Is Eubank Jr. All That? He Can Prove it in Super Series Bout vs. Groves

Jason Lake

Tuesday, February 13, 2018 9:43 PM UTC

Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2018 9:43 PM UTC

Chris Eubank Jr. has yet to fight for a major title, but he’s the favorite on the boxing odds board for Saturday’s super-middleweight bout with WBA champ George Groves.

Boxing: Chris Eubank Jr. vs. George GrovesFree Boxing Pick: Groves +165Best Line Offered: Heritage

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Murat Gassiev and Yunier Dorticos did indeed give us a show last week in Sochi, Russia. Gassiev did most of the heavy lifting but Dorticos was game, and he almost went the distance before getting knocked down three times in the 12th round and losing via TKO. Alas, we had "under" 9.5 rounds (-171) in our boxing picks. At least we can take solace that the price was up to -195 by bell time.

We’ve got another World Boxing Super Series matchup on Saturday in Manchester, United Kingdom, where WBA (Super) super-middleweight champion George Groves will face IBO champ Chris Eubank Jr. in the semifinals. Eubank is the -190 favorite on the boxing odds board as we go to press. However, Groves is the No. 2 fighter in this division according to The Ring, with Eubank at No. 4. Something’s amiss here.

Don’t Box Me In

Well, The Ring might be the Bible of boxing, but BoxRec has Eubank (26-1, 20 KOs) at the top of the super middleweight division, two spots ahead of Groves (27-3, 20 KOs). And the gap is even bigger in their pound-for-pound rankings, where Eubank checks in at No. 22 and Groves at No. 39. Otherwise, these fighters are virtually the same size and age, and both are northpaws.

Despite their similarities, Eubank is the new kid on the block. Groves turned pro three years earlier in 2008, and already has five major title fights under his belt; this will be the first time Eubank has fought for a major championship. Still, the betting market has gotten behind the rising star, lifting Eubank up from -120 at the open.

Less Talk, More Rock

Groves thinks there’s too much puffery going on here. He compares Saturday’s fight to his 2014 WBA title rematch at a packed Wembley Stadium against Carl Froch -- which Groves lost, as he did in their first fight. Groves says he spent too much time on promotional work, looking past Froch toward his would-be championship reign, and he says Eubank is falling into the same trap.

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Hitting the London Premier of Black Panther tomorrow night. Guna be epic @danielkaluuya1

— Chris Eubank Jr (@ChrisEubankJr) February 7, 2018

Could be. Eubank is also training under his father, former two-time WBO champ Chris Eubank Sr., while Groves is training under Shane McGuigan. The British press has been on McGuigan’s case after a string of recent losses, which saw both Carl Frampton and David Haye leave his camp. Groves seems to be happy with McGuigan’s no-nonsense approach, though.

Let’s fade the somewhat unproven favorite for a small wager. Eubank's odds are already starting to dip, so get on board while the getting’s good.

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