Ricky Hatton has had his say on the ‘elbow theory’ from Liam Smith’s recent victory over Chris Eubank Jr.
Liverpool’s Smith put an end to the legends surrounding Eubank’s punch resistance when he stopped him early in their domestic middleweight clash.
What started as a slow motion replay doing the rounds online has developed into quite the news story.
Smith’s shock 4th round stoppage of Eubank Jr appears to include an elbow connecting to the side of the head, although given the nature of the knockout – a flurry of powerful uppercuts and hooks – it’s impossible to tell how much, if any, damage that contact caused.
Eubank’s team may think there’s something in it, though, with Roy Jones Jr alluding to it in an Instagram post before his promoter, Kalle Sauerland, stating to Sky Sports that they were considering an appeal to the board.
It’s important to note that Eubank himself hasn’t given his thoughts on the matter, and one former fighter believes it should stay that way. Ricky Hatton told BBTV Boxing that it was all part of the game.
“I didn’t think it was an elbow, I think it was one of them punches sometimes. I remember when I fought a lad called Stephen Smith and I got him on the ropes and I actually threw a punch, and the punch landed and the elbow came through after it. Listen, it’s the game you’re in.”
“I can’t see anything coming of that to be honest. It’s not a tickling contest, you know what I mean? It’s boxing. If the punch has gone in and an elbow’s come through and it’s not deliberate or anything like that… I’d much rather Chris turn round and go ‘better man won.’
He’s got to take it on the chin, accept it, and move forward. I can’t for the life of me see him moaning about an elbow. It happens to everybody – he got caught, he got knocked out. Well done, Liam. Let’s move on.”
Eubank has a rematch clause that he’s free to activate, and it’s expected he will do so to try and avenge the defeat, elbow or otherwise.
As for Liam Smith, he has laughed off any claims that he played dirty, and invited his opponent to run it back so he can prove it.