Former Super-middleweight champion and British boxing legend Chris Eubank Sr. shares his thoughts on upcoming Deontay Wilder vs. Tyson Fury III rubbermatch and the tactics involved, US amateur boxing legend and Olympic Gold medalist Mark Breland who threw in the towel in the Wilder vs. Fury rematch, and the Golden Eras of boxing.
Eubank Sr on Deontay Wilder relying on power and reportedly dropping trainer Mark Breland:
Power or speed, they are get out of jail free cards. They’re largely natural factors. Take Nigel Benn’s power or speed away, I’d of had no problem with him at all. Naseem couldn’t of got past Area Title level. Even, say, Roy Jones – I’d of stood him on his head if you took away his speed. Obviously you can’t do that because they do have these factors.
But if you haven’t learned the fundamentals and done the groundwork, I mean, you’re in trouble at some point. Benn against Watson, Naz against Barrera, (and) Roy Jones against Montell Griffin. You are in trouble. I mean, Deontay, he came from basketball, right?
Listen to your trainer. There’s nobody more qualified than Mark Breland to teach you fundamentals – the straight jab, the straight right, fighting off the front foot on-balance. Let me tell you something, Mr. Breland was the God of boxing when I started – he was four times, five times Golden Gloves Champion in New York City. These were as tough to win as an Olympic gold as Mark Breland is proof.
He (Breland) had the best jab and scored right-hand knockouts in three-round amateur contests with head guards and big gloves. He won the Olympics hands down. Even Pernell Whitaker wasn’t considered as good as this man. Listen to this man, you know!?
Eubank Sr on fighters of recent eras being beneath his era:
You can’t rate the fighters today as being in the category of the fighters of the 80s and 90s. They play basketball today, they don’t box. They go into football, MMA, personal training, social media – they don’t box. They boxed in the 70s and 80s, you see. Look at the USA Olympic Teams of 1976, (and) 1984. They found the trials and the box offs and the national championships more competitive than the Olympic championships themselves, okay?
Most of the middleweights of the past 20 years wouldn’t be in the top 20 of 30 years ago. Frank Tate won the Olympic gold medal and yet New York Champion Dennis Milton of the Bronx used to get the better of him. He had closer fights with the Ron Essetts and Miltons and Reggie Johnsons than he did in the Olympics. It’s all on YouTube.
I’m told Michael Spinks and Hill had tougher opponents in Lindell Holmes and Michael Nunn respectively to even get to the Olympics in the first place. Things like this. It’s proof in the pudding. The Russians and the Cubans and so on, they didn’t turn over back then, they were older gentlemen fighting young talent. That conveyor belt is no longer there, look at the USA Olympic Teams of recent times – there’s the proof of the pudding.
Eubank Sr on Wilder’s chances versus Tyson Fury in third fight:
Wilder has to jab. You’re fighting a taller man with longer arms and who moves away from shots, so you have got to jab or the right hand is going to fall short of course. Mr Breland would’ve told him that. Just like I told Christopher how to box (Billy Joe) Saunders and (George) Groves. Don’t just swing and hope for the best – listen to the elders. Get your feet into position by closing the distance, closing the distance, closing the distance; weight on the front foot, jab, step into the jab, step in after the jab.
These men are nearly 7ft, so two steps and either of them are on the ropes. That’s what you do. Double it up. Watch Oscar De La Hoya in his prime. Watch your own trainer in his prime, Mark Breland. Watch Marvin Hagler in his prime. (Watch) The great Mike McCallum against the incredible Roy Jones. Gifts won’t always get you out of jail, of course.