Boxing isn’t always considered a family sport, but sometimes it’s just in the blood.
This weekend, one of British boxings biggest prospects Conor Benn continues his rise up the levels as he takes on Chris Van Heerden. Benn is the son of a Boxing legend, and here is a list of five boxers who want to replicate their parents success.
First up is the man who returns this weekend. Conor’s father, Nigel was one of the most fearsome punchers in British boxing. Nigel was a two time world champion in a career that spanned nine years. Nigel was always in exciting fights, and his personal rivalry with Chris Eubank is one of the most well known rivalries in boxing history.
In 2016, Nigel’s son, Conor was announced as Matchroom’s big signing, as he debuted on the undercard of Anthony Joshua vs Dominic Breazeale. Conor had limited amateur experience, with many claiming he’s only where he is because of his Dad. Conor shares a similar fighting style to his Dad which makes him highly entertaining to watch. Conor has shut up his critics as he has progressed to be one of the best prospects in Britain. Conor’s last fight seen him produce a knockout of the year contender over the seasoned Chris Algieri in December 2021, will we see an equally spectacular KO this weekend against Chris Van Heerden?
— Matchroom Boxing (@MatchroomBoxing) December 11, 2021
Chris Eubank Jr
Nigel Benn’s main rival Chris Eubank has also seen his son step through the ropes. Eubank was known for his solid chin, only being stopped once in a career that spanned 13 years, and that stoppage was on doctors orders, as he picked up grotesque swelling rendering his left eye completely shut in his final fight with Carl Thompson.
Chris Eubank Jr debuted in 2011, where he produced a fourth round stoppage over Kiril Psonko. Eubank Jr had his father in his corner for a large portion of his career. By 2014, Eubank Jr reached 18-0, however, he was dealt his first loss of his career as he lost a razor thin split decision to Billy Joe Saunders. Eubank Jr rebuilt from this, as he added big names like Spike O’Sullivan and Nick Blackwell to his record, picking up the British title in the process.
2018 saw Eubank Jr defeated again, this time in a World title challenge against George Groves in the World Boxing Super Series semi-final. Once again, Eubank Jr rebuilt, and has recently come off the back of a big win over domestic rival Liam Williams.
Muhammad Ali is probably the most famous name in boxing history. A true warrior who changed the landscape of boxing. Ali held world honours three times in a legendary 21 year career.
In 1999, the Ali legacy was continued, as Muhammad’s daughter, Laila made her professional debut. Ali went on a knockout streak of nine fights until Kendra Lenhart took her a full six rounds in her tenth fight.
In 2005, Ali became the second woman to ever win a WBC world title as she knocked out bitter rival Erin Toughill on the undercard of Mike Tyson vs Kevin McBride.
In 2007, Ali announced her retirement, following her win over Gwendolyn O’Neil in South Africa. Ali retired undefeated with a record of 24-0.
Julio Cesar Chavez Jr
The legendary Julio Cesar Chavez is considered one of the greatest of all time. In a career that spanned 25 years, Chavez won six world titles in three different weight divisions, even going on a 90 fight undefeated streak. Chavez ended his career in 2005 with a record of 107-6-2.
In 2003, Chavez saw his son enter the professional ring. Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. Chavez Jr built up a 43 fight undefeated streak, before winning his first world title in 2011, defeating Sebastian Zbik for the WBC title.
One year later, Chavez Jr was found out at the highest level, as he was convincingly defeated by Sergio Martinez. Chavez never held world honours again, but has competed with big names since.
In 2017, Chavez Jr fought Canelo Alvarez, and came under fire for his incredibly negative performance. Eddie Hearn offered Chavez Jr a lifeline in 2019, as he gave him a big fight with Daniel Jacobs. Chavez Jr missed weight, then went on to quit in the corner after five rounds with his father in attendance.
Chavez Jr hit the headlines again in 2021, as he found himself on the end of a professional loss to UFC star Anderson Silva.
One of British boxings most recognisable names, Ricky Hatton was a fan favourite throughout his 15 year career. Hatton’s crowning night against Kostya Tszyu in 2005 is one of the most memorable nights in British boxing. Also, his following of around 20,000 who took over Las Vegas for his bout with Floyd Mayweather in 2007 just showed how popular Hatton was.
In 2020, Matchroom Boxing announced the signing of Campbell Hatton. Campbell’s pro debut came on the undercard of Alexander Povetkin vs Dillian Whyte 2 in Gibraltar. Campbell defeated Jesus Ruiz on points, although looking fatigued at the end.
Campbell continued his rise, but was considered lucky when he was awarded the victory over Sonni Martinez in his fourth fight. Campbell battled back against his critics, producing knockouts in both fights that followed.
Campbell’s seventh fight takes place this weekend in his hometown of Manchester, as he takes on Lee Glover on the undercard of Benn vs Van Heerden.