“ Boxing taught me to have the mental strength to overcome anything. ”
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Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams will declare Saturday, April 22, 2017 to be ‘Daniel Jacobs Day’ in Brooklyn, in a ceremony at that evening’s Andre Berto vs. Shawn Porter welterweight showdown at Barclays Center.
This week in PBC Jabs, host Jordan Hardy chats with Daniel Jacobs after his tough loss to Gennady Golovkin in their 160-pound world championship fight, and looks ahead to Tuesday’s fight card on FS1.
LOSS vs Gennady Golovkin 36-0-0
Mar 18, 2017 • Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, USA
Gennady Golovkin WINS against Daniel Jacobs by UD in Round 12 of 12
Win vs Sergio Mora
Sep 09, 2016 • Santander Arena, Reading, Pennsylvania
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Sergio Mora by TKO in Round 7 of 12
Win vs Peter Quillin 32-0-1
Dec 05, 2015 • Barclays Center, Brooklyn, New York, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Peter Quillin by TKO in Round 1 of 12
Win vs Sergio Mora
Aug 01, 2015 • Barclays Center, Brooklyn, New York
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Sergio Mora by TKO in Round 2 of 12
Win vs Caleb Truax
Apr 24, 2015 • UIC Pavilion, Chicago, Illinois
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Caleb Truax by TKO in Round 12 of 12
Win vs Jarrod Fletcher 18-1-0
Aug 09, 2014 • Barclays Center, Brooklyn, New York, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Jarrod Fletcher by TKO in Round 5 of 12
Win vs Milton Nunez 26-9-1
Mar 15, 2014 • Coliseo Ruben Rodriguez, Bayamon, Puerto Rico
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Milton Nunez by TKO in Round 1 of 10
Win vs Giovanni Lorenzo 32-5-0
Aug 19, 2013 • Best Buy Theater, New York, New York, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Giovanni Lorenzo by TKO in Round 3 of 10
Win vs Keenan Collins 15-7-3
Apr 27, 2013 • Barclays Center, Brooklyn, New York, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Keenan Collins by TKO in Round 4 of 8
Win vs Chris Fitzpatrick 15-2-0
Dec 01, 2012 • Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Chris Fitzpatrick by RTD in Round 5 of 8
Win vs Josh Luteran 13-1-0
Oct 20, 2012 • Barclays Center, Brooklyn, New York, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Josh Luteran by TKO in Round 1 of 8
Win vs Robert Kliewer 11-12-2
Mar 05, 2011 • Honda Center, Anaheim, California, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Robert Kliewer by KO in Round 1 of 10
Win vs Jesse Orta 7-13-2
Dec 18, 2010 • Pepsi Coliseum, Quebec City, Quebec, Canada
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Jesse Orta by TKO in Round 5 of 8
LOSS vs Dmitry Pirog 16-0-0
Jul 31, 2010 • Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Dmitry Pirog WINS against Daniel Jacobs by TKO in Round 5 of 12
Win vs Juan Astorga 14-4-1
May 15, 2010 • Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Juan Astorga by TKO in Round 2 of 10
Win vs Jose Miguel Rodriguez Berrio 20-4-0
Mar 27, 2010 • Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Jose Miguel Rodriguez Berrio by RTD in Round 1 of 8
Win vs Ishe Smith 21-3-0
Aug 22, 2009 • Toyota Center, Houston, Texas, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Ishe Smith by UD in Round 10 of 10
Win vs George Walton 20-3-0
Jun 26, 2009 • Desert Diamond Casino, Tucson, Arizona, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against George Walton by TKO in Round 8 of 10
Win vs Michael Walker 19-1-2
May 02, 2009 • MGM Grand, Grand Garden Arena, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Michael Walker by UD in Round 8 of 8
Win vs Jose Varela 23-5-0
Apr 24, 2009 • UIC Pavilion, Chicago, Illinois, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Jose Varela by KO in Round 2 of 8
Win vs Jose Luis Cruz 12-15-3
Feb 28, 2009 • Toyota Center, Houston, Texas, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Jose Luis Cruz by KO in Round 1 of 6
Win vs Victor Lares 14-3-0
Dec 06, 2008 • MGM Grand, Grand Garden Arena, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Victor Lares by TKO in Round 2 of 8
Win vs Jimmy Campbell 11-2-0
Nov 08, 2008 • Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Jimmy Campbell by TKO in Round 3 of 6
Win vs Tyrone Watson 7-1-0
Oct 18, 2008 • Boardwalk Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Tyrone Watson by KO in Round 1 of 6
Win vs Emmanuel Gonzalez 9-2-0
Sep 27, 2008 • Home Depot Center, Carson, California, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Emmanuel Gonzalez by UD in Round 6 of 6
Win vs Ramon Espinoza 10-7-0
Sep 13, 2008 • MGM Grand, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Ramon Espinoza by TKO in Round 1 of 6
Win vs Sergio Rios 18-8-0
Jul 23, 2008 • Morongo Casino Resort & Spa, Cabazon, California, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Sergio Rios by KO in Round 1 of 6
Win vs Julio Perez 5-8-2
Jul 04, 2008 • Dodge Arena, Hidalgo, Texas, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Julio Perez by TKO in Round 1 of 6
Win vs Jose Pena 2-2-1
May 03, 2008 • Home Depot Center, Carson, California, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Jose Pena by TKO in Round 1 of 4
Win vs Leshon Sims 5-7-0
Apr 19, 2008 • Thomas & Mack Center, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Leshon Sims by TKO in Round 4 of 4
Win vs Matt Palmer 2-1-0
Mar 22, 2008 • Morongo Casino Resort & Spa, Cabazon, California, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Matt Palmer by TKO in Round 1 of 4
Win vs Alexander Volkov 0-0-1
Feb 16, 2008 • MGM Grand, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Alexander Volkov by TKO in Round 2 of 4
Win vs Hector Lopez 1-1-0
Jan 25, 2008 • Cicero Stadium, Cicero, Illinois, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Hector Lopez by KO in Round 1 of 4
Win vs Jose Jesus Hurtado 1-1-0
Dec 08, 2007 • MGM Grand, Grand Garden Arena, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Daniel Jacobs WINS against Jose Jesus Hurtado by TKO in Round 1 of 4
Growing up in the tough Brooklyn, New York, neighborhood of Brownsville, Daniel Jacobs was groomed to be a fighter. In May 2011, he was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, a life-threatening form of bone cancer, which rendered him unable to walk at one point. But the "Miracle Man” fought his way back to become the first cancer survivor to win a world boxing title.
Jacobs won so much as a youth boxer growing up in Brooklyn that he earned the nickname the “Golden Child.”
While his winning ways continued throughout his professional career, his nicknamed changed to “Miracle Man” to depict that the biggest victory of his life actually came outside the ring.
In 2011, Jacobs was informed that he had a rare form of bone cancer that partially paralyzed him. Doctors told him he would never walk again, let alone fight.
Unsatisfied with their assessment, Jacobs proved both the medical and boxing world wrong when three years later he was hoisting a world championship belt over his head in his hometown arena Barclays Center—becoming the first-ever cancer-surviving champion.
Bullying leads to boxing
As an elementary school student, Jacobs turned to boxing after one of his classmates began bullying him on the playground.
After getting into trouble at school for fighting the bully, Jacobs learned his tormenter was training at a boxing gym, so he decided to pick up the gloves and settle the score there.
In just his second sparring session, Jacobs beat up the bully—who never bothered him again—and in the process fell in love with boxing.
Jacobs quickly found success as an amateur fighter in New York, winning the national Golden Gloves title at both 147 and 160 pounds, and compiling a record of 137-7 as he earned the nickname of “Golden Child.”
He fell just short of his bid for the 2008 U.S. Olympic team, though, when he lost in the finals of the Olympic trials.
Shining under the bright lights
Jacobs made his pro debut in Las Vegas on December 8, 2007, gaining a first-round TKO of Jose Jesus Hurtado.
Less than two years after his debut, the unbeaten Jacobs won a 10-round unanimous decision over Ishe Smith in Houston.
The victory improved Jacobs’ record to 18-0, with five of the wins coming in 2009, and he was named prospect of the year by ESPN.com.
Jacobs continued his climb up the 160-pound ranks in May 2010, knocking down Juan Astorga four times in less than two rounds before the referee stopped the fight.
Just when everything seemed to be going right for Jacobs, though, adversity knocked him back of couple of steps.
A week before his July 2010 title fight in Las Vegas against Dmitry Pirog, Jacob’s grandmother, Cordelia Jacobs, who helped raise him, died of lung cancer.
Fighting with a heavy heart, Jacobs was stopped in the fifth round, giving him his first professional defeat.
The loss of a loved one and subsequent loss in the ring tested Jacobs, who would soon take on the biggest fight of his life.
Winning the battle against cancer
What began as an opportunity to give back to U.S. troops during a USO tour in 2011 quickly became a living nightmare.
Jacobs was in Iraq when he felt a sharp pain in his legs. The pain persisted, forcing Jacobs to head back to the United States.
His situation grew worse, leaving the fighter unable to walk.
Doctors soon discovered that Jacobs had osteosarcoma, a rare and aggressive form of bone cancer.
A walnut-sized tumor had actually wrapped itself around the fighter’s spine, causing partial paralysis.
After undergoing dozens of radiation treatments and surgery to remove the tumor, Jacobs returned to the ring in October 2012 for the first time in 19 months.
In an inspiring effort, he knocked out Josh Luteran in the first round at Barclays Center in his hometown of Brooklyn.
“They told me I would never box or walk again,” Jacobs told the New York Daily News afterward. “I proved everyone wrong.”
Coming all the way back
While simply returning to the ring was a victory of monumental proportions for Jacobs, he still longed to become a world champion.
In early 2013, doctors told Jacobs, who had adopted the nickname “Miracle Man” because of his recovery, that he was free of cancer.
He followed up the good news in April by gaining a fourth-round TKO of Keenan Collins in Brooklyn, flooring his opponent twice in the final round.
After two more victories, Jacobs reached the top of the mountain at Barclays Center in August 2014, knocking down Jarrod Fletcher in the first round before finishing him off with a big right hand in Round 5 to win a 160-pound world title.
“It is a miracle. I'm just blessed to be able to perform and win this title in front of all of these Brooklynites,” Jacobs said afterward. “(While fighting cancer) my son, my baby boy, was my first priority. But getting back into the ring was my second motivation. Boxing taught me to have the mental strength to overcome anything. And that's what I did.”
Defending the title
Jacobs made his Premier Boxing Champions debut April 24, 2015, when he faced Caleb Truax at Chicago's UIC Pavilion in a fight televised on Spike TV.
It was a technical, defensive battle in the early rounds as Jacobs controlled the action with his superior footwork and precision punching.
Jacobs picked up the pace in the middle rounds and began to use his jab more to pepper the challenger while also switching to southpaw at times.
Jacobs scored a knockdown of Truax in the 12th round before finishing him off moments later, winning by TKO to stay unbeaten.
The knockouts keep coming
While Jacobs needed nearly all 12 rounds to put away Truax, he only required a combined 10 rounds to win his next three fights.
After trading first-round knockdowns with Sergio Mora on August 1, 2015, at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, Jacobs dropped the former 154-pound champion for a second time moments before the bell to end Round 2. When Mora was unable to continue fighting because of a broken ankle suffered on the knockdown, Jacobs was declared the winner.
Jacobs returned to Barclays Center on December 5 and put his world title on the line against another former champion: unbeaten Brooklyn rival Peter Quillin. Instead of the highly competitive fight most boxing fans and analysts expected, Jacobs barely broke a sweat as he overpowered Quillin and earned a stoppage in just 85 seconds.
Following the biggest victory of his career, Jacobs agreed to a rematch with Mora on September 9, 2016, in Reading, Pennsylvania. After a healthy amount of pre-fight trash talk, Jacobs ultimately let his fists do the talking in the ring, dropping Mora five times on his way to a seventh-round TKO.
“They told me I would never box or walk again. I proved everyone wrong.”