Senior Boxing Journalist @JamesDielhenn
“I was trying to get under Chris’ skin”
Last Updated: 12/07/20 7:19pm
Chris Eubank Jr has been targeted by Denis Douglin, his former sparring partner who controversially picked him to be beaten by James DeGale.
Eubank Jr admitted he was “surprised” a year ago before his fight with DeGale when Douglin, an exercise partner he hired, said: “Chris fell for the simple traps I set him and James is much better and slicker than I am.”
Even DeGale admitted: “I would been very unhappy if one of my sparring partners had said something like this about me.”
Eubank Jr earned a career-best bring about by beating DeGale, who retired fleetingly afterwards, via a unanimous decision last year.
Douglin has now told Sky Sports: “I said that if he fought the DeGale from before his Badou Jack fight, it would be too much for Eubank Jr.
“That DeGale had more experience and was an Olympian.
“But the DeGale we had viewed as of late? The DeGale that fought Jack? I knew Eubank Jr would beat him.
“I said it because I was trying to get under Chris’ skin. I would like to fight Chris. We have an excellent relationship but, now I’m at 160lbs, I want to fight him.
“I haven’t any problem with Chris but I’m calling him out.
“I respect Chris – he is just a hell of a fighter with a hell of a work ethic. Just because I’m calling him out that does not mean I do believe less of him.
“But we’re in the same weight class and I think I possibly could beat him.
“We’ve sparred since when he was preparing for his last fight. It was super competitive. We talked a whole lot and banged a lot. I would say I acquired the most effective of the work. He would say that he got the best of it. That’s how fighters are.
“So let’s fight, and let’s see.”
Eubank Jr won on his US debut last time out and contains relocated his career stateside with Roy Jones Jr as his newest trainer.
Douglin, a former opponent of George Groves, remembers his part in Eubank Jr’s biggest-ever win fondly.
“It was a great experience,” he said. “I stayed in his house, not a hotel, which was cool.
“Eubank Jr is amongst the hardest workers I’ve ever been around.
“Because he trained himself he doesn’t have some of the skill. But his work ethic? That’s great. He is a very focused fighter.”