Does a win this weekend give Jake Paul the respect he deserves?
YouTube sensation turned pro boxer Jake Paul (5-0) will be testing his skills against one of the greatest UFC fighters of all time Anderson Silva (3-1).
The main event will take place on Showtime pay-per-view at the Gila River Arena in Glendale, Arizona, on Saturday, Oct. 29.
How Paul’s career began
It has been a short but impressive career thus far for “The Problem Child.” Paul, 25, earned his first TKO victory in 2020 over YouTuber Ali Eson Gib. “I thought I was going to be nervous,” Paul told reporters after his first-round win.
“I thought there was going to be an adrenaline dump like in my first fight. But it literally felt like a sparring match. I was super calm, composed and just kept my movement. We stuck to the game plan even in the first two minutes.”
Paul moves on
Paul would make his second fight ten months later look easy, flatlining NBA star Nate Robinson in the second round. After this vicious knockout, it was clear the boxer raining out of Cleveland, Ohio, needed a step up in competition.
A step up in competition
Apr. 17, 2021, Paul earned his third straight TKO victory after defeating former Bellator champion Ben Askren in the first-round. Despite leaving all his opponents unconscious up to this point, many people wanted Paul to face an active fighter – not someone who is retired or plays a different sport.
“Jake Paul is going into the ring against non-boxers. That has to stop. Now we need to see him against guys that actually fight, like box,”Stephen A. Smith told First Take on Apr. 19.
When he took on former UFC welterweight champion Tyron Woodley, Paul attempted to answer these questions. In this eight-round war, Paul proved he could take a punch and had the cardio to make it competitive wherever the fight goes.
Does beating Woodley twice earn some respect?
Still, it was not enough. People wanted more. Paul was then scheduled to fight Tommy Fury, Tyson Fury‘s half-brother. Paul versus Fury was supposed to reveal how the 25-year-old would deal with an actual professional boxer. Unfortunately, Fury pulled out due to a rib injury, forcing Jake Paul to rematch Woodley.
In the rematch, at 2:12 in Round 6, Paul immaculately set up a right hand that left Woodley face down in the center of the canvas. The knockout seemingly gained some respect from fight fans:
“If Jake Paul wasn’t Jake Paul. If he wasn’t this YouTube guy. If he was just a boxer, and you see a boxer knockout the former UFC welterweight champion… You’d be like, ‘oh man,’ have you seen this Jake Paul kid coming up?”Joe Rogan said on The Joe Rogan Experience.
Success breeds hate
Despite the viral knockout, people still failed to give Paul credit for his accomplishments:
“Go out and fight a boxer. There are thousands of them, your weight, your age, in your prime… Please, Jake, next time, can you just fight a f***ing boxer? Someone in their prime. Please?” Michael Bisping said on his YouTube channel.
After all the noise, Paul now finds himself set to fight Silva – something UFC president Dana White thought he would never dare to attempt.
“I f***ing guarantee you this; you aren’t going to see Jake Paul calling Anderson Silva out, that I f***ing promise you,”White told the media on Sep. 14.
What Paul plans on doing Saturday
Despite all the backlash, Paul promises to deliver another spectacular performance:
“It’ll be a tough fight in the beginning. But, I’ll slowly pick him apart and create an opening and knock him out. I’m a knockout artist. That’s what I do. I set up my opponents, get them feeling comfortable, get them in the exact spot I want, and then put them away,”Paul told ESPN’s Marc Raimondi
How Paul can respect
Paul is taking a massive risk against the 47-year-old southpaw. Even though Paul has age on his side, Silva recently defeated former WBC champion Julio César Chávez Jr. (53-6-1). Despite many saying he was in way over his head, Silva earned the split-decision win.
Whether you like Jake Paul’s personality or not, you will have to give him his respect inside the ring if he delivers yet another knockout Saturday night.