Groves suffers injury, fight with Jack expected to still take place
By Scott Gilfoid: In a bit of bad news for fans of George Groves (21-2, 16 KOs), he reportedly suffered a head injury today while training with the Royal Marines in Portsmouth. The injury was bad enough to where the 27-year-old Groves had to be taken to a nearby hospital to be looked over.
Groves has since been released from the hospital and his head injury isn’t expected to impact his August 22nd title shot against WBC super middleweight champion Badou Jack (19-1-1, 12 KOs) in Las Vegas, Nevada. However, with head injuries you just never know for sure.
With Groves suffering back to back knockout losses to Carl Froch not long ago, the last thing Groves needs is a head injury to slow him up for his march to a world title shot against the talented Jack. But if Groves can’t take the fight then the next available contender will need to step in and face Badou Jack. The next highest ranked WBC contender is #2 WBC Gilberto Rodriguez, and after him, #3 Callum Smith. If Rodriguez chooses not to take the fight, then it’s likely that Smith would step up to take the fight.
Groves’ promoters at Sauerland Events said this in a statement on his injury:
“George was taken to hospital for precautionary checks but immediately released following the incident that took place while taking part in a boat activity with the Marines. The injury will not affect his preparations for the Jack fight and he will continue his training camp as planned.”
For the sake of Groves and his promoters, you have to hope there aren’t any lingering effects from the head injury, because if he fails to come back strong from the injury, Badou Jack will be obliterating Groves in short order on August 22nd. Groves is already on shaky ground anyway due to him fighting a big puncher that puts a great deal of pressure on his opponents. This fight is a lot like Adrien Broner vs. Shawn Porter, with Jack playing the part of Porter and Groves another Broner.
Groves hasn’t faced any real competition since his loss to Froch in 2014. Since that fight, Groves has taken on Denis Douglin and Christopher Rebrasse. Those are a couple of 2nd tier type fighters. I mean, Rebrasse is ranked #11 by the WBC, but he’s more of a non-top 15 fighter rather than an actual contender in my view. The thing is Groves didn’t even look good against him, as he was shaken up once or twice by hard shots from Rebrasse.
Jack, 31, is all wrong for a guy like Groves. Jack has excellent punching power, and he’s very good at putting pressure on his opponents. He also has a really good chin. Jack recently beat Anthony Dirrell b y a 12 round decision to win the WBC 168lb tile. Jack looked dramatically improved from the fighter that was stopped by Derek Edwards in the 1st round in February of last year. Jack’s chin was better and his power just as good as ever. Jack just looked great