Canelo Alvarez (52-1-2, 34 KOs) retained his WBA, WBC, The Ring, and Lineal middleweight titles, and also became the new IBF Middleweight World Champion, after defeating Daniel Jacobs (35-3, 29 KOs) in a close 12-round unanimous decision last night at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
Alvarez unified the WBA, WBC and IBF middleweight titles in a fight streamed exclusively live on DAZN, with scores of 115-113, 115-113 and 116-112, landing 45 percent of punches overall.
“It was just what we thought,” Canelo said after the fight. “We knew he was going to be a difficult fighter, but thank god we did things the right way, what we were going to do.”
The fight was tense and both boxers, known for their punching power and defensive ability, found it difficult to land clean hard shots.
Canelo dominated in the early rounds, stalking Jacobs in what has been widely described as a chess match. But Jacobs rebounded in the middle rounds after switching to a southpaw stance. Jacobs pressed on in the eighth round with a series of flurries after pinning Alvarez on the ropes. But Alvarez was able to contain his momentum for while by responding with a punishing right.
The ninth round was also keenly contested with Jacobs landing a left hand that jarred Alvarez.
The closing rounds saw the two fighters squaring off with determination, and although Jacobs showed power, he was unable to land the blow he needed to finish off Alvarez who appeared to be out of breath. Overall Jacobs landed only 25 percent of his punches.
“I feel great. I’ll have to go back to the tapes and see exactly what the judges thought but I had conversations with my corner that I was up yet I still pressed forward because I wanted to finish strong,” Jacobs said after the fight. “He is a heck of a champion and I have to take my hat off to him.”