By Keith Idec
Matt Korobov believes Daniel Jacobs probably will ignore his challenge.
The Russian middleweight contender is very willing, however, to fight Jacobs when the former IBF 160-pound champion returns to the ring some time in November. Korobov beat Jacobs when they were amateurs and is certain he’d defeat him again if Jacobs gives him the opportunity.
“Jacobs knows he can’t beat me,” Korobov told BoxingScene.com. “He has avoided a fight with me as a professional at all costs because he knows it would only repeat my dominance over him as an amateur. Jacobs’ style never changed. I would fight him at 160, 168, whatever he wants. This is no problem for me because I know I will win.”
Since his fifth-round knockout loss to Russia’s Dmitry Pirog in their WBO middleweight title fight nine years ago, the 32-year-old Jacobs has lost only 12-round unanimous decisions to elite middleweights Canelo Alvarez and Gennadiy Golovkin. Mexico’s Alvarez (52-1-2, 35 KOs) beat Brooklyn’s Jacobs (35-3, 29 KOs) in their 160-pound title unification match May 4 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
“For me, if you make big money you should fight the most difficult opponents,” Korobov said. “Jacobs knows besides Canelo and Triple-G, I am the most difficult opponent for him.”
Korobov has fought well in each of his last two bouts, but he doesn’t have a win to show for either performance.
The 36-year-old southpaw gave Jermall Charlo one of the WBC middleweight champion’s toughest fights December 22. All three judges still scored their 12-round, 160-pound championship match for Houston’s Charlo (29-0, 21 KOs) by comfortable margins (119-108, 116-112, 116-112).
“Remember what I tell you,” Korobov said, “Jacobs will see this [story] and not think about fighting me because he has shared a ring with me before. Same as Charlo. One time sharing a ring with me is enough for them.”
In his following fight, Korobov boxed better than Immanuwel Aleem (18-1-2, 11 KOs), yet he settled for a 10-round draw May 11 in Fairfax, Virginia. One judge scored that fight for Korobov, 97-93, but two judges scored their encounter even (95-95, 95-95).
Those two fights convinced Korobov he still should have just one loss on his record (28-2-1, 14 KOs).
“I should be 2-0 in my last two fights,” Korobov said. “I beat Charlo and Aleem. Fortunately, millions of people saw [those two] fights on FOX. They know the truth. And remember, I fought Charlo on six days’ notice. For Jacobs, I would train like never before. I would win this fight for my family, 100 percent.”
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.