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Daniel Jacobs: “When Somebody Disrespects You, You Handle It”

By: Hans Themistode

The soft-spoken, gentle side that Daniel Jacobs consistently places on display is a far cry from the aggressive and surly personalities that his hometown of Brooklyn, New York tends to produce.

For the 33-year-old Jacobs however, he’s been more loquacious and hostile during the build up of his super middleweight contest against Gabriel Rosado this coming Friday. Years of trash talk and close physical confrontations have forced Jacobs to flip a switch. Something that he believes many have wanted to see.

“It’s a tad bit different,” said Jacobs during a recent interview with Matchroom Boxing. “People know me for being a gentleman in the sport but there are some fans out there that want to see the grit or see the Brooklyn come out of me and see me actually go at somebody who doesn’t necessarily have the best things to say about me. Where I come from when somebody disrespects you, sometimes you handle it in a way where it comes off like this. A grudge match if you will.”

Engaging in the inconsequential war of words has never been on the mind of Jacobs. To the former two-time middleweight champion, the words of his opponents would simply bounce off him and fall by the wayside. With Rosado though, the words of the Philadelphia native has hit a nerve. While Jacobs is still focused on letting his fists do the talking for him, the beating that he plans on dishing out tomorrow night is one that he is going to truly enjoy.

“I definitely want to teach him a lesson. You can’t say all of the things that he’s said about my career and personal life. It’s just not acceptable.”

Calling Jacobs (36-3, 30 KOs) an overrated fighter is something that he can stomach. Even calling into question his resume while highlighting his failures against Gennadiy Golovkin and Canelo Alvarez is something that he can reluctantly accept without getting agitated. When it comes to his cancer survival story however, Jacobs won’t allow anyone to downplay his life-changing moment.

“That was one of the things that triggered me. Him saying that he pretty much hasn’t gotten the push that I got and they’re pretty much using my cancer story to sell me to the public. To me, that was the ultimate. You don’t say things like that.”

From the very beginning of Jacobs’s career, the 33-year-old was tabbed as a possible star. The Brooklyn product racked up an amateur record of 137 wins against only 7 defeats. Success in the pro ranks quickly followed but his career under the bright lights was thought to be promptly truncated in 2011 due to osteosarcoma, a rare bone cancer. Not only did Jacobs refuse to stay down for the entirety of cancer’s ten count, but he managed to make a full recovery 19 months later and would go on to win multiple world titles.

Along his journey, Jacobs has faced some of the best in the sport of boxing including Peter Quillin, Sergiy Derevyanchenko and of course — Golovkin and Alvarez. Sharing the ring with some of those aforementioned names has given Jacobs the blueprint of what a great fighter looks like. And after looking at the traits that Rosado brings to the table in juxtaposition to others, the Brooklyn product is unafraid of what he’ll be facing this Friday night.

“His skill set isn’t the best but it’s enough to respect. The thing that he brings to the table is mostly his grit. Obviously, coming from the mean streets of Philly, I think anybody raised in that system is going to have a certain grit, but his toughness has mostly gotten him beaten up inside the ring.”

With oddsmakers listing Jacobs as a 3000-1 favorite to pick up the win, the hard hitting former champ won’t argue with those who are backing him. For the 33-year-old, he believes a win is virtually a guarantee. Once he’s done making Rosado eat his words tomorrow night, Jacobs has his eyes set on bigger fish.

“Immediately after this fight, I will be campaigning for a championship in the super middleweight division.”

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