‘He lost faith in me’ – Roy Jones Jr opens up on Chris Eubank Jr split and explains how Conor Benn weight cut impacted Liam Smith knockout

Roy Jones Jr has claimed that Chris Eubank Jr ‘lost faith’ in him, hence their recent split.

The American boxing legend, now a trainer, started coaching Eubank Jr in 2020.

Eubank Jr has now split from Jones Jr


Eubank Jr has now split from Jones JrCredit: chriseubankjr.com
Smith vs Eubank Jr II will be live on talkSPORT on Saturday night


Smith vs Eubank Jr II will be live on talkSPORT on Saturday nightCredit: LAWRENCE LUSTIG/BOXXER

The pair worked together for successful fights against Marcus Morrison, Wanik Awdijan and Liam Williams, before things all came crashing down against Liam Smith in January.

Eubank Jr was knocked out for the first time in his career, and will now rematch Smith on Saturday night, live on talkSPORT.

This time though, he will do so with Brian ‘BoMac’ McIntyre in his corner, having split with Jones Jr.

Jones Jr told Sporting Post: “I think complacency was a factor going into that fight.

Tyson Fury hilariously mocks Oleksandr Usyk over Daniel Dubois low blow controversy
Canelo is the only man to KO Liam Smith and left him writhing in pain from brutal shot

“It affected his training completely because usually he would listen to what I’d tell him to do.

“But during that training camp there were several times where he’d question me, or if I’d tell him something, he’d beg to differ.

“When they start to question you they either don’t believe you, or they’re second guessing what you’re saying, so if you’re second guessing what i’m saying, you should go with someone you believe, so I’m glad he’s gone with BoMac.

“BoMac is fresh to him and maybe he can develop some faith in BoMac, because one day during training for the Smith fight, a sparring partner threw a headshot and Chris went to protect his body and tried to [dodge] the head shot off.

“I told him, ‘It’s better to protect the head shot than the body shot.’

“And he told me that he, ‘begged to differ’. 

“I’m the pound for pound greatest fighter of all time saying that, but I said, ‘Okay,’ because I’ve never seen Chris hurt and I’ve never seen him down, so you can’t argue with that.

“But when you start saying things like that, to me it means you’re losing confidence in what I’m telling you.”

Jones Jr continued: “I think he lost faith in me.

“I don’t why, but when he started questioning me, to me that’s an immediate sign you don’t believe what I’m telling you.

“All because you’ve not been knocked down before, you’re questioning what I’m saying.

“I don’t care if you’ve not been knocked down before, a shot to the body isn’t going to leave a cut on your stomach.

“Nobody will get cut from a body shot, but a head shot can leave you cut, so I was talking from experience, but when you question that, then it puts a little bit of a damper on things.

“But now you’ve been down, you can’t argue with me now. Because now you understand why I said it.

“Sometimes when you get complacent, people don’t heed advice. I think he thought Smith would be a little bit easier than it turned out to be.”

Last October, Eubank Jr had agreed to face Conor Benn at a 157lbs catchweight and was in the process of draining himself to make that limit when the fight was shockingly called off due to Benn recording two positive drugs tests.

Jones Jr feels Eubank Jr depleted himself while trying to fight Benn at 157lbs


Jones Jr feels Eubank Jr depleted himself while trying to fight Benn at 157lbs

Rather than give his body ample time to recover from this harsh weight cut, Eubank Jr quickly went into another camp and boxed Smith at 160lbs in January.

“The weight cut that Eubank went through for Conor Benn was very, very draining for him,” Jones Jr claimed.

“I don’t think it was the total weight cut that was the problem, but it was just the last few pounds.

“Because when Chris jumped into the ring with Smith, I thought his legs looked very unstable, so I was a bit worried about it, because of the way he took the last few pounds, to me, it wasn’t very good for him.

“I didn’t like the way he looked, he looked fine in camp up to that point.

“The last few pounds caused him a lot of trouble, he had not been down there in a while, but that fight never took place, so we don’t know how he would have performed.

“But sometimes you don’t look good and still do okay…

talkSPORT newsletter: Sign up and get the latest sports news delivered to your inbox
Man City fan who celebrated with Haaland is former world champion boxer

“He wasn’t necessarily hollow against Smith, but he had been through an extensive training camp for Benn and I think he didn’t get a chance to take a proper break between camps and I think that wore on him a little bit.

“And it wore on him a way that he could save himself for the fight, but maybe he saved himself a little too much.”