Gennady Golovkin (-700) vs. Danny Jacobs (+500), Draw (+3300)
Both Gennady Golovkin (36-0) and Danny Jacobs (32-1) have made weight for their upcoming fight, scheduled for Saturday, March 18th at Madison Square Garden. The WBA-mandated fight will unify the middleweight title, as Golovkin is the current WBA (Super) champion and Jacobs holds the WBA (Regular) title. Also on the line is Golovkin’s WBC, IBF, and IBO middleweight titles.
When I first previewed the fight, the two camps had just reached an agreement. Back then, Golovkin was the outright favorite at -350, but now he’s all the way to -700. It’s clear the bookmakers don’t like Jacobs’ chances at all.
Obviously, the Jacobs camp believe he’s being wildly underestimated. He may have a heavily padded fight record, but his only loss in 33 professional fights was against the undefeated middleweight champion, Dmitry Pirog.
Golovkin has quite a heavily padded fight record as well, though he’s hardly to blame for that. He’s been seeking high-level fights for his entire career and has been routinely ducked and avoided. Most notably, Canelo Alvarez vacated his WBC middleweight title in order to avoid the dangerous match-up.
It’s not hard to see why he’s the most feared fighter in the division. In his 36 wins, 33 have been by way of knockout. On top of that, he’s never even been knocked down in a combined 386 amatuer and professional fights. Golovkin has made a habit of demolishing his opponents inside the ring and looking remarkably stable while doing so.
He’s one of the hardest hitting boxers in the division with a seemingly impenetrable chin. His high-pressure, high-power style of boxing has made him a fan favorite around the world. Now, all he needs is a worthy opponent.
Unfortunately, Danny Jacobs isn’t exactly that; not to mention he isn’t exactly well-equipped to fight Golovkin, either. He’s known to have a fragile chin, being frequently knocked down by boxers with far less power than Golovkin. If he doesn’t improve on his defense, then it’ll be over very quickly.
Golovkin showed some defensive weaknesses in his last bout against Kell Brook. He opened himself up to some brutal shots, but appeared completely unfazed by anything Brook threw at him.
At -700, there’s not a lot of value out of Golovkin, but you just can’t pick Jacobs over him.
Pick: Gennady Golovkin (-700)
Photo credit: “Golovkin/Lemiuex Press Conference” by RJ Cohen CC BY-SA 2.0 [http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0], via Flickr.