It's hard to say what was hurting Dustin Jacoby worse after the fight – his heart or his arm.
His arm, because his left forearm bone had been broken clean through by a Simon Marcus kick and the ringside physician had stopped the fight just as the second round was about to begin. His heart, because the first round had been probably the best performance of his career to date.
Jacoby and Marcus first fought at GLORY 30 LOS ANGELES and Marcus, defending the middleweight championship in that fight, dominated most of it with his high level Muay Thai skills. This GLORY 34 DENVER rematch was felt by some to be coming around too soon for Jacoby – how was it going to be different to their fight in May?
As it turned out, quite a lot different. Jacoby looked to be on a new level technically, deploying pinpoint accurate defense and counter-attacks. More than once he was able to intercept a Marcus round kick with a counter push-kick of his own, resulting in Marcus flying backwards across the ring.
The notoriously heavy-handed Jacoby also landed some hard punches throughout the round, appearing to rock Marcus at least once. By the end of the round he was the clear winner on the scorecards and it looked like an upset win was on the cards.
But while his defense was watertight, it wasn't indestructible. As Jacoby walked out from his corner to begin the second round the ringside physician called him over and asked to inspect his arm. He Jacoby could be seen and heard protesting that he was fine and that he wanted to fight, but the doctor, looking gravely at his left forearm, declared the fight was being stopped.
The reason? Jacoby had blocked a Simon Marcus body kick with his arm. It stopped him taking the kick flush in his ribs but it also meant the forearm was broken, clean through. Closer inspection revealed the forearm to be bent at a slight angle; Jacoby insisted he could continue but there was no way he could be allowed to fight with only one functional arm.
And so the fight ended in a TKO win for Simon Marcus, putting him 2-0 over Jacoby. It was a bitter pill for Jacoby to swallow, having fought a career-best round in front of his home crowd, which numbered among them his wife and mother. Jacoby will have surgery on Monday; a metal plate is being screwed onto the bone to rejoin it.
Marcus of course was delighted. Having lost the middleweight title at GLORY 33 just a few weeks ago, by way of TKO, his quick return to action had been questioned in some quarters. But, the win over Jacoby vindicates his decision and moves him a step further along on his quest to regain the title.
Jacoby is expected to be fit for competition early in 2017.