On September 21 1991, Chris Eubank Sr. went to battle with Michael Watson in Tottenham, London. Michael Watson would never be the same again.
Ahead on points in the final round, it looked like Watson had the fight – but a devastating uppercut from a wild Eubank sent Watson soaring backwards and down onto the canvas.
The fight was stopped and Watson spent the next 40 days in a coma while doctors tried desperately to remove a blood clot from his brain.
Almost as if history was symmetrically repeated, Eubank’s son, Chris Eubank Jr., fought for the British middleweight title against Nick Blackwell last week.
At the time, Blackwell was the reigning British champion, but in a fight not too dissimilar to Jack Dempsey’s title shot against Jess Willard, Blackwell took a pummelling in almost every single round of the fight – leading Eubank Sr. to instruct his son to stop going for Blackwell’s head in fear of causing serious damage.
The fight was eventually stopped in the tenth when Blackwell was rushed to hospital with a bleed on the brain.
Though his condition seems to be stable, Blackwell remains in an induced coma.
In the days that followed the fight, both Chris Eubank Sr. and Jr. were interviewed by Channel Four editor Matt Frei who asked the pair a series of odd and unfair questions which could only have been answered controversially.
The short clip from the interview seems to be very rocky from the beginning as the eccentric former world champion, Chris Eubank Sr. confronts the interviewer, saying:
Your line of questioning isn’t conducive to a good interview. It’s not going anywhere. It’s unfair.
However the hardest part of the interview is when Frei asks Eubank Jr. whether he would rather Nick Blackwell was in perfect health or whether he’d rather hold onto his belt, to which Chris replied:
That’s, that’s not a fair question. I’m not going to answer that question. This is my career. This is my life. I’m in there to do a job. I don’t wish any harm on anybody outside of the ring and I wish him a full recovery.
You can watch the clip below:
Boxing is a sport which has been plagued by controversy, criticism, and condemnation for the entirety of its existence.
At the end of the day it is two men or women using all of their will, determination, strength, and power to beat their opponents using only their fists.
Manny Pacquiao once said:
Boxing is a sport. We allow each other to hit each other, but I’m not treating my opponent like my enemy. We’re doing a job to entertain people.
I don’t think I could ever have said it any better.
We continue to wish Nick Blackwell a quick and thorough recovery.
Joseph Loftus is a Gold Standard NCTJ journalist with four years experience working for international and regional press.
As well as working for UNILAD and LADbible, Joseph has worked as Liverpool Correspondent for Unsigned & Independent Magazine, as well as stints with the Liverpool Echo and Warrington Guardian.