Saunders makes sense for Jacobs as American targets two-weight world title swoop

PUBLISHED: 14:31 01 May 2020 | UPDATED: 17:32 04 May 2020

WBO super-middleweight champion Billy Joe Saunders is on the radar for Daniel Jacobs. Picture: ED MULHOLLAND/MATCHROOM BOXING USA

WBO super-middleweight champion Billy Joe Saunders is on the radar for Daniel Jacobs. Picture: ED MULHOLLAND/MATCHROOM BOXING USA

Ed Mulholland/Matchroom Boxing USA

Daniel Jacobs has two British super-middleweight world champions firmly in his crosshairs – including Hatfield’s Billy Joe Saunders.

Callum Smith (left) is on the radar for Daniel Jacobs. Picture: RICHARD SELLERS/PACallum Smith (left) is on the radar for Daniel Jacobs. Picture: RICHARD SELLERS/PA

The Brooklyn brawler has only lost three times in 39 fights but like the 30-year-old Saunders, the former WBA middleweight champ has made the move up a weight class to super-middleweight.

Two of those losses saw he lose first the WBA strap and then the IBF equivalent, but both were to the megastars of the middleweight division, Gennady Golovkin and Canelo Alvarez, and both were on points decisions.

The ‘Miracle Man took his first step towards two-weight world glory when he defeated Julio Cesar Chavez Jr on a wild night in December in Phoenix, Arizona, marking his arrival at 168lbs by forcing Chavez Jr to retire on his stool after five rounds.

Liverpool’s Callum Smith is regarded as the top dog in the super-middleweight division, holding the WBA and Ring Magazine belts, while Saunders picked up the WBO crown having made his own move up from 160lbs.

All three fighters are promoted by Eddie Hearn and Jacobs hopes that a World title bout with either champion can be made so he can stake his claim for the hall of fame.

Speaking on the latest episode of Matchroom Boxing’s podcast, The Lockdown Tapes, he said: “I want to be a hall of famer one day and winning a belt in this weight division is what I need to do to achieve that.

“You are going to see the best version of Daniel Jacobs now and I’m looking at the likes of Callum and Billy Joe, both of those fights make sense.

“Looking at my track record I have really fought some good guys in the last two years. I have been able to face the best in the division in my era and that’s what makes me most happy.

“It only makes sense for me coming into this division to fight the very best. I want to be able to prove that I am the best.”

Before he gets there though he has an itch he wants to scratch first, in the shape of brash Philadelphian Gabriel Rosado who has been poking at Jacobs for a showdown.

“As well as wanting the big fights, there is also the fights where you want to settle the debt which is what I have always said about that little nag Gabe Rosado,” said Jacobs.

“If we were to fight in New York or Philadelphia then great, it’s onwards from there. He is just a hater who wants my position.”

Jacobs’ position is a healthy one, with lofty rankings across the board putting him in prime shape for a World title crack when boxing returns.

The 32-year-old recognises that any return is up in the air and says he’s open to the prospect of fighting behind closed doors while sport takes a back seat to the ongoing health crisis – with Jacobs happy to put his trust in promoter Eddie Hearn and Matchroom Boxing.

“I would like to fight this year, but we don’t know at this time,” said Jacobs. “We don’t know how long this process is going to take.

“Fighting behind closed doors would be a strange experience but if I felt that the fans wanted to see me fight then I would make that sacrifice for them, it would be cool.”

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