TWELVE months ago, Sergio “The Latin” Snake” Mora (28-4-2, 9 KOs) was defeated by current WBA World middleweight champion Daniel Jacobs (31-1, 28 KOs) in Brooklyn, New York.
The official result was a TKO victory for Jacobs. However, the notch in Mora’s loss column doesn’t tell the whole story as his trip to the canvas was primarly caused by a crippling ankle injury rather than a Jacobs punch.
He clamored for the New York State Athletic Commission to overturn the original ruling but his demands fell on deaf ears and the loss on his record stood intact.
Mora and Jacobs will stage a rematch on September 9 as part of a Premier Boxing Champions card in Reading, Pennsylvania. This time, Mora feels that the knowledge of his opponent, and the opportunity to actually finish the fight on his feet, will give him an edge.
“When he knocked me down… I found out that he punched really hard,” said Mora to Spike Sports’ Dana Jacobson. “But his immaturity showed by him trying to finish me the way he did, recklessly. I was able to catch up.”
Though the ankle has fully healed, the loss has been nagging at Mora since last August. Replays of the injury he suffered, currently looping as part the current promotion, are a painful reminder of how close he came to winning another world title.
“I was going for the stoppage, especially against a guy like Jacobs, who has been stopped before,” said Mora exclusively to Boxing News in the days after their first fight. “The knockdown I suffered, it was a good punch from an unexpected angle. But I recovered fast because I was in great shape. I wasn’t hurt, I was more surprised. It all happened so fast, but looking back at the video of the fight, I absolutely feel he was more visibly shaky than me when he went down. But I knew I still had to respect his power.
“I’ve gone into my last five fights expecting to stop mopponent – that has been my mentality since my return in 2012. I was going for the stoppage, especially against a guy like Jacobs, who has been stopped before. The knockdown I suffered, it was a good punch from an unexpected angle. But I recovered fast because I was in great shape. I wasn’t hurt, I was more surprised. It all happened so fast, but looking back at the video of the fight, I absolutely feel he was more visibly shaky than me when he went down. But I knew I still had to respect his power.”
While Mora nursed his injury, Jacobs was busy increasing his profile, knocking out an undefeated Peter Quillin four months later, also at the Barclays Center. It was his eleventh straight stoppage since falling victim to a prime Dimitry Pirog in the summer of 2010. In his only career defeat, Jacobs was knocked out by a vicious straight right tacked on to the tail end of a sublime double shift by the Russian.
“We all know that his chin is suspect and questionable,” said Mora in reference to the Pirog KO and his own knockdown of Jacobs.
The champ dismissed that notion immediately following the Mora win, and added insult to actual injury by implying that the knockdown was due to his own carelessness rather than Mora’s skill or power.
“No rematch,” he added. “There’s no reason for me to go backwards now. I trained hard for this fight. It didn’t come out the way he wanted to but I’m not going to give him the rematch just ‘cause. I did what I was supposed to do. I stopped him as I predicted and I’m moving on to the next.”
After a year of smack-talk and hypotheticals, the two will meet again to settle the score once and for all. Mora doesn’t go as far as predicting a victory for himself but he’s confident that, this time around, he will be able to handle anything that Jacobs will bring to the table.
“He’s not gonna quiet me because no one is gonna quiet me. I’ve been in this business a long time and no one has ever really taken advantage of me or knocked me out or knocked me down or beat me up so he’s not going to do that either.”