Roy Jones Jr has taken a subtle dig at Liam Smith ahead of his fight with Chris Eubank Jr, claiming Eubank is capable of beating Smith without his input.
Eubank has trained under the former four-weight world champion since 2021, and has picked up three comfortable victories since.
Despite Smith being a former world champion who enjoyed an impressive 2022, Jones told Sky Sports that his work with ‘Next Gen’ has been geared towards getting the 33-year-old ready for a fight with the likes of Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin.
“For Liam Williams or Liam Smith, Chris doesn’t need me to beat these guys because the fighting Chris Eubank can beat both of these guys.
“However, he doesn’t bring me in for these particular fighters, he brings me here to help him get better prepared for names like GGG [Golovkin] or Canelo”
“When you go with these guys, you can’t be the old Chris that just goes out and lets his hands go, you’ve got to be a tactician, you’ve got to have a little bit more knowledge behind what you’re doing.”
“He’s looking down the line at the bigger fights where he knows he’s going to need more than just blasting people out with combinations, that won’t work against these bigger guys, against Canelo or GGG.”
Jones’ words ring similar to comments made by Eubank shortly after the bout against Smith was announced, when he claimed he only needed to be operating at 50% to emerge victorious on January 21.
Despite the clear confidence on show from Jr and and his team, he goes into the fight as just a marginal bookmakers’ favourite and many in the boxing world are backing Smith to come out on top.
There’s also the matter of a rematch clause on Eubank’s side, which they have the option to activate if defeated.
The contest, which is Sky Sports’ first pay per view offering of the year, will take place at Eubank’s home weight of 160lbs, with Smith moving up from 154lb for the first time in his career.