The Eubank’s – An Enigma that divides opinion between boxing fans
By Jonny Rashman: The name Eubank has perplexed, mesmerized and excited fans for the past 34 years.
Chris Eubank Snr [45-5, 23 ko’s] transfixed boxing fans for 13 years before hanging up the gloves. His son Chris Eubank Jnr ‘the next gen’ [27-2, 21 ko’s] much in the same vein as his father divides opinion between the boxing public.
Both the Eubanks ooze confidence and have a battle-hardened awe associated to them, like Gladiators in medieval times. They have a warrior’s mentality, the “warriors code” as Snr testifies to. If you’re on the battlefield, the men you want either side of you would be Eubank Snr and Jnr
The story has been told many times how dad never wanted son to box, why should he? In contrast to Snr, Jnr grew up within a privileged background. Flashy cars, expensive restaurants and private schooling were the norm. Getting punched in the head for a living was not a necessity. Would all the wars, tragedy and soul-destroying dedication Eubank Snr had to endure put his son off entering a boxing ring? Absolutely not!
The young pretender was sent across the pond to America to earn his stripes and prove he had the skill, will and desire to make it as a prize-fighter. Triumph in the golden gloves and legendary sparring stories confirmed Jnr had all of this buried deep inside of him.
There’s a famous story told many times how a young Eubank Jnr incurred the wrath of the Cuban National Boxing Team. He was sent in as cannon fodder for a sparring session against a Cuban Super Heavyweight in an old abandoned warehouse. A vicious beating unfolded with Jnr being flung outside the ring on to a slab of concrete. Was this enough to deter a young Eubank from ensuing a professional boxing career? Not in million years! He simply licked his lips and continued to take what was being dished out, taking solace from the fact his chin could withstand a barrage of heavy bombs from the much heavier boxer.
The unconventional method in which Eubank Snr has portrayed his life in and out the ring has baffled fans for years. Eccentric is the word that gets tossed around, this may be fitting, however, don’t be fooled by the flamboyant clothes, the audacious statements and the outlandish behavior. This man is a marketing genius who knows exactly how to create attention in order to turn the Eubank name in to a brand. Yes, he has encountered problems like the rest of us, despite this the Eubank name remains relevant today.
Some may argue that Snr’s presence and determination to stay in the limelight has been detrimental to his sons’ career. “Better than Floyd Mayweather, the best since Sugar Ray Leonard, punching power to match Mike Tyson” were some of the many superlatives often used when discussing his son.
Big pressure was placed early on the Brighton native shoulders. Did Eubank Snr really believe his bold statements to ring true? I don’t know. What I do know is it created a real buzz in the boxing community and gave Jnr an enormous platform to perform on, the likes of which most young fighters don’t get to benefit from so early on in their professional boxing careers.
In technical terms Jnr is not as gifted as his former 2 Weight World Champion father, nevertheless, the apple never falls far from the tree, especially with a strong set of genes circulating inside of him. There are many traits Jnr has inherited, such as fitness levels to rival an Olympic runner, fast hands, the ability to have you on the edge of your seat and that famous never say die attitude. Say what you like about the Eubanks. One thing that can’t be denied is their dedication to the sport of boxing.
Team Eubank have always done things in an unconventional way. They are notoriously hard to deal with when negotiating big fights. British Promoters Eddie Hearn and Frank Warren can vouch for that. In a way I think a lot of boxing fans admire how the pair like to do things on their own terms and not be dictated to by boxing promoters and managers. Eubank Snr is adamant the fighter should always earn the lion share of the money when negotiating a big fight. Rightly so. He knows more than most the dangers and pitfalls associated to professional boxing. The tragic ending to his fight against Michael Watson confirms this.
Eubank Jnr is very shrewd and just like Snr knows how to enhance the Eubank brand. He knows controversy sells. In an interview with Business Insider in 2017 he stated, “I cannot be dull, I cannot be a grey character, and I have to excite, I have to be interesting, controversial, and get people talking”. This gives an insight in to the economical mind of the former World Title Challenger.
He has embraced the new era of Social Media and has a vast following, frequently posting training videos and snapshots of his privileged lifestyle. A recent video of a brand new, bright orange, Azure Mclaren being delivered to his home validates this. Although his bold statements prior to his fights against Billy Joe Saunders and George Groves never came to fruition. He has still managed to keep his name in the public eye and is just over a week away from another big British fight against former two-time Super Middleweight World Champion James DeGale.
The Eubank name will forever be synonymous with the sport of boxing. Fans will always have conflicting opinions when discussing the father and son duo. Their Statements throughout the years have often been borderline delusional. However, when you look back at all the thrilling fights, fascinating build ups and all the wars past and present. It becomes apparent they have become a tremendous addition to the sport of boxing. Love them or hate them, you will tune in to watch them!