Chris Eubank Jr: 3 Strikes
The forthcoming fight between James DeGale and Chris Eubank Jr is being promoted to some degree as a retirement fight, the loser leaves town.
Words with little meaning are often used to sell tickets or a PPV, but a retirement fight does seem a reasonable proposition for the loser.
James DeGale has shown recent signs of the irreversible slide, and certainly a loss to Eubank Jr will leave him with little choice but to exit the sport.
For Eubank Jr though, it might not quite be so straightforward. Once hailed by his father that he will be better than Floyd Mayweather, a loss to DeGale at the O2 in February will derail any hype around him, probably forever.
An inability to listen, to evolve, even an inability to fight at his more natural weight has stunted his growth as a fighter. All the flaws he showed in his loss to Billy Joe Saunders were there again in his defeat at the hands of George Groves last year.
Groves schooled him, and despite showing tremendous grit to stay in the fight, his limitations were yet again exposed.
A move back down to middleweight looked advisable, but yet again Eubank Jr has decided to ignore common sense and stay where he is at a sizable disadvantage.
However, DeGale looks to be an opponent who could add a much needed ‘A’ name on his resume. Injuries and miles on the clock seemingly have made DeGale not quite what he once was, in simple terms, beatable.
Eubank’s own arrogance and his ego must be left at the door, that change needs to happen now. While you could forsee Eubank Jr being rebranded as a middleweight should he lose to DeGale. But equally it could be 3 strikes and your out.