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Chris Eubank Jr wants Charlo vs. Derevyanchenko winner

Chris Eubank Jr Jermall Charlo Sergiy Derevyanchenko

By Dan Ambrose: Chris Eubank Jr says he’ll be intently watching this month’s fight between Jermall Charlo and Sergiy Derevyanchenko on September 26, as he wants to fight the winner of that contest. Charlo (30-0, 22 KOs) will be defending his WBC middleweight title against #1 WBC Derevyanchenko (13-2, 10 KOs) at the Mohegan Sun Casino, in Uncasville, Connecticut.

The former IBO super-middleweight champion Eubank Jr (29-2, 22 KOs) isn’t impressed with either fighter Charlo or Derevyanchenko, and he views their fight as a 50-50 toss-up match.

Eubank Jr isn’t ranked in the WBC’s top 15 at middleweight, but he’s at #1 with the WBA right now, but it doesn’t matter what his ranking is. Charlo and Eubank are both with PBC, and they’re not going to stand in the way of this fight. It gives Charlo or Derevyanchenko an excellent opponent to fight after the dust clears from their clash on September 26.

Eubank Jr has lost twice in his career in defeats against Billy Joe Saunders and George Groves, and it’s easy to see why. He didn’t use his jab in either of those fights, and he did a lot of posing after he’d throw a single punch.

Eubank Jr working with Roy Jones Jr

It looked like Eubank Jr was imitating his famous father, Chris Eubank, when he would throw a shot and stand still rather than following up with more punches. It was an odd herky-jerky style that looked utterly disjointed.

Chris Eubank Jr Jermall Charlo Sergiy Derevyanchenko

That style of fighting had worked for Eubank Jr when he was fighting domestic-level fighters in the UK, but it was no good when he got in there with Groves and Saunders. Those guys were professionals, and Eubank Jr needed more skills than he possessed at the time to compete with them.

To that end, Eubank Jr has teamed up with boxing great Roy Jones Jr in hiring him as his new trainer, and supposedly he’s made improvements with his teaching. We know of knowing, though, how well Eubank Jr has progressed because the pandemic has gotten in the way of him fighting.

The last time Eubank Jr fought was in December last year when he beat 2008 Olympian Matt Korobov by a second-round injury stoppage in Brooklyn, New York.

It’s difficult to see that as a win for Eubank due to Korobov suffering a shoulder injury in the second round, which forced him to stop fighting. It was a freak injury, but Eubank Jr was still given credit for beating him.

Charlo, 30, will be fighting for the first time on pay-per-view on SHOWTIME against the number one ranked World Boxing Council Derevyanchenko. Jermall’s twin brother, WBC 154-lb champ Jermell Charlo, will be facing IBF/WBA junior middleweight champion, Jeison Rosario, on the same ard on September 26.

This is a doubleheader PPV event on Showtime is $74.95, which many boxing fans feel is too high for the level of fights on the card and the fact that the pandemic is going on.

Chris Jr will be watching Charlo v. Derevyanchenko

“I’ll be watching that very closely because I’m looking to fight the winner,” said Eubank to Premier Boxing Champions. “I want anyone with the belt in the middleweight or super middleweight division. Wherever the opportunity lies. That fight definitely interests me.”

Eubank Jr had shown interest in fighting Charlo ever since last year in December when he stopped former junior middleweight world title challenger Dennis Hogan in the 7th round. Chris saw weakness in Charlo’s game even back then, and he wants to face him and take his WBC 160-lb strap from him.

Charlo is fortunate that he’s still a world champion, as his 12 round unanimous decision win over Matt Koroboev in December 2018 was highly questionable. It’s a fight that one can watch repeatedly and wonder what the judges were thinking about when they gave Charlo the win by the scores 116-112, 119-108, and 116-112.

The 119-108 score was especially troubling, considering that it was so lopsided for a fighter that appeared to lose. Boxing News 24 had the southpaw Korobov winning by a 116-112 score.  Charlo chose not to give Korobov a rematch, which you can’t blame him for that. Korobov had his number, and it would be risky for Jermall to fight him again at this point.

The handlers for Jermall likely know that, which is why they’ve matched him softly in his last two contests against Brandon Adams and Dennis Hogan. Those guys aren’t in the same league as Korobov, which’s the whole point of it all.

They were safe, gimmie fights for Jermall to make sure he keeps winning. Charlo has done precisely that, but the boxing public hasn’t been fooled.

Charlo’s opposition has been underwhelming

They know that Charlo has been facing weak opposition throughout his 12-year career, and they’re not impressed. They were especially not moved by Charlo’s last two opponents Adams and Hogan, and they wonder why he didn’t speak up to do the right thing by giving Korobov a rematch. The old fighters used to give rematches when they were given controversial decision wins, but we didn’t see that with Jermall or his brother Jermell.

“Sure, he can scrap. He’s not afraid to go toe-to-toe,” Eubank said of Jermall. “He has an energy about him which has helped him get to where he’s at. But as far as what he brings to the table, it doesn’t impress me. I don’t see any danger in what he brings to the ring.”

Apart from Charlo’s fight against 36-year-old Korobov, he hasn’t fought anyone talented during his 12-year professional career, and he’s supposed to be the talented one of the twins. His brother Jermell is flawed and has already been beaten by Tony Harrison. Jermell seems to fight angry, and it leaves him open all the time for shots. Jermell has also been lucky during his career in winning fights that he appeared to lose.

Chris doesn’t see anything remarkable about Derevyanchenko either, but he still feels that he’s got an even shot at beating Charlo. What Eubank Jr didn’t touch on is the possibility of  Derevyanchenko winding up in the same boat as Korobov if the fight goes to a decision.

If it’s a close fight, Derevyanchenko might find himself on the short end of the stick like he was last October against Gennady Golovkin.

Charlo-Derevyanchenko could be a war

“Derevyanchenko is not particularly fast or strong but he’s solid. And he’s not afraid,” said Eubank Jr.  “To me, Charlo-Derevyanchenko is a 50-50 fight. They’re both come-forward fighters, so it should be exciting to watch. It’ll come down to who has the better chin, who has the will to win and who wants it most.”

Derevyanchenko, 34, lost his last fight to Gennady Golovkin by a 12 round decision last October. That was one that boxing fans disagreed with, as they saw it going the other way. They overwhelmingly viewed Derevyanchenko as the winner. Indeed, the fans felt so strongly about their belief that GGG had been given a gift decision that they booed him nonstop as he was being interviewed after the contest.

Chris Eubank Jr Jermall Charlo Sergiy Derevyanchenko

“Derevyanchenko is a come forward fighter. He’s going to bring a lot of power and speed with good technical skills,” Jermall said.

“He calls himself ‘The Technician’ but we’ll see how technical he is once I start putting my jab in his face. I’m going to use all my natural skills in this fight. After I win this fight the sky is the limit,” said Charlo.

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