By Edward Chaykovsky
Chris Eubank Sr., father and trainer of once-beaten Chris Eubank Jr., believes his son is fully capable of crossing over to mixed martial arts.
The connection between boxing and mixed martial arts has been on display in the last twelve months, with headlines being dominated by a fantasy fight between retired former five division world champion Floyd Mayweather Jr. and UFC superstar Conor McGregor.
Mayweather and McGregor are very interested in fighting each other in a boxing match, but McGregor's exclusive contract with the UFC will likely prevent that from happening.
Eubank Sr. believes his son could could make a successful transition to the UFC and score knockouts over their very best.
“There is a guy called Conor McGregor, who is talking the talk and claiming he can deal with my guy Mayweather, who is the grand master when it comes to hitting and not being hit. No chance McGregor,” Eubank told the BBC.
“Also, let me tell you, if anyone is going to make a crossover into UFC, it is this man here (referring to his son) because he can do it. I was aware that he would probably get into fights because of my name when he was growing up, so at the age of nine, I had him take lessons in jiu-jitsu and grappling.
“Only about a year ago, I was in his flat and he was watching UFC. I said ‘do you like this stuff’. He said ‘yeah I always watch it. When you learn something as a child, it stays with you. You learn best when you are eight, nine, ten and 11. Just imagine him crossing over and putting to sleep guys like McGregor.”
Eubank Jr. himself discussed the topic and while he confirms that he's not looking to make a move to the UFC any time soon - he also feels confident of his ability to tackle the world of MMA.
"I’ve got many goals and achievements I’m working towards in boxing, but I did MMA, I did grappling, all types of jiu-jitsu for a while as a kid,” Eubank Jr. said.
“I could easily transition if I wanted to and the only thing I would have to learn is how to kick as I’ve never had to do that. If you’re talking about boxing one-on-one, there’s no contest (against McGregor). You can’t compare a boxer and a UFC fighter. In the Octagon of course, then it’s a different story.”