Liam Smith vs. Conor Benn doesn’t interest Eddie Hearn
By Barry Holbrook: Promoter Eddie Hearn says he’s not interested in matching his inactive welterweight Conor Benn against Liam Smith despite his impressive fourth round knockout upset of Chris Eubank Jr last Saturday night in Manchester, England.
Hearn states that Smith (33-3-1, 20 KOs) is a middleweight without any “relevance” to the career of the unbeaten Benn (21-0, 14 KOs), who is still currently waiting for the investigation by the World Boxing Council to be completed so that he can get put back in their rankings.
Interestingly, instead of Hearn wanting to make the Smith-Benn fight, he’s still interested in matching the 26-year-old Benn against Eubank Jr (32-3, 23 KOs).
At this point, there likely won’t be much interest from the boxing world in seeing Eubank Jr coming off a bad knockout fighting Benn at 157 or 160.
The only thing Benn gets out of that fight with Eubank Jr is a payday because he won’t be well-respected if he wins after what Liam did last weekend. With Hearn still wanting the Benn vs. Eubank Jr, it sends the message that this is only about money and not about Conor actually trying to prove how good he is.
— Conor Nigel Benn (@ConorNigel) January 25, 2023
If Benn wants to fight a middleweight, he should focus on guys that are active with their careers, unbeaten, and top guys in the division.
Options for Benn at 160:
- Erislandy Lara
- Esquiva Falcao
- Jaime Munguia
- Janibek Alimkhanuly
- Danny Garcia
- Gennadiy Golovkin
- Ryota Murata
“Liam Smith is a middleweight that doesn’t really have any relevance to Conor Benn’s career. But if we can’t fight Eubank, for me, I want to see Conor Benn back at 147 and back on the road to trying to win that world title,” said Eddie Hearn to the DAZN Boxing Show about the direction he wants to take Conor Benn’s career once he’s allowed to return to the ring.
“After [Eubank’s] defeat, Conor would want to make it more difficult for himself even to get credit for that fight,” said Hearn about Benn likely wanting the fight with Eubank Jr to be at 160 rather than 157, which was the previous weight they were supposed to fight on October 8th before Conor failed a drug test.
“It’s still a huge fight. You sell the fight on the rivalry, on a welterweight moving up to 160 to fight a guy that has to win to save his career,” said Hearn about the Benn vs. Eubank Jr fight.
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