Badou Jack: Groves should fight DeGale
By Scott Gilfoid: WBC super middleweight champion Badou Jack (20-1-1, 12 KOs) thinks Britain’s George Groves (21-3, 16 KOs) should turn to IBF 168lb champion James DeGale for a fight if he’s still eager to try and win a world title.
The 27-year-old Groves came up empty last night in losing a 12 round split decision to Jack at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada. Jack doesn’t think it’s such a great idea for Groves to try and fight him again for the title, because he feels he’d beat him again.
Jack thinks it would be a good idea for Groves to fight DeGale if he’s interested in fighting for a world title immediately. He doesn’t think that Groves would beat DeGale, because he feels that DeGale has gotten better in the last four years since Groves beat him in 2011.
“I thought I won clearly,” Badou said at the post-fight press conference. “I’m very ready to fight anybody. That’s [Badou vs. Chavez Jr.] is a very good fight for me. We can make it happen. He’s a good fighter; not as good as his father, but he’s a tough guy. I wanted to hit him [Groves] with a right hand all night long, but I got the victory. I should have stayed calm and let the knockout come. [He hit me with] nothing that hurt me. He’s got a good jab. I should have put more pressure on him. You live and learn. I think I broke him down with body shots. I think I should have gone more to the body. I probably would have got a knockout.”
When asked if Groves can someday win a world title, Jack said “Not against me. He’s a tough guy. He’s the number one contender for my title. I’m sure he can win a world title. Maybe he can fight James DeGale over there in the UK.”
If DeGale is willing to fight Groves with him coming off of a loss, then he should go for the fight. I just don’t think this would be a good time for the two of them to face each other. There was talk of a Groves vs. DeGale fight at Wembley Stadium in London if Groves had won the WBC title.
It would have made it a unification fight between him and DeGale. However, now it wouldn’t be nearly as big a fight, and I don’t think it would be realistic to stage their fight at Wembley.
Ideally, Groves should wait until he can put several important wins together before he looks to face DeGale. If Groves could come back from this loss and take some scalps from some of the top fighters, then it makes sense for a title fight between him and DeGale.
What Groves should do is lean on his promoters at Sauerland Events to have them match him against WBO super middleweight champion Arthur Abraham. Groves would need to get ranked in the top 15 by the World Boxing Organization though, because the president of the organization likely wouldn’t give the green light to a Abraham-Groves fight if Groves isn’t ranked in the top 15 by the WBO.
“Absolutely,” Badou said when asked if he’d be interested in fighting DeGale. “He’s a good fighter. I actually think he’s a better fighter than George Groves right now. I know Groves beat him, but that was four or five years ago. He’s a good fighter.”
Badou is more interested in fighting Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. or Lucian Bute next rather than a fight against DeGale. There’s likely more money for Badou in fights against the likes of those two than there would be for a DeGale fight. Bute has a huge following in Canada, and Badou could make big bank if he were to go over there to fight him. Chavez Jr. is still popular despite his recent loss to Andrzej Fonfara.
Jack beat Groves by the scores 115-112, 116-111 for Jack, and 114-113 for Groves.
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