Featured Image Credit: Jake Paul/Instagram
Jake Paul claims that he ‘single-handedly’ saved the sport of boxing, which he claims was ‘dying’ before he came along.
Of course, the YouTuber turned boxer is known for making bold claims in the pursuit of hyping up his own career, and he’s definitely far from the first boxer to do that, but how much truth is there to it?
Well, with the heavyweight division attracting more attention than ever, and super-fighters such as Canelo and Tyson Fury selling millions of pay-per-views, it’s hard to say that Paul has ‘single-handedly’ saved the sport, but there have been tough times for boxing in recent years.
Anyway, now that the hype-train for the 25-year-old’s latest fight against Hasim Rahman Jr. has started rolling, Paul is back on the mic and touting himself as the saviour of the sport.
Speaking with MMA journalist Ariel Helwani on The MMA Hour, Paul explained how Rahman Jr. has attempted to renegotiate his contract at the eleventh hour, much to his displeasure.
That could even put the fight in jeopardy, meaning he’d have lost a second opponent, following the collapse of his fight with Tommy Fury.
Paul then said: "This is why boxing was such a dying sport before I came into it and literally saved the whole entire sport, basically single-handedly, along with some other heavyweights and some lightweights, but mostly because of me boxing was saved, and I’m starting to realise what the problem was.”
The boxer, who ironically calls himself The Problem Child, should maybe start calling himself The Problem Solver, then?
Anyway, he then went on to praise UFC supremo Dana White, which isn’t something he’s done much of in the past, to say the least.
Paul continued: "That’s why I give the UFC props, that’s why I give Dana White props, but it p***es me off because I just want to get to the ring and do my f**king job, put on a show for the fans."
Paul’s next fight against Rahman Jr. is an important one, perhaps not because of the prestige of his opponent – the son of former world heavyweight champion Hasim Rahman – but because it’s his first fight against a ‘real’ boxer.
So far, Paul has a 5-0 record fighting against fellow YouTubers and retired MMA fighters.
Rahman – who boasts a 12-1 record with six knockouts – will present a different challenge to that altogether.
If Paul wins, his career may gain some of the legitimacy that he believes he is entitled to.
In further bombastic terms, Paul then proceeded to call out UFC ‘double champ’ Conor McGregor, stating: "It’s got to happen. Why not?
“He’s a businessman, I’m a businessman, and that’s $75 [million] to $100 million for both of us."
In a response, the Irishman called Paul a ‘flop’ and a ‘nobody’.
However, Conor isn’t exactly a shrinking violet, and he’s no stranger to a bold claim or an unexpected move.
It would be unwise to rule that fight off the table just yet.
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