Eddie Hearn revealed he had a disagreement with Conor McGregor over Gary Cully’s Dublin fight.
‘The Notorious’ questioned Matchroom’s opponent selection for the talented lightweight after ‘The Diva’ suffered an unfortunate defeat on the undercard of Katie Taylor’s loss to Chantelle Cameron.
The former UFC world champion and Crumlin boxing amateur wondered why the big punching Mexican was brought in on what was meant to the Kildare fighters Irish coming out party.
The Matchroom boss believes there is an air of hypocrisy to such comments made in hindsight and points out Cully was favourite going into the fight and that he would also be criticized for taking a safety-first approach.
Speaking on The MMA Hour, Hearn said to host Ariel Helwani: “I just think that the hypocrisy of boxing is unbelievable. Everybody moans that the fights aren’t tough enough and everybody moans that the challenges aren’t big enough and then when a fighter gets beat it’s like ‘he shouldn’t have taken that fight’.
“It’s like when (Anthony Joshua) fought Usyk. If you want to keep him safe and avoid dangerous fights he should have vacated the belts. If you’re in the sport for legacy and if you’re a competitor this is what happens.
“The amount of people that said to me and Conor was one of them after the fight ‘why did you put Gary Cully in with that guy’. That guy has lost three of the last four.
“I had a bit of a row – a friendly row with Conor , because he said that. You’ve got to beat kids like that. Tyrone McKenna beat him, Sandor Martin beat him. You are talking about Gary Cully being a world-class lightweight, you have to beat guys like that. He would have beaten him if he would have boxed smart, but it was a devastating defeat and he’s going to learn a lot from that.”
Regardless of the outcome of the May 20 fight, Hearn remains confident the Kildare fighter will be a success.
“In my opinion, Gary can still be a world champion,” Hearn told Irish-boxing.com.
“I’m disappointed for Gary, I really am but he can come back, he’s young enough and he is good enough which is the most important thing.”
The Essex fight maker was also at pains to point out that Mexican Felix Jr didn’t expose the Irish champion, stressing the defeat came from something as simple as getting caught by a good shot.
“These things happen, he got caught by a decent fighter who can punch. It was also early in the round, there were two and a half mins on the clock when the knockdown came. I think the corner did the right thing by throwing the towel in.”