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Canelo v. Jacobs Brings Something Different To The Boxing Table – Respect

Middleweight supremacy will be on the line in this fight between two of the best boxing has to offer.

In order to sell a fight nowadays, whether it be boxing or MMA, there just has to be some sort of grudge between the opposing sides. We saw that with Jarrell Miller and Anthony Joshua before the former got busted three times for performance-enhancing drugs. Ronda Rousey v. Holly Holm and Nate Diaz/Khabib Nurmagomedov v. Conor McGregor are just a few other examples. Without it, it may not entice any fans to watch said fight. That is the world we live in today. But what if one fight could change all of that?

Tonight (5/4), Canelo Alvarez (51-1-2) is set to defend his WBA, WBC, The Ring and Lineal Middleweight titles against Daniel Jacobs. The latter will be defending his IBF Middleweight Championship, with the fight airing on DAZN. These two dominant fighters have faced some of the best boxing has to offer. Rarely do you see them get agitated towards an opponent leading up to a fight. The entire leadup to this bout has always been about respect.

Jacobs (35-2) is a man that has been through plenty of adversity in his career. A cancer survivor, the “Miracle Man” came back stronger than ever. While he lost to Gennady Golovkin in controversial fashion, Jacobs pushed through. He knew that he needed to move on and go back to being the fighter everyone knew he could be. Going 3-0 after that bout, Jacobs was ready to face someone like Canelo, who he sees as someone he can respect outside of the ring.

“I give Canelo all the respect in the world,” Jacobs stated during a New York media workout. “He’s definitely top-ten, pound for pound. There are some controversial fights that he’s had that where I thought he lost, including both Golovkin fights. But I respect any man that has the courage to fight as this is a kill or be killed sport, but that’s where the respect ends. As far as getting in the ring with him goes, I want to be the victor. I want to take his head off and prove that I am the best gladiator in the world. That’s my true intentions so there’s no respect when it comes to that. But we’re both gentlemen and in my opinion, we’re great ambassadors for the sport. But take that away, and it’s going to be a blood sport in the ring.”

Canelo is the $365 million man, having signed an exclusive deal with DAZN to be one of the highest-paid athletes in all of sports. Someone who respects the game and the fighters involved, his approach to the fight is all about not underestimating the New Yorker.

“He is a very strong mental fighter,” Alvarez stated. “His history shows his perseverance and that is a big strength for him. He has that will to win. I invite that in an opponent; that is the type of fighter I am.”

Canelo likes to play his fights close to the vest while Jacobs utilizes his reach. While the fighters are different in many ways, both value the skills the other has. When the bell rings, all of the preparation for the fight will be the main focus, as two gladiators are expected to go into battle.

It is a nice change of pace when fighters will only worry about titles and respect, and not about increasing one’s ego. There is the point to make that Jacobs finally snapped at Canelo during the weigh-ins, forcing Canelo to do the same. Looking into it, perhaps the lack of drama wasn’t helping, and a little bit of it could bring in some eyes. That may have been a management call, but we’ll never truly know what happened. Whatever the case may be, there is some added fuel to the fire that can make this whole thing work.

Part of the journey is the end, right? Thanks for that line, Tony Stark. Every single moment, whether peaceful or not, has led to this one fight. The bout for middleweight supremacy is upon us. Respect will be earned when Canelo Alvarez and Daniel Jacobs prove to the world why they are simply the best. No added drama, no politicking. At the end of the day, that is what makes boxing great.

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Baseball Editor, Misc. Sports Editor. Covers all things combat sports (MMA, Pro Wrestling and Boxing). When he's not writing, Daniel hosts a podcast, The Main Event.
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