Daniel Jacobs decisions Sergiy Derevyanchenko – RESULTS
By Sean Jones: Daniel Jacobs (35-2, 29 KOs) just barely edged previously unbeaten #1 IBF Sergiy Derevyanchenko (12-1, 10 KOs) by a 12 round split decision to capture the vacant International Boxing Federation middleweight title on Saturday night on HBO at Madison Square Garden in New York.
The judges’ scores were 115-112, 115-112 for Jacobs, and 114-113 Derevyanchenko. Boxing News 24 scored it 115-112 for Derevyanchenko.
Jacobs knocked Derevyanchenko down in the 1st round with a right hand to the head. Derevyanchenko survived the round. Derevyanhenko came back to hurt Jacobs in the 2nd.
It was expected that Derevyanchenko would lose the fight if it went to the scorecards, since the fight took place in Jacobs’ hometown of New York, and he was the A-side in the promotion. Moreover, Jacobs’ promoter Eddie Hearn of Matchroom Boxing USA was the lead promoter on the card. With Jacobs expected to be Saul Canelo Alvarez’s opponent for May of 2019, there was a lot of money at stake for this fight. You can argue that a fight between Canelo and Jacobs was always the fight to be made compared to Canelo-Derevychenko.
In the championship rounds, Jacobs got the worst of it from Derevyanchenko. It wasn’t a case of Jacobs being tired. It was more of a case of Jacobs putting too much emphasis on his defense, as he was trying to be slick too much and not standing and trading.
The difference between the two fighters in terms of size was huge. Jacobs, 5’11”. looked like a light heavyweight tonight fighting a junior middleweight in 5’9″ Derevyanchenkp. Earlier on Saturday, Jacobs had made the 170 lb rehydration limit for the secondary weigh-in. The fighters couldn’t come in over 170, and there were concerns that Jacobs, 31, would either fail to make weight or skip the weigh-in altogether like he did when he fought Gennady Golovkin last year. Jacobs decided not to take part in the secondary weigh-in on the day of the fight so that he could rehyrate as much as possible. It didn’t make a difference, as Jacobs still lost the fight. Jacobs couldn’t use that strategy on Saturday night to try and win, because he needed to capture the vacant IBF middleweight title to use the belt as a bargaining chip to get WBC middleweight champion Saul Canelo Alvarez to face him. Jacobs still might not have done enough to get the Canelo fight, as his defensive focus during the fight might be a turn off for him and his promoters at Golden Boy Promotions. They like to face opposition that come to fight like Golovkin, and they don’t like runners or defensive specialists.
Jacobs was mostly standing on the outside, jabbing and pot-shotting with his punches. It wasn’t an exciting fight to watch.
This was Jacobs’ second consecutive razor thin win over an opponent. In his previous fight, Jacobs barely beat Maciej Sulecki by a 12 round majority decision last April. A lot of boxing fans thought Sulecki did enough to win. Tonight, it was the same situation with Jacobs winning another controversial decision. Jacobs isn’t good enough to dominate his opponents, and he no longer knocks out top middleweights anymore due to his defensive focus to his game. Jacobs is so preoccupied not getting hit that he fails to sit down on his punches enough to score knockouts. Overall, Jacobs isn’t aggressive enough for him to KO his opponents like he used to do. It’s doubtful that Jacobs would have ever been able to knockout a guy like Derevyanchenko even in his prime, but at least he would have attempted to.
Tonight, Jacobs fought in a lot more conservative manner than fans expected him to. People thought Jacobs was going to go to war with the 32-year-old Derevyanchko like he did against Sulecki, but he did the opposite by playing it safe.
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