By Keith Idec
Danny Jacobs realizes most boxing fans and media will consider him a paper middleweight champion if he beats Jarrod Fletcher on Saturday night at Barclays Center.
But when you’ve overcome cancer and feel fortunate just to be able to box again, you take that criticism in stride. The 27-year-old Jacobs just wants to defeat Fletcher in one of three bouts Showtime will televise and move forward in a rejuvenated career that was jeopardized when doctors determined Jacobs had osteosarcoma, an aggressive form of bone cancer, in May 2011.
“It doesn’t matter to me,” Jacobs said on a recent conference call. “A secondary champion or the first champion, it doesn’t matter to me. I have an opportunity to fight for a world championship. It’s not my job to make the belts. It’s not my job to put myself in the position to fight for the belts. It’s just my job really to go in there and just be ready to fight whoever they put in front of me. Whatever title is there, I’m very grateful for it. Whether they call me a paper champion or a real champion, I am a champion because each and every time I step in that ring I give it my all. That’s pretty much all I can say about that.”
Brooklyn’s Jacobs (27-1, 24 KOs) and Australia’s Jarred Fletcher (18-1, 10 KOs) will fight for the vacant WBA 160-pound championship. Knockout artist Gennady Golovkin (30-0, 27 KOs) is the WBA’s “super” middleweight champion. Jacobs conceded that even if he overcomes Fletcher he’ll still be a few fights from feeling ready to challenge Golovkin. For more on a potential Jacobs-Golovkin fight, click here: http://www.boxingscene.com/jacobs-not-ready-golovkin-still-see-flaws--80496
Keith Idec covers boxing for The Record and Herald News, of Woodland Park, N.J., and BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.