Daniel Jacobs pummels Peter Quillin, keeps belt with first-round TKO

Daniel Jacobs pummels Peter Quillin, keeps belt with first-round TKO

The knockout percentage favored Daniel Jacobs, but nearly everyone conceded the power edge to Peter Quillin on Saturday in their bout for the WBA middleweight title in a bout at the Barclays Center billed as "The Battle of Brooklyn."

But it was Jacobs with the stunning quick finish, hurting Quillin badly with an overhand right less than a minute into the fight and then staying on him the rest of the way. After Jacobs landed two big overhand rights, the second to the temple, Quillin stumbled awkwardly away.

Referee Harvey Dock looked at Quillin, whose eyes were crossed and legs were unsteady, and quickly, and correctly, stopped the bout.

It gave Jacobs a defining victory in the biggest fight of his life, a win that boosts him toward the top of an elite division.

Gennady Golovkin and Canelo Alvarez are the top dogs at middleweight, but Jacobs made a statement on Saturday in his hometown. Jacobs and Quillin, who were cordial to each other throughout the promotion, embraced in the ring after the bout had ended.

"I told him I love him," Jacobs said. "He's a brother of mine. He's fighting for the same reasons I'm fighting for. Me and Peter Quillin go back a long time, to the Golden Gloves days. I have nothing but the utmost respect for him and his family. I love him to death, but I knew this night would be mine."

Jacobs, who just three years ago was diagnosed with Osteocarcoma, a rare form of cancer, and told by his doctor that he may not survived, was never in jeopardy. The beginning of the end for Quillin came when Jacobs started a combination with a lead left hook.

He didn't land the hook, but his left knocked Quillin's guard down. Quickly, Jacobs fired the right behind it and it landed on the head, stunning Quillin. Quillin staggered around and took at least five shots, perhaps more, before he could steady himself and clinch Jacobs to buy time.

Jacobs, though, was possessed and never took the foot off the accelerator. Quillin backpedaled and tried to buy time, but Jacobs kept coming and throwing hard punches.

They moved to the corner when Jacobs fired a huge overhand right that connected on the side of Quillin's face. Jacobs returned with a second and that was the one that sent Quillin into a dance, unable to control his legs.

He was clearly unable to protect himself and Dock made the right call by stopping it.

If there was to be a knockout, most expected it to be from Quillin, but Jacobs said the finish wasn't a fluke.

"In boxing, there isn't anything unexpected," he said. "Everything is intentional. There are no lucky shots. It's shot by shot, and obviously I caught him with a shot, maybe on the temple. Obviously, I don't know which shot I caught him with but I knew once I had him hurt, I wanted to go out there and corral him and hopefully make the referee stop the fight."

It was a bitter disappointment for Quillin, who is now 1-1-1 in his last three fights. He drew with Andy Lee in April and then knocked out overmatched Michael Zerafa in September. He's now 32-1-1 following Saturday's loss to Jacobs, after beginning his career 31-0 with 23 knockouts.

He was disappointed but said he wasn't injured.

"I feel good, [but] this is what happens in the game of boxing," he said. "You go up there with all the ability, with the strength, thinking things are going to happen for you but then it somehow comes up short like that."