“I haven’t seen much of him, but I’m sure I would have. He had enough losses on his record and I don’t fall for his bullshit,” Groves said. “Back then, a lot of people got annoyed by his gimmicks and fought with emotion. I wouldn’t do that.
“The losses to Steve Collins are the only fights I have seen where Collins won every minute of every round. That was his gameplan. Whether his dad came away from that and thought ‘that’s how it’s got to be’, I don’t know because his dad never fought like that… He was about posturing, being heavy-handed. He probably wasn’t much of a trainer.”
Groves, who has beaten James DeGale and fought Carl Froch twice, reflected that Eubank senior comes from “a different era”. He continued, “Maybe he wouldn’t have survived in this era, maybe he would have got beat. Maybe people would have seen through him because in this era, you have to step up.
“His son had to step up because in this era, you can’t get away with too many hand-picked opponents.”
Groves has outwitted Senior before. When he was about to fight James DeGale in 2011, Eubank advised against him following the gameplan he was plotting. From sparring Junior, Senior was aware of Groves’ plan. “His dad told me how to beat James DeGale. He said I’ve got to win every second of every round,” George recalled. “I was going to beat him on the back foot. I did that and he texted me to say well done.
“His dad conceded to me that he was a little bit in awe of me and Adam Booth.”
Groves’ fight is Eubank Junior, they box their World Boxing Super Series semi-final at the Manchester Arena on Saturday (February 17). But the WBA champion insists he is not emotionally engaged with Chris Eubank Jr.
“He craves a big fight, he craves the attention,” George said. “He wants to step out of his dad’s shadow.”
“He says he’s my biggest fight yet, he’s not,” he concluded. “He’s trying to make this into a rivalry. This isn’t a rivalry.”
For George Groves, this is just a fight.