Conor Benn is confident of adding what he believes to be a long overdue win in the decades-long family rivalry with the Eubanks.
The second-generation contender from Ilford, Essex takes a major risk in attempting to accomplish that feat, moving up more than a full weight division to challenge Chris Eubank Jr. Their catchweight bout at a maximum contract limit of 157 pounds headlines a DAZN Pay-Per-View on October 8 from The O2 in London. It comes 29 years almost to the day of the October 1993 rematch that saw Benn’s father, Nigel and Chris Eubank Sr. fight to a draw in their WBC/WBO super middleweight title unification bout.
“The last fight ended in a draw. We all know how that fight really went and who should have really won,” the younger Benn noted while joined by Eubank Jr. during a recent appearance on Good Morning Britain. “That’s why it’s only right that I get this victory.”
Eubank Sr. stopped the elder Benn in the ninth round of their November 1990 clash to win the WBO middleweight title and begin a rivalry that has revived with the next generation now both established pros.
Benn (21-0, 14KOs) is coming up more than a full division from welterweight, where the 26-year-old rising contender is already considered to be undersized. The same was often said of his more famous father, who still managed to capture titles at middleweight and super middleweight while—along with Eubank Sr.—playing an integral role in the emerging 1990s UK boxing scene. The younger Benn has never weighed more than 148 ½ pounds as a pro and has consistently weighed under the welterweight limit in each of his last seven starts.
Eubank Jr. (32-2, 23KOs) is the bigger fighter and the more experienced of the fighting sons, though will have to come down to a career lightest weight. He has never weighed lighter than 158 ¼ pounds and has previously admitted that he will likely be at 60 percent of his best between the contract limit and the rehydration clause for their same day weigh-in. The 33-year-old from Brighton has leaned into that belief, even sporting a “60% Baby” t-shirt during his recent press tour while frequently posting videos of his indulging in fast food and desserts during training camp.
It never takes much for the younger Benn to be at edge, as he is both annoyed by Eubank’s antics and of the belief that he is the only one of the two who lives the life of a committed boxer.
“I’m coming up. I’ll be one hundred percent,” insists Benn, who knocked out Chris van Heerden in his most recent start also at The O2 in April. “I’m a dedicated professional athlete. I’m not ramming burgers down my throat, or portraying that image, anyway.
“I’m here working and I’ll be one hundred percent on the night.”
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox