By Allan Fox: The former IBF/WBA middleweight champion Danny Jacobs (37-3, 30 KOs) is fighting John Ryder (30-5,17 KOs) in a WBA middleweight title eliminator on DAZN this Saturday, February 12th at the Alexandra Palace, Muswell Hill , in London, England.
If Jacobs beats Ryder, he’ll be the WBA mandatory to Canelo Alvarezmeaning he’ll be in a position to challenge him in a rematch immediately.
Jacobs says a rematch with Canelo Alvarez will be different this time because he WON’T be weight drained.
Jacobs was less than 100% the last time he fought Canelo in 2019 because he needed to drain down to 160 and deal with the rehydration limit the following day.
It was hard enough for Jacobs to make weight in the first place, but then to have to keep his weight low for the secondary weigh-in drained him.
Jacobs, 35, hopes to beat Ryder and use the victory to catapult him into a title shot against undisputed super middleweight champion Canelo, who holds all four belts at 168.
It’s not a certainty that Jacobs will ever get a rematch with Canelo because the Mexican star has a full plate for 2022 with his two-fight deal that he’s expected to sign with DAZN.
Jacobs tells Canelo he won’t be drained
Danny looked weak after making weight for his fight with Canelo in 2019, and you could tell that he’d done through living hell through the ordeal.
“I don’t agree 100% because no one can dictate my career. I’ve been in control of my career since I first turned professional, but I understand the magnitude for what people mean by that,” said Jacobs to the media when asked if it’ll be a long road back to the top for the loser of his fight with John Ryder this Saturday.
“I think I’ll have a different physical body,” Jacobs said when asked what will be different in his rematch with Canelo if he gets one. I’ll have a physical advantage because I won’t be drained of weight.
“I had to go through a lot to make 160-lbs, and that’s why I moved up. Who knows what the future has in store. As I said, all I have to focus on is Saturday night, and then I can focus on those things.
“That’s why each and every fight you go out there and try and give it your all,” Jacobs continued.
“Most importantly for me, though, when I got the list of fighters for me to choose from, John Ryder was one of them. I jumped on it because I knew he was going to come forward and give it his all. He wasn’t going to run,” said Jacobs.
It’s unclear who the other names were offered to Jacobs for this fight, but it’s interesting that the name he selected was approved by the WBA for that title eliminator.
Rematch with Canelo is what Danny wants
“Absolutely, I think anybody would be interested in the fight, let alone a rematch with somebody of that nature,” said Jacobs when asked if he would like a rematch with Canelo.
“Canelo is one of the best fighters of our generation. So for me being in a different weight class  and being 100% healthy. Come Saturday night, you’ll first see, and then the sky’s the limit.
“The fights that I’ve learned the most are probably some of the fights that I didn’t look the best. Probably some of the fights I went in disliking the other person.
“Probably some of the fights where I didn’t have my mental together outside the ring. So that’s why I love the sport. I’ll show you what you need to work on.
“It’ll allow you to see based on yo performances what you need to work on. It may not even be physical. It may be up here[mental].
“My prediction is fireworks. That’s all I’m saying, ‘Fireworks.’ However, the victory comes because I do see my hand being raised by the end of the night. So however that comes, I’ll be happy. I just want to give the fans a good show,” said Jacobs.
If Canelo decides he doesn’t wish to give Jacobs a rematch, he’ll be forced to vacate his WBA title next year. Jacobs would then either be installed as the new WBA champion or ordered to fight the highest-ranked contender.
Hall of Fame for Daniel?
“He understands what this fight me, and that’s what you want,” Jacobs said. “You want someone that is going to give their all and give the and a good show.
“Being that I’m back in my happy space with my team, everybody is giving me that spark again. Boxing is more mental than physical. Even as a seasoned vet, you still have things you can learn about the sport. I love the sport.
“It’s always teaching me things about myself in and out of the ring. So now that everything is back full circle, I’m not only trying to prove to the fans and to myself that I have what it takes.
“I have goals and aspirations of not only being a world champion but catapulting myself into the Hall of Fame conversation,” Jacobs said. “That’s my ultimate goal.”
It’s still early for Jacobs to be talking about the Hall of Fame. There’s still a lot more for Jacob to achieve before he starts talking about making it to the Hall.
Ryder wasn’t on Jacobs radar
“So fights like this mean a lot because it puts me in a position of being a two-time division champion and being amongst some of the greats of my generation when it’s all said and done,” Jacobs said.
“He hasn’t been on my radar,” Jacobs said about Ryder.”He’s one of those persons that I can personally say, ‘that’s one of the guys I always wanted to fight.’But when I got the list of options, I felt like he would still be a worthy opponent and deserves a fight.
“The first time he came into my understanding was the Callum Smith fight. I still didn’t think there would be a possibility for us to fight because how many times can you fight southpaws in your entire career?
“So I’m looking forward to putting it on all the line, and most importantly giving the fans a good show,” Jacobs said. “What would be the difference [between him and Ryder]. I would say the experience factor, the power, the speed, and the ring IQ,” said Danny.
You can understand why Ryder wasn’t on Jacobs’ radar because he’s not well known in the US, and there are arguably better contenders out there.
Any fight that makes sense
“I wouldn’t say there are any names in particular. I’m any fight that makes sense,” said Jacobs when asked who in particular that he would like to face next if he gets past Ryder this Saturday night.
“You can always to throughout your entire career, wanting to fight this guy or that guy. You called them out, and to no avail. So for me personally, it’s whatever makes sense to get me to my final destination which is the Hall of Fame.
“I’m not sure what the plans are for any other fighter than myself,” Jacobs said when asked if he thinks Canelo will vacate his 168-lb titles. “My goal is Saturday night, getting the cobwebs out, showing the fans that ‘The Miracle Man’ is back, and then moving forward,” Jacobs said.
A fight that would make sense for Jacobs after Saturday’s match with Ryder would be one of these fighters:
- David Benavidez
- David Morrell Jr
- Gabriel Rosado – rematch
- Edgar Berlanga
- Caleb Plant
- Jermall Charlo