loses. Benn’s saying he’s going for the knockout, which of course, what else is he gonna say? I can’t see it myself. Eubank doesn’t exactly seem chinny and given the weight difference, I’d be a bit surprised if he’s the first to stop Eubank. Whatever the case, I’m interested to find out. Neither are elite, in my opinion. Eubank’s a little bit more tested obviously, you’d expect that with him being 7 years older and more experienced. But it’s not like he’s been in with tippy top guys on the world stage himself. It’s not like he’s really got any seriously outstanding wins. And at 33, he should have by now. He looked good against Liam Williams in his last fight in February but aside from that, he hasn’t blown anyone away with his performances really. Benn’s been more exciting to watch, definitely his father’s son, but he’s still not been in with that next level yet. 

Few bits and pieces you might wanna watch…

Eubank Jr vs Benn press conference;

Face Off: Eubank Jr vs Benn;

Eddie Hearn on Eubank Jr vs Benn;

Frank Warren on Eubank Jr vs Benn;

Eubank Jr, Benn, Eddie Hearn and Kalle Sauerland on Good Morning Britain;

 

Edited by wandshogun09
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Nice one I didn’t know about that. I’m gonna fully get into the hype this week. I’ve seen a fair bit of negativity about it but balls to that. I’m up for it. Fight fans are a miserable bunch sometimes. It’s like if it’s not a fight between two guys with a bunch of belts or shiny unbeaten records, everyone else is a ‘bum’ and you can’t enjoy any other fight for what it is. 

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On 10/1/2022 at 11:13 AM, wandshogun09 said:

Nice one I didn’t know about that. I’m gonna fully get into the hype this week. I’ve seen a fair bit of negativity about it but balls to that. I’m up for it. Fight fans are a miserable bunch sometimes.  

what kind of negativity?

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Just the usual misery like whenever there’s a fight that’s getting hype that doesn’t feature two ‘pound-for-pounders’. Like anything less than #1 vs #1a is shit. In fairness though, as this fight has gotten closer it’s been mostly positive. Only negativity I’m seeing at the moment is about DAZN wanting £28 for it, and I can’t disagree with the moaning about that.

That documentary you mentioned is on BBC One on Wednesday night at 10:40pm by the way. ‘Born Rivals’.

Got to say as well, as much as I’ve always been on the Benn side of the rivalry over the years, I have been getting a kick out of Eubank Jr winding Conor up throughout the build up. Conor’s trying to act like it’s not bothering him, and at the start like when they had that first press conference I think he wasn’t that fussed. But you can really see he wants to lunge at Jr every time they’re near each other as fight week approaches. Definite shades of their old fellas before the first fight. History might be repeating itself a bit. 

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the DAZN PPV thing is definitely worth a moan about. The fact that current subscribers don't get the show at a discounted price is a bit of a kick in the teeth after seeing them doing that for the KSI and Canelo/GGG fight...not to mention the initial pitch that there wouldn't be any PPV on the platform.

...what I will moan about is that DAZN hasn't sorted out a license for its content to be shown in pubs/bars yet, and I'm actually on a night out next Saturday, that is shit 

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To echo Wand's earlier comments...

I will get to the fight eventually here, but it feels like there's a massive black cloud over this event at the moment. I don't know if i'm just neglecting the actualy build up content (I will get to it), and am only seeing the stuff regarding the backlash of DAZN PPV, and the continuing fallout of the Fury/Joshua mess, and a small number of people not happy with the matchup, but it feels like everything I'm seeing regarding the fight is negative.

Edited by Egg Shen
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