George Groves vs Callum Smith

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George Groves vs Callum Smith
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Friday, September 28, 2018
King Abdullah Sports City, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Rounds Scheduled: 
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Titles at Stake: 
WBA (Super) Super Middleweight World Title (Groves's 3rd defence). World Boxing Super Series, Final


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Champion97's picture

Awesome that this fight is happening!
If an injury happens, it happens, it is life, it is one of those things, and it isn't ideal to have delays, for more reasons than some people realise, it unavoidably affects the setup and structure of a tournament when the most important fight in the competition is in jeopardy, but it would be a crying shame if the these issues were enough to ruin what has been built by the previous stages of the tournament. The truth is, I think, that if two finalists, who have both earned the opportunity to be in the final, don't fight, and a postponement turns into a cancellation, there is and was no point in even having a tournament, the purpose is defeated, and the whole thing becomes a waste of time, basically. It is good that the delay from Groves's injury hasn't nullified the fight, it is a great, great match up, boxing fans have wanted to see Groves vs Smith for years, it might be the most popular fight at 168, definitely is within the UK fanbase, they both won in the quarterfinals, they both won in the semifinals, they want to fight each other, this fight is important, so let's appreciate the fact that we are going to see it afterall.

Champion97's picture


This is a 50/50 fight, a brilliant fight!, and a fight which could determine the best super middleweight in the world.

Groves is the better boxer, he is a very aware, very focused, controlled boxer, who knows he doesn't hold up against power, has one of the best jabs in boxing, is a puncher, knows how to do damage, is a brilliant defensive fighter, has a lot of heart, has experience, and is still not an old fighter despite having some miles on the clock.

Smith is the better fighter, he is a very versatile offensive fighter, he is very big for the weight, very strong, granite chin, 12 round engine, can punch. Smith is not the best defensive fighter, but when he takes punches, he applies pressure, makes opponents work, and as he gets closer, he unleashes attacks with power, accuracy, is a brilliant body puncher.

Groves is the more proven fighter, he has a good resume, wins over Chris Eubank Jr, Fedor Chudinov, Martin Murray, James DeGale, whilst Smith has wins over Erik Skoglund, Rocky Fielding, good wins, but fewer good wins than Groves, and maybe not against the same level of opponent, although it is interesting, because you could argue Fielding, Skoglund are every bit as good as Murray, Eubank, Chudinov, and even maybe DeGale, but Groves has beaten other names as well that Smith hasn't beaten as good as, and there are just more names, more opponents there, and the consensus is that Fielding and Skoglund aren't as good as the best fighters Groves has beat.

Smith is the fresher fighter, and he is 2 years younger than Groves, he is bigger and stronger as well, about 8 centimetres taller, but Groves as well, a big super middleweight, but Smith is as big as super middleweights come, he does very well to make 168, and he will probably move up to 175 at some stage.

Smith is much more resistant to punches, there is no comparison, which means he can afford to take more risks. Groves is the much better defensive boxer, better reflexes, reactions, quicker instincts, and I think at this point, because Groves has learned first hand about what to do when you are hurt, he might have far, far more survival knowledge, survival skill if he is hurt than Smith if he does get hurt, because the right shot, with enough power, accuracy, method, which catches a fighter when they don't see it coming, can hurt any human fighter.

Groves doesn't have weak stamina, the evidence is his consistency for 12 rounds against Murray and Eubank, his stamina has improved if anything, but he gassed in earlier fights, because he was not controlled, he used to work unnecessarily hard, chased a knockout that wasn't coming, against an opponent who is confident, has a good chin, being impatient, being reckless, does not make you more dangerous. Groves doesn't have great stamina, but has the gas tank to do 12 rounds at a decent pace. It is one thing to talk about sparring the rounds, stamina wise, but if you fight an opponent who pressures you, makes you move, makes you exchange and just to exert yourself at a higher pace than you would be wise to, you will blow a gasket sooner or later. Eubank Jr is not a big super middleweight, Smith is far physically stronger than Eubank, and he is better at walking opponents down, cutting the ring off, he is a better pressure fighter, it will be more taxing for Groves in the early rounds against Smith than against Eubank.

If Groves can hurt Smith early, make him ease off, he would have a great chance of winning this fight, because if Smith isn't relentless, Groves can control the pace more, gas out later, but if Smith is relentless, if Groves can't hurt him for 4 or 5 rounds, and can't drop when he does hurt him (or maybe he simply doesn't hirt him at all), then Groves will blow a gasket.

I think Groves will put a shift in for 6 rounds, he might hurt Smith if Smith walks into one, but if that happens, I don't think Groves can finish him, I think he is too big, has too much desire, his recovery is too good. I think Groves will look more dominant for 2 one sided opening rounds than against Eubank, but because he will be being made to work harder than within his game plan. I think Smith will just pressure Groves, and soak up punches for 6 rounds, he might be aggressive enough trouble Groves to make a round close, but he could be 60-54 down after 6. I think after 6, Groves will be gassed, and in rounds 7, 8, 9, it will go more and more in Smith's favour, a bit like Hurd vs Trout. I think Smith will physically wear down and beat the fight out of Groves, and in I think round 11, he will stop him.

SalTnutZ1's picture

Who do you have winning this? I hope the winner faces Uzi or DeGale next. I'd like to see that division unified at some point, as most of its champions and contenders are on the younger side. I only worry that guys like Ramirez and Benavidez bounce soon to Light Heavy, bringing a lot of young talent with them. 168 could have a lot of buzz with the right match ups.

Champion97's picture

Smith, you?

Yeah me too, awesome potential fights!
Meh don't worry, some great talents at 160 are just as likely to bounce up to 168, all divisions are full of good fights, some stand out, but no I think there are great fighters in every division.

SalTnutZ1's picture

I think time, and wear and tear could definitely catch up to Groves. I say toss up right now. Would have to see them both at weigh ins to see how they look.

I'm thinking we see at least 1 Charlo at Super Middle at some point, same with Hurd and Munguia. There are so many great fighters and fights to be had from 154-168, the next few years are going to get very interesting!

Champion97's picture

I personally, won't read anything into that, I expect them both to look bad at the weigh in, and rehydrate well in time for the fight, just like in previous fights.

I'm not sure I agree to be honest, I'm not really in favour of fighters moving up in weight, definitely not more than two moves up, I don't think Hurd will ever be at 168, but that's just my opinion, and whichever way you look at it, the top 5 in every division is the top 5 in every division, and whenever it seems like a division is dead, look what happens, last year, there was nothing at 140 for Crawford, now, it might be more competitive than 147, sa,e at 160, look at it now, 168, it is just tht Uzcategui, Zeuge, Ramirez, don't get the credit they deserve.

SalTnutZ1's picture

I've just seen so many people recently come in burnt from their cuts, in both Boxing and Till in the UFC, and have that hurt them come fight night, so I at least keep an eye on it, though I agree, I don't think this should be a huge concern for these two. This fight is potentially so close in my eyes, that little things like that could sway my prediction when we add it.

I'm not saying I think they all should move up, I'm just predicting that they will. I think Munguia will end up there for sure, the other two seem like they would at least entertain it, though Middleweight I believe is best for Charlo and Hurd.

I agree on how divisions can shift. This is a great time for boxing. Glad to see so many young, talented fights who can promote their fights, and then make their fights exciting. And glad to see more TV networks/media entities getting creative to get more fights to the masses!

Champion97's picture


Carl Froch - Groves
Hatton gym
Groves: 5
Smith: 3
Ensley Bingham - Groves
Maurice Coore - Groves
Ben Sheedy - Groves
Brendan Loughlane - Groves
Lawrence Okolie - Smith
Richard Dwyer - Smith
Rocky Fielding - Groves

Groves: 11
Smith: 5