- Who: Liam Smith vs. Chris Eubank Jr.
- Date: Saturday, September 2, 2023
- Time: 1 p.m. ET
- Location: AO Arena in Manchester, England
- How to Watch: ESPN+
A high-stakes middleweight boxing matchup is scheduled for Saturday, September 2, in Manchester, England, when Liam Smith and Chris Eubank, Jr. run back their January fight. Smith, who moved up from the junior middleweight limit of 154 pounds to face Eubank, the former WBA interim middleweight champ, at 160 pounds, scored a fourth-round TKO win in that contest. The stoppage ended Eubank’s six-fight winning streak and gave Smith his fourth consecutive win, all of which have come by TKO. Below, we look at the betting breakdown for the middleweight bout between Smith and Eubank.
Liam Smith (33-3-1 with 20 knockouts) is perhaps best known for his 2016 knockout loss to Canelo Alvarez. Smith was 23-0-1 at the time of that fight. Since his loss to Alvarez, Smith has gone 10-2. with his only setbacks coming in title fights to Jaime Munguia and Magomed Kurbanov. He is currently rated at No. 2 in the junior middleweight division and No. 4 at middleweight, according to The Ring.
Chris Eubank Jr. (32-3 with 23 KOs) was the No. 5 rated middleweight ahead of his loss to Smith. He is currently outside the top 10, as Smith’s win was a significant upset. Eubank was a -280 betting favorite against Smith. The way that first fight played out has shifted the betting odds considerably for the rematch.
Liam Smith vs. Chris Eubank Jr. 2 betting picks
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Liam Smith vs. Chris Eubank Jr. 2 betting breakdown
When these two first faced off, there were boxing pundits who thought that Eubank being a -280 favorite was too low. Those bettors who thought picking Eubank was easy money were left stunned when Smith knocked down Eubank twice in the fourth round to get the TKO win. The loss marked the first time Eubank had been stopped in his career.
Smith had the perfect game plan for the first fight, and I don’t expect to see significant adjustments from his team ahead of the rematch. Smith fought well defensively. He utilized a high guard and a crouch, making it difficult for Eubank to score with his jab. Smith was also quick to react and come back with powerful counters. That approach allowed him to score the knockdowns he needed to win the fight via TKO. Look for more of the same from Smith.
As for Eubank, it’s hard to tell if he was overconfident or misjudged his foe. Whatever the case, he lost devastatingly, and his pride will have him looking to get even with Smith. Eubank needs to be more selective with his jabs, raise his guard and move out of range quickly after throwing his punches. He’ll also need to clinch more when Smith steps in to counter. Allowing his foe opportunities to land with power won’t benefit Eubank.
Betting value for Liam Smith vs. Chris Eubank Jr. 2
The betting odds in this fight are much closer than they were in the first meeting between Smith and Eubank, which indicates that the oddsmakers did not see the outcome of the first fight as a fluke. If one thinks Eubank can shore up his defense and rack up points via his jab, then there is betting value in picking Eubank to win. If one leans in that direction, the bet to make on Eubank is likely to win via decision.
As for Smith, even though he is the betting favorite, there is still some value in picking him to win, especially if one picks a prop bet on his manner of victory. The best bet is to pick Smith to win, which we will discuss below.
Best Bets for Liam Smith vs. Chris Eubank Jr. 2
The betting pick for Smith vs. Eubank 2 is for Smith to pick up the victory again. His style is perfect for doing so. He’s patient, intelligent, and willing to absorb Eubank’s jabs, so he can slip inside and get the counter. Eubank will be more defensively sound in this fight, but at some point in the second half of the battle, the power shots from Smith will take their toll, and he will score the knockout win. With that, the best bet is Liam Smith to win via KO after the sixth round.
Best bet for Liam Smith vs. Chris Eubank 2: Liam Smith to win via knockout.
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