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Jacobs is a hero but Truax could be a lucrative villain, suggests Boxing News’ Danny Flexen

23 Apr | BY Betway | MIN READ TIME |
Jacobs is a hero but Truax could be a lucrative villain, suggests Boxing News’ Danny Flexen

Jacobs is a hero but Truax could be a lucrative villain, suggests Boxing News' Danny Flexen

DANNY JACOBS, the second-ranked of the WBA’s two world middleweight champions, is a cancer survivor with a young son. Jacobs’ tale of triumph against the odds is a heartening one but while much casual betting is based on sentimentality, the smart punter is able to distance himself from such emotions – much like a psychopath.
So as Jacobs prepares for his first defence this Friday (April 24) against live underdog Caleb Truax, it would do well to remember that in the boxing ring – and despite compelling evidence to the contrary – Danny (unlike the one writing this article) is only human.

It is easy to see why his team picked Truax though. From Minnesota, hardly a fistic hotbed, Truax fought a mix of clubfighters and faded veterans on the way up. However, a points defeat to Jermain Taylor in 2012 – way after the latter’s prime run at middleweight but still before he recaptured a portion of the title last year – gives cause for hope. The scorecards said Truax was clearly outpointed over 10 rounds but he floored Taylor in the ninth and has improved since his only loss.

Truax stopped super-middle fringe contender Don George in six sessions in 2013 – he had only been halted before by the superb Adonis Stevenson and that was in the final round of 12 – and outscored decent Derek Ennis and Scott Sigmon two fights ago. The fit, persistent challenger does not have the best record, but it stands up to the champion’s.

Flashy, powerful Jacobs has racked up 28 wins but only Ishe Smith – then a future world light-middleweight champion – in 2009 and Jarrod Fletcher last time out can be considered real tests. Smith, who dropped a wide decision, was smaller, while Fletcher, who fell in five as Jacobs secured the vacant belt, had previously been smashed in two by Billy Joe Saunders.

Even before his horrible illness, Jacobs – a draw in his New York locality – was afforded a cautious journey towards the top. The folly of this was illustrated when accomplished Russian Dmitry Pirog stopped him in a vacant WBO title clash in 2010.
Jacobs isn’t in the Big Apple this time but the UIC Pavilion in Chicago, Illinois, a state close to Minnesota and a venue that has hosted Truax’s last two bouts. This is also Jacobs’ first contest without Golden Boy, who previously handled his entire pro career.
With the crowd behind him, Truax can put forth a career-best effort. It may not be enough against “The Miracle Man” but if he can ignore the eye-catching bursts and outwork his rival, it is well worth a bet on the unsung challenger to triumph on points, available at a healthy 8-1.