Chris Eubank Jr showed his class, congratulating Liam Smith after losing a bitterly disappointing fourth round knockout on Saturday night, letting him know afterward that there will be a rematch between them.
Eubank Jr intends on activating the rematch clause to force the 34-year-old Smith to fight him again so that he can try and avenge his embarrassing two-knockdown, fourth round knockout loss at the AO Arena in Manchester, England.
Smith (32-3-1, 20 KOs) was talking afterward about wanting a fight with Canelo Alvarez, who knocked him out in nine rounds in 2016. Whether Smith was serious or not is unclear because he was smiling when he said it, but it doesn’t matter.
Knowing how Canelo likes the idea of fighting British fighters, he’d probably take Smith up on the offer if he already wasn’t booked up for 2023, with a fight against John Ryder in May and Dmitry Bivol in September.
The only chance Liam Smith has of getting a Canelo fight is if he chooses to squeeze in a third fight this year in December. Smith would still need to beat Eubank Jr in their rematch for him to have the possibility of being considered by Canelo for a fight in December.
For the time being, Smith is tied to a second fight with Eubank Jr (32-3, 23 KOs) due to the rematch clause he has in their contract.
Congratulations to Liam tonight, nice lil shot you caught me with there my boy. Felt like I could of kept going but referee is in charge & I respect his decision. We’ll get it on again soon 😎 #EubankSmith
— Chris Eubank Jr (@ChrisEubankJr) January 22, 2023
Eubank Jr might win the rematch with Smith because he’s not going to make the same mistake he did in the first fight by backing up against the ropes and allowing Liam to have a stationary target.
When Eubank Jr was in the center of the ring and moving around, he was totally dominating Smith, making it look like child’s play. It was only when he positioned himself with his back against the ropes in the fourth round that he ran into trouble.
As long as Eubank Jr stays on the move and doesn’t stand still, he has a good shot at winning the rematch with Smith, proving that his loss was the result of a careless mistake.
Canelo successfully fought off the ropes against Smith in their fight in September 2016, but he had a better chin and a superior inside game than Eubank Jr.
When Smith tried to unload on Canelo when he was against the ropes, the Mexican star made him pay by hurting him to the body and the head with hard shots.
We didn’t see that tonight from Eubank Jr. He was a sitting duck, and he should have known better than to try and fight Smith from that area of the ring.