On Saturday, November 11 at the Nassau Coliseum in New York, Daniel Jacobs put on a dominating performance against Luis Arias, earning himself his first 12-round decision win of his career.
The official scores from the three judges were 118-109, 119-108 and 120-107, all in favor of Jacobs. There was a lot of trash talk from Arias leading up to the fight, but ultimately, Jacobs had the last word as he maintained his composure and controlled the entire fight.
Jacobs was coming off of an eight-month layoff after being defeated by Gennady Golovkin in March earlier this year. Jacobs made it clear after the fight that he wants to stay active moving forward.
“All I wanna do is impress the fans, all I wanna do is be the people’s champion,” said Jacobs in speaking with HBO’s Max Kellerman after the fight. “I was lunging over a little bit, but [Arias is] a crafty guy.”
At the end of his interview with Kellerman, Jacobs added that he will be ringside for the December 16 fight in Montreal between WBO Middleweight titleholder Billy Joe Saunders and former IBF belt holder, David Lemieux.
As Daniel Jacobs looks to stay active in 2018, who should he face next?
Winner of Billy Joe Saunders vs. David Lemieux
A bout between Daniel Jacobs and the winner of Billy Joe Saunders (25-0, 12 KOs) vs. David Lemieux (38-3, 33 KOs) would give Jacobs the opportunity to become champion once again, fighting for the WBO Middleweight title.
Regardless of who wins the fight in Montreal, a fight against Jacobs following the clash in December would make for a very intriguing fight.
Both Saunders and Lemieux are stiff competition–a fight with the winner would be great test for Jacobs especially if he is eyeing the opportunity to fight either Gennady Golovkin or Canelo Alvarez.
Martin Murray (36-4, 17 KOs) has recently expressed his interest in a bout against Daniel Jacobs. Though Murray’s record is far from flawless, he is riding on a three-fight win streak since a 12-round decision loss to current WBA Super Middleweight champion George Groves in 2016.
Murray fluctuates between Middleweight and the 168-pound division. Murray and Jacobs have a common opponent, the unified Middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin–Murray was stopped by GGG in Round 11 in February of 2015, while Jacobs went the distance with Golovkin and lost in a close unanimous decision.
“I really rate Jacobs, he is up there with the best middles in world, as he proved against Golovkin, I didn’t think he beat ‘GGG’ but he definitely showed how good he is. What I liked most about that performance was how disciplined he was and his corner in particular were amazing. I would love to fight Jacobs, we’ve already fought in the amateurs and you know I’ve never dodged a fight. You’ve got that Matchroom link, so you’d think it’s an easy fight to make. I know I’m in the final stages of my career so all I can do is just keep ticking over and wait for the call. I’ll be making sure I’m ready for a big fight even at short notice.”
Jacobs vs. Murray would definitely be a fan-friendly fight but Jacobs is on a different level than Murray–Murray is on the tail end of his career as Jacobs seems to just be getting started.
Though Jacobs would be heavily favored in this fight, it would make for a tough tune-up fight as Jacobs looks to face the top Middleweights.
Winner of Golovkin vs. Canelo
The rematch between Gennady Golovkin and Canelo Alvarez is far from set in stone, but Jacobs has hinted at his interest in fighting the winner.
With that being said, Jacobs also stressed that he wants to stay active so this fight would likely be two or three fights down the road and that is if Jacobs continues to be dominant in the Middleweight division in the meantime.