Chris Eubank Jr. in search of the world title has Zhanibek Alimkhanuly and Liam Smith on the horizon, while the Briton still does not rule out the long-sought fight against Gennady Golovkin, says BOXXER promoter Ben Shalom.
Eubank Jr., who defeated Liam Williams by unanimous decision in February, was linked to a possible fight with Kel Brook after the Sheffield man’s victory over Amir Khan, just because Brook’s retirement announcement officially cut off talks over the weekend.
Shalom believes the outcome served as the right move for both men, and is now convinced that Eubank Jr. is ready to win the title in the near future.
“We would like Zhanibek [Alimkhanuly] potentially fight, ”Shalom he told Sky Sports. “He is fighting Danny Dignum for the world title in May. We are talking to Top Rank about that fight.
“Eubank Jr. wants a world title and we believe that is the easiest option for him now. We also think Liam Smith is a good fight and I think he will reduce himself to the two of them.
“I’d love to see him fight for the world title, I think we can make that happen.”
Former world champion Liam Smith has cemented his position in the WBO rankings by winning the 10th round of the break over Jessie Vargas at Madison Square Garden.
But Golovkin remains a favored opponent for Eubanka Jr., and the Kazakh star could be forced to reconsider his plans for the rest of the year after the trilogy fight with Saul ‘Canel’ Alvarez was called into question, or at least on hold, after the Mexican’s defeat by Dmitry Bivol.
“It will be interesting to see what happens to the Canelo-Golovkin fight, because Golovkin was the fight that Chris really wanted and I think it’s a great fight for Chris,” Shalom added.
“Golovkin was waiting for that rematch with Canelo and if Canelo is now going to fight the Buffalo in a rematch, then CEJ-GGG could become more likely. I would love to see him fight for world titles, be it Golovkin, Zhanibek, Lara – That’s what you should strive for.
“Chris Eubank Jr. will not give in to anyone and has never given in to anyone. He wants world titles and that has always been an ambition. Who wouldn’t want a big fight with Kelly Brook? Of course Eubank wanted that, but at the same time his ambitions are world titles and his ambition are the biggest names.
“We believe he will win the world title very soon and we think that is the right path for him. It was right for Kella to retire and it is also right of Chris to now fight the best active fighters and go for the titles.”
How close was the fight with Brook?
Mirni Brook noted his 40-win career over the weekend, as he admitted that “there is no dark feeling in me anymore” thanks to the victory over Khan, his respect for which he emphasized after a decade-long quarrel between the couple.
Although Eubank Jr. proved tempting, retirement always seemed like the path Brook would take.
“There was little interest in fighting Eubank Jr. by him, but when the commercial deals dragged on,” Shalom said. “We believed it was an amazing option to retire.
“If it had gone in the opposite direction against Khan, it might have been different, but after the career he had and the ability to end on such a night, it was definitely the right decision.
“When we talked and decided that Eubank was not the right option and that retirement was the best option, I think everyone felt comfortable with that decision.
“It’s not about weight, I think we’ve overweight. The economy of the fight has made it harder. The longer Kell was out of the gym, the more he could see things with a clearer head. Kell was always leaning towards retirement, it took something extremely special to pull him back . “