Lesson learned: Daniel Jacobs takes Luis Arias to school
In what turned out to be an outclassing, Daniel “Miracle Man” Jacobs earned a wide unanimous decision (120-107, 119-108, 118-109) over Luis “Cuba” Arias Saturday night, reconfirming the 30-year-old Brooklynite is atop the middleweight contenders list. The fight was the main event of a Matchroom Boxing card held at the Nassau Coliseum, in Uniondale, New York, and televised live on HBO’s “World Championship Boxing.”
“Life is blissful right now. I’m living my dreams,” Jacobs told HBO’s Max Kellerman post-fight. “All I want to do is impress the fans. All I want to do is be the people’s champion and I have the opportunity to do that with my new showcase here on HBO. Sky’s the limit.”
Jacobs, 33-2 (29), barely looked like he was in a 12-round fight and, although the Freudian slip of “showcase” turned out to be what it was all along, there was enough reason to believe Arias could make it competitive, thanks to the exuding confidence of the 27-year-old out of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Much of the pre-fight build-up was because of Arias’ gift of gab but, by the end of it, he was silenced after the scolding he took.
In the opening moments of the first, Jacobs’ right hand caught Arias’ temple and it had the latter seeking a clinch before having a chance to establish whatever game plan. Coming off his inspired defeat to unified middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin last March, Jacobs showed little to no signs of ring rust and his advantage in size and power was already clear within the first three minutes.
Arias, 18-1 (9), went to attack the body of Jacobs and hoped to follow up with a torpedoed overhand right but Jacobs could see the shots coming a mile away, leaving the prospect open for counters. Jacobs’ right uppercut was perhaps his best counter of the night but he did just as well in putting together accurate combinations, when pressing the offense. At the end of the sixth round, Jacobs could be heard screaming at Arias as the latter walked with his head down, toward his corner.
By the ninth, Jacobs could be heard bantering at Arias during the action, leaving a fine example of a fighter doing his taking in the ring. In the late rounds, everything got easier for Jacobs and his body language was like that of a man who was in full control. A right hand toward the back of the head in the 11th round dropped Arias for the fight’s only knockdown and, although it shouldn’t have been ruled one, upon a second viewing, it marked the first official instance in Arias’ young career – something of which he boasted in the pre-game events.
Lasting all 12 rounds was a testament to Arias’ effort. He did his best to compete with Jacobs but his best wasn’t good enough on this night.
“Well I just want to stay active,” Jacobs said when asked what is next. “My promoter Eddie Hearn is going to keep me busy, going into next year, and I’m just looking forward to what he has in store because I know he has major plans for me. I look forward to see whoever wants to step up.”
In his first fight with Hearn, Jacobs proved Hearn didn’t sign a fighter on the decline but in the thick of his prime. With the next big middleweight fight happening in December, on HBO – WBO titleholder Billy Joe Saunders vs. David Lemieux – Jacobs, if he hadn’t already, made it clear that he should be fighting among the top of the division.
“We’re gonna invade Montreal,” Jacobs said about December 16’s middleweight title bout. “We’re gonna make sure that we’re ringside, so those guys see my face and then (I’ll) call them out afterward. I’ve already made it clear, through social media, that I want to fight and both guys denied me, so hopefully this performance, being with you guys (HBO) and Matchroom, they’ll be forced to fight me.”
Making his HBO debut, Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller forced a ninth round stoppage of Mariusz Wach to remain unbeaten but the performance want exactly a splash.
Miller, 20-0-1 (18), a heavyweight hopeful out of Brooklyn, New York, took his time in trying to break down his Polish foe. The robust, big man showed flashes of his fighting ability, thanks to some quick hands on the inside. Wach, 33-3 (17), had the willingness to throw back but his slow hands were far too easy for Miller to anticipate. Part of the athleticism Miller has shown as a 280-plus-pound heavyweight was found in his defense, in this performance, but taking his time in trying to chop Wach down grew monotonous midway through the scheduled 12 rounds.
To make matters worse, Wach fought as a one-handed fighter by the seventh, when it was clear he was protecting his right hand. Referee David Fields abruptly stopped the fight in the ninth round without much reason but no one complained.
In the opening bout of the HBO telecast, Cletus “The Hebrew Hammer” Seldin beat Roberto Ortiz into enough of a bloody pulp to force the ringside doctor to stop the fight near the end of the third round. The junior welterweight contest was scheduled for ten.
“Right off the bat I know what his speed is and, from then and there, I can counter with my big shot,” Seldin told Kellerman after leaving Ortiz a bloody mess. “Look what I did to his face!”
Seldin, 21-0 (17), dropped the hammer on Ortiz in the opening seconds of the first round with a right hand to the temple from which the 31-year-old Mexican couldn’t recover. He took a knee for the second knockdown, 90 seconds into the fight, and Seldin spent the rest of the fight trying to recreate his opening highlight.
Ortiz, 35-2-2 (26), did his best to give any resistance he could muster but he was ultimately woozy the rest of the way. Making matters worse, Seldin landed a right hand that opened a cut above Ortiz’s left eye and the blood had no chance of stopping as it led to the rightful stoppage in the third.