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New York state of mind; boxing heroes win for hometown fans

Written By | Nov 12, 2017

Daniel Jacobs (left) silenced Luis Arias and his pre-fight trash talk with 12 dominant rounds in November. Photo: Ed Mulholland, HBO Boxing

SAN DIEGO, Calif., November 11, 2017 Although Daniel Jacobs lost to middleweight powerhouse Gennady Golovkin at Madison Square Garden in March, his stock rose with boxing fans for the tremendous effort and skill he demonstrated in a razor-thin decision.

The 6,921 fans in the house warmly welcomed the former WBA middleweight champion back to the ring at the Nassau Coliseum on Long Island, New York for his first fight under new promoter Eddie Hearn and Matchroom Boxing USA, taking on Luis “Cuba” Arias of Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

Daniel Jacobs (right) fought a smart, tactical bout against Luis Arias. Photo: Ed Mulholland, HBO Boxing

Arias had a lot to say before the fight, but Jacobs (33-2, 30 KOs) dominated the dialogue in the ring, dispatching Arias in a 12 round unanimous decision, handing Arias (18-1, 9 KOs) the first loss of his career by scores of 120-107, 119-108 and 118-109.

Jacobs is too powerful, too skilled, too well trained, too disciplined… you’re getting the point. Arias looked unprepared and awkward compared to the smooth, seamless approach of Jacobs. So Arias tried to make it a little rough at times, especially when Jacobs hurt him, but it was the tactic of a man seeing the fight fade away from him.

“Life is blissful right now, I’m living in my dreams. All I want to do is impress the fans … the sky’s the limit,” said Jacobs after the bout.

When asked about all the trash talk from Arias before the fight, Jacobs said “It added extra motivation, but at the end of the day it deterred me from my game plan.” Jacobs said he tried to hard to knock out Arias, but blamed nine months of ring rust for being unable to stop his opponent.

Daniel Jacobs said after his decision over Luis Arias he tried to hard to land a big knockout. Photo: Ed Mulholland, HBO Boxing

It was not a particularly entertaining fight with ebbs and flows, or athletic drama, but it was a superb technical performance by Jacobs. Jacobs rises to the level of his opposition at times.

Arias suffered the first knockdown of his career in the 11th round when his glove touched the canvas after a questionable true contact by Jacobs, but in the scheme of things all it hurt was Arias’ pride. Arias can at least say he’s never been stopped.

Now that Jacobs is with Matchroom Boxing USA, a fight with the winner of the December 16 bout between Billy Joe Saunders and David Lemieux is easily made. Jacobs promised he’d be ringside so both men would see his face there, saying it’s a fight he wants.

Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller remained undefeated with a ninth round TKO over Mariusz Wach Saturday. Photo: Ed Mulholland, HBO Boxing

Heavyweight Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller (20-0-1, 18 KOs) of Brooklyn roughed up rugged Polish heavyweight Mariusz Wach, accumulating damage until referee David Fields stopped the fight on the advice of the ringside physician at 1:02 of the ninth round.

Even with a 6-foot-7 giant in front of him, Miller was able to impose his will, his size, and close distance, delivering a diversified portfolio of punches. Wach may have won the first round, but his punch output slowed to a trickle during most of the fight. It became apparent something was wrong with Wach’s right hand midway through the fight. He said he hurt it after Round 7. His few attempts to land something with it hurt him far worse than he hurt Miller. His corner urged him to continue with the left, but there was really little point, and the ringside personnel did their job stopping the fight.

Miller landed 204 of 620 punches thrown (33 percent) against Wach’s 95 punches of 328 thrown (29 percent), with Miller landing far more power shots, 156 to 49 for Wach.

After the fight, Miller gave himself an F grade, saying his left elbow was injured. He said he came into the fight too light at 283 pounds, and prefers to fight at a higher weight and would be bigger for his next fight. He suggested Joseph Parker or Dillian Whyte as his next opponent.

Jarrell Miller has a variety of punches in his arsenal, but he’ll have to improve his defense and up his skills to rise to the top of the heavyweight division. Photo: Ed Mulholland, HBO Boxing

Miller has good handspeed for a heavyweight, and he works smartly to the body. He did what he needed to do Saturday to push himself toward a title fight opportunity. Miller is a brash personality and someone fans love to watch. He’s a promoter’s dream making the lead up to his fights exciting. But he left himself open at times with Wach and got hit. He slips some punches and eats others just fine, but he can’t let the same thing happen if he gets the chance to step up to opponents like Anthony Joshua and Deontay Wilder.

Cleus Seldin shows Saturday how he earned the nickname “The Hebrew Hammer” after hammering Roberto Ortiz Saturday. Photo: Ed Mulholland, HBO Boxing

Cletus “The Hebrew Hammer” Seldin made believers out of fans seeing him for the first time, scoring a third round stoppage win over Roberto Ortiz in his HBO debut. Seldin (21-0, 17 KOs) dropped Ortiz (35-2-2, 26 KOs) with a right hand to the temple seconds after the opening bell, and scoring another knockdown in round one.

Although Ortiz didn’t give up, the clock was ticking. Seldin sealed Ortiz’s fate when he opened a significant cut over the left eyebrow with a stinging right hand shot in round two. The blood flowed and it hampered Ortiz’s final efforts to get himself back into the fight. Ortiz went down again in the third round, although it didn’t seem due to a punch. At this point, the ringside physician took another look and waived off the fight at 2:43 of the third round. Seldin’s local “Hammerhead” made themselves heard loud and clear.

Cletus Seldin put Roberto Ortiz on the canvas within seconds of the opening bell of their fight Saturday. Photo: Ed Mulholland, HBO Boxing

Seldin, age 31, came to boxing late but he’s athletic and he’s a fast learner, adopting an old school style knowledgeable New York fans appreciate. It’s time for him to step up to better competition in the super lightweight division. With Terence Crawford moving to welterweight, the division is wide open and the timing couldn’t be better for someone like Seldin. He needs to fight outside New York and stay busy to work his way quickly to a title shot.

Gayle Lynn Falkenthal, APR, is President/Owner of the Falcon Valley Group in San Diego, California. She is also a veteran boxing observer covering the Sweet Science for Communities. Read more Ringside Seat in Communities Digital News. Follow Gayle on Facebook and on Twitter @PRProSanDiego. Gayle can be reached via Google +

Copyright © 2017 by Falcon Valley Group




Gayle Falkenthal

Gayle Lynn Falkenthal, MS, APR, is President of the Falcon Valley Group, a San Diego based communications consulting firm. Falkenthal is a veteran award-winning broadcast and print journalist, editor, producer, talk host and commentator. She is an instructor at National University in San Diego, and previously taught in the School of Journalism & Media Studies at San Diego State University.