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Danny Jacobs vs. Sergio Mora II Pick

Daniel Jacobs vs. Sergio Mora II Fight Preview and Prediction to Win
When: Friday, September 9, 2016
Where: Santander Arena, Reading, Pennsylvania
TV: Spike TV
Weight Class: Middleweights
Titles: WBA Middleweight Title
By Loot, Boxing Handicapper, Lootmeister.com

Danny Jacobs, 31-1 (28 KOs), Brooklyn, New York
Vs.
Sergio Mora, 28-4-2 (9 KOs), Los Angeles, California

Betting Odds: Danny Jacobs (-700), Sergio Mora (+500)

Danny Jacobs defends his WBA middleweight strap in a rematch with former 154-pound champ Sergio Mora on September 9. Their first fight in August 2015 and was an unforgettable two-round war, truncated by an ankle injury suffered by Mora. We are hoping for a more organic result this time, as these two really seemed to be combining for a great battle the first time around. Who comes out ahead this time?

The first fight started with an incredible round one. Jacobs connected on the smaller Mora with a tremendous right hand that floored him hard. Mora got up and as Jacobs sized him up for the kill, Mora lashed out with a vicious left hook shot that felled Jacobs and had him in even worse peril that Mora was when he was knocked down. Even at the end of the round, Jacobs appeared to be on unsteady legs. He recuperated well enough to win the second round from Mora. A knockdown towards the end of the round punctuated a good round for Jacobs. Mora hurt his ankle and when he tried to move around after rising, he had trouble and the fight was stopped.

Still, Mora had acquitted himself fairly well up until that point. Jacobs might be bigger and have the imposing record, but there's always been a sense of vulnerability to him. With only 9 KOs in 35 fights, Mora was able to drop him and have him in considerable trouble. Whether he would have landed another shot like that is questionable, but certainly possible. And in that event, anything could happen. At the same time, Jacobs seemed to be getting the measure of Mora in that second round. Mora still showed himself to be a capable fighter, despite being a very small middleweight and being removed from boxing's big-time for quite some time now.

It's hard to believe that the kid who won the Contender series all those years ago is now a grizzled 35-year old former champion. It's been a long road for Mora, one that culminated in a title-fight win over the late Vernon Forrest in 2008. In the ensuing years, there have been a lot of ups and downs. Losses to Brian Vera in 2011 and 2012 slowed him down considerably, but before meeting Jacobs, he was on a 5-fight win streak. He is still very slick and elusive. It's just that things like that ankle injury are what come with being an aging fighter. And he's been cut no less than ten times. He's still "The Latin Snake," but it just comes in a less-dependable package nowadays. But make no mistake; Mora is a real fighter and one with a lot of skills and experience.

Jacobs' road to this spot has been met with considerable obstacles that he has overcome. First as a fighter, he was cruising along really well before being exposed brutally by Dmitry Pirog in 2010, who would have been one of the better middleweights if he had stayed healthy. In many people's minds, that fight exposed Jacobs as a bit fraudulent or at the very least highly overrated. That was small potatoes compared to a cancer scare that cost him nearly two years from the sport.

Jacobs showed tremendous grit in beating cancer. He then started rattling off wins and is now on a run of 11 straight triumps. Always called out for the quality of his opposition, Jacobs silenced some critics with a resounding first-round KO over unbeaten Peter Quillin, a fighter many felt was the second-best middleweight in the world. Granted, that December 2015 win was less than artful, as he bludgeoned a shell-shocked Quillin to the canvas like how a hammer works on a nail. But he still managed to add a huge name to his resume and an air of credence to his career.

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At the same time, he showed how incomplete a package he is when getting dropped by Mora in their first fight. Jacobs is an opportunistic fighter offensively, without really being an intelligent one. There's nothing all that slick about him. He lacks nuance. He's just a big, very athletically-gifted, and strong guy who can fight. His chin isn't all that dependable and when a solid shot lands, Jacobs has a way of absorbing the full brunt of it. When it comes to the finer points, he just isn't very advanced. But that's something to worry about when he faces the real big dogs at 160. He obviously fits in well with the likes of Mora and his gifts make him a threat against anybody.

With Mora, you get a higher degree of experience, skill, speed, and overall fighting ability. While capable of still hitting high notes, he is a bit over the hill at 35 and not all that dependable of a proposition in what figures to be a hard fight. Jacobs is a force of physicality if nothing else. The sheer physical mayhem he can deliver at 160 pounds is considerable and he's a hard guy to hold off. But Jacobs is always a decent upset candidate and Mora showed he was on the right track in their first fight. I'll take the dog.

Loot's Pick to Win the Fight: I'm betting on Sergio Mora at +500.

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