IBF super middleweight titlist James DeGale reportedly injured his right shoulder in the weeks leading up to his title unification fight with Badou Jack at the top of the year — an injury which will now force him to undergo surgery.
DeGale is expected to have an operation tomorrow on his right shoulder, specifically a diagnostic arthroscopy and ACJ stabilization procedure, which he firmly believes will allow for him to return to the ring by the end of the year, according to Sky Sports.
"I was very close to fighting with Callum Smith this summer," DeGale told The Mirror: We had agreed to fight on July 1 at The O2, but in the end he decided to go down the WBC route and will challenge for the vacant world title later this year.
"I'm confident I would have won the fight, even with the injury, but it would have been his best chance of beating me.”
DeGale has also recently been linked to a potential rematch with George Groves, who just won a world title, but DeGale says he still doesn’t believe Groves is deserving of a 50-50 split for that fight and says that any potential negotiations will be difficult.
"...I don't think he deserves a 50/50 split. Groves thinks he's bigger than he is, especially after his fights with Carl Froch.
"Negotiations will be difficult and the terms will have to be right for the fight to be made."
This kind of sentiment would lead one to believe that the much talked about rematch could be a long shot.