To get an idea of what’s about to happen next, close your eyes and picture Bruce Banner as someone insults his mom.
It’s August 19, 2013, and Daniel Jacobs has just suffered a nasty headbutt.
He’s in the ring with the rugged Giovanni Lorenzo, who Jacobs contends has been employing roughhouse tactics from the get-go, rendering the fight less a boxing match than something resembling a street mugging.
And then came the aforementioned clash of temples.
“It just made me so angry,” says Jacobs, who’s normally calm demeanor couldn’t be more unlike the state that he’s speaking of. “I just wanted to get him out of there. The first time I got him hurt, I just took advantage of it and eventually knocked him out with the perfect combination.”
Lorenzo would go down for good in Round 3.
For plenty of fighters, keeping a firm grip on their emotions in the ring is key to maintaining focus, to not letting their passions get so inflamed that they end up burning themselves out.
But when Jacobs’ emotions get the best of him, he, in turn, tends to get the best of his opponent.
“When I get angry I think it’s beneficial to me because it makes me more focused. I get in a zone,” he explains. “For a lot of people, it takes them out of the zone; they’re throwing combinations just out of frustration. But it actually makes me more aggressive.”
Jacobs speaks coolly as he talks about the value of losing his cool.
But as he gets ready to battle Caleb Truax in Chicago on April 24, it’s time to start getting mad.
Maybe someone in Jacobs’ corner should just suck it up and bash heads with him already.
“My trainer always gets on me about it. He wants me to turn it up earlier or on my own, but every fighter is different,” Jacobs says. “Some fighters just need to get hit a couple of times to be at their best.”