In this video interview with Chris Eubank Sr, the former fighter shares his thoughts on why it’s important the boxing community looks after its fighters who are no longer in the sport and struggling from the damage they received during their careers. Eubank says he wants to start a foundation to take care of fighters and believes sanctioning bodies to pay a percentage of their fees into a program like this.
“All you boxing fans out there, you are looking at fighters and they are slurring and they are forgetful. And a lot of them end up falling away from their families. It’s a tragic sport. Even when you win, even when you become a champion it’s tragic because you become a standard-bearer, where people are looking up to you. Can you handle that responsibility? It’s a great responsibility. And as said by Spider-Man, ‘with great power comes great responsibility’ and it is tough.
“Anyone who signs up to be a fighter, effectively you sign up to a life of solitary confinement. You are alone, ‘cause people are following, they’re watching what you do. It’s a lonely life, it’s tough. It’s great if you can embrace it. But it’s tough. Today guys are looking at money, they’re looking at bling...that has a sad ending. A beautiful ending is one where we become mentors, we become servers of the community...”
On fighters trying to come back to boxing long after retiring:
“Tragically when a fighter comes back, with the exception of our guy Floyd, they’re coming back for money, they’re going back to the well, which is why I’m building a foundation to look after fighters so they don’t have to come to that well — to do what, to get more damage? My brother has dementia, he’s 57 years old. What did that? That’s supposed to happen maybe when you’re 86. At 57, it’s boxing. Boxing is dangerous but it’s beautiful.
“I would like to put other there that perhaps organizations should give a percentage to a foundation that looks after fighters who because of our pride, we suffer in silence, we don’t ask for help. Mental health is an issue with us. Getting hit is dangerous is which again why we all admire Mr. Floyd Mayweather Jr...but not everybody is blessed with that kind of skill set. So we have a duty to have these organizations, the WBC, the WBA, the IBF, the WBO, the IBO, to perhaps give a percentage of their fees to a foundation that looks after fighters.
“We have to find these men who are now destitute. We have to find these men who are now in trouble, who are suffering in silence. So when you hear about these men making a comeback, they are in desperate need. So let’s not play this game of foolery...
“These managers, these promoters, even trainers, look after your fighter. We need you to look after us because we’re not capable. We can do what you can’t do, which is fight, but we can’t do what you can do, we can’t account, we can’t budget, we can’t go on reading doing the normal things. We’re not normal. We are abnormal. It’s not about education, it’s about the education of the art which about movement and grit and fortitude...so we need your help because we didn’t do the normal thing, academics.
“Fighters are kind of black and white, do or die, we don’t do the grey. So we need your help and I’m the first person to be speaking about this which is so obvious.”