Exhausted beyond anything he'd felt in the ring, Gennady Golovkin could barely lift his collection of title belts. Danny Jacobs thought they should have been in his possession. Photo by Tom Hogan/Hoganphotos.
Golovkin outlasted Jacobs in a superb 12-round defense of his middleweight titles Saturday night. Both fighters are knockout artists, yet this one went the distance - the first time GGG has not had a KO in 24 fights, and his first time going 12 rounds. The Kazakh won 115-112 on two judges' cards and 114-113 on the other.
"We got the rounds in. We got the tough rounds that we needed," Sanchez said. "I give G a 7½ or 8 out of 10. Daniel was very strong and had athleticism, and Gennady's accuracy was not quite as pinpoint as in the past, but I'm happy with Gennady's performance, and I'm happy the fans got to see a great fight."
In by far the toughest fight of his stellar career, Golovkin often was stymied by Jacobs changing to a left-handed style. But a series of hard rights throughout the bout were enough - barely - to bring his record to 37-0.
Still, with Madison Square Garden reverberating from chants of "Triple G" or "JACOBS," no one could be sure of the outcome right until the final punch.
Golovkin, a world champion since 2010, is 5-0 at the Garden, which he calls a "second home." But Jacobs, from Brooklyn and, oddly, a representative of the competing arena the Barclays Center, tested him more than anyone has.
Golovkin keeps his WBC, IBO and WBA crowns - the IBF belt was not at stake because Jacobs skipped that organization's fight-day weigh-in. On the horizon for GGG could be that elusive meeting with Canelo Alvarez if the Mexican wins his fight in May against Julio Cesar Chavez Jr.