We are about three weeks away from one of the sport’s biggest events, as IBF middleweight champion Daniel “Miracle Man” Jacobs will face off against WBA, WBC, and lineal champion Canelo Alvarez on May 4th in Las Vegas. The 12-round unification will be held inside of the T-Mobile Arena and will be streamed on DAZN.
Jacobs has been through much in his career, from overcoming defeats in the ring to cancer outside of it. During a recent workout he discussed several key factors heading into the biggest fight of his career.
“This is my opportunity to prove what I have been saying, that I am the best middleweight in the world,” said Jacobs “Doing the impossible is not new to me. Ten years ago, I was in a wheelchair in the hospital. Fast forward to now and I’m fighting for middleweight supremacy. You can’t make this story up, and I feel like this is my destiny.”
It’s well-known within the boxing community that Jacobs was diagnosed with cancer, yet it’s an obstacle he was able to get past. He reflects back on those days with truthfulness.
“I’ve looked death in the eyes,” he stated. “It happened when I was in the hospital bed with my back to the wall after doctors told me that I had cancer and would never box again. I’ve been through the toughest of all mental battles. I see it and feel it. Canelo hasn’t faced and beaten an opponent like cancer, but I have, so to me I am already a victor.”
Canelo is the biggest star in the sport, one of the only few pay per view attractions left after Floyd Mayweather’s retirement. Jacobs recognizes as much, but feels this is his time to shine.
“Canelo is a true champion with superstar status who has fought so many great fighters, so to step in the ring with him is an honor for me,” said Jacobs. “But aside from that, my legacy is on the line here. I have so much to gain from this fight, and I look forward to doing that and giving the fans a great show. I want to be a Hall of Famer one day, and you only achieve that by fighting the best like Canelo.”
Jacobs is no stranger to big fights and even tangled with Canelo’s rival Gennady Golovkin a few years ago, losing a competitive decision.
But he was unsure whether or not this dream fight with Alvarez would really come off.
“I was surprised in a way when the fight was getting close, and I was still worried until the contracts were signed,” he stated. “I didn’t believe that I would get the fight even when we were negotiating because anything can happen in boxing. Sometimes you hear things. You hear people say that Canelo doesn’t want to fight the best guys out there. But I was confident in my team getting it done, and I take my hat off to Canelo and his team for taking the fight. Now it’s time to put on something great for the fans.”
Jacobs, a Brooklyn fighter, is old school and it appears he has been in the lab a bit studying Canelo for this specific assignment.
“To prepare for a fight, you have to study film and look at flaws and things you can exploit, but I’ve been studying Canelo for all of my career as I was a fan of him and still am,” Jacobs said. “I know his style and I don’t need to watch his fights with Golovkin and compare them to my fight with Golovkin as every fighter is different and every fight is different. For me, it’s all about adjusting on the night because I can plan for the Canelo that fought GGG and he can be a completely different style on the night. GGG is not as fast as me and I’m bigger. I’m sharper.”
What’s best about Jacobs is that he can go into a fight of this level without having to be disrespectful at all. It’s all about the sportsmanship.
“We don’t need to talk trash,” said Jacobs. “That’s not what I am about, and I don’t think he is either. I’ve done it before with some opposition because if it’s in them and if you want to be about it, I can be about it. Trust me. But truly I am a person who likes to show respect and I want the fans to see that because as fighters, we can have negative things placed on us from the past. I want to be a stand-up guy that represents the sport because that’s what we are doing; we are ambassadors for boxing and at the elite level.”
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