Whether you love him or hate him, Jake Paul has quickly become a household name over the last two or so years.
His popularity from Vine, Disney, and YouTube has gotten him a considerable amount of attention over the last near decade.
Jake Paul, like his brother, Logan, has within the last two-and-a-half years become a prize fighter, and it’s certainly caused some uproar in the combat sports community.
Especially when Jake acts like he’s as elite as anyone out there, and especially when the greatest ever Floyd Mayweather Jr is facing Logan in an exhibition David versus Goliath match, it ruffles feathers to say the least.
Of course, Jake has had more success, going 1-0 as an amateur and 3-0 as a professional, finishing all four bouts via knockout. Logan went 0-0-1 as an amateur and 0-1 as a professional due to him not understanding the rules, thus making him lose points on the scorecards.
Logan fought KSI in both bouts, while Jake fought fellow YouTuber Deji as an amateur, claiming the TKO victory at 1:55 of round five. He was exhausted in that fight, but pushed through and came out a different man on the other side.
As a professional, Jake defeated another YouTuber named AnEsonGib via TKO at 2:18 of round one, before KO’ing former NBA star Nate Robinson at 1:24 of round two in his next bout.
That set Jake up for a very big fight with former nine-time mixed martial arts world champion Ben Askren.
Not only had Askren won five Bellator championships and four ONE championships, but he’s also an Olympian, and he placed in the NCAA Division I National Championships all four years he attended college, winning two of them, and coming in second twice.
That doesn’t even scratch the surface of everything he’s won, those are just his bigger accomplishments. He’s also a world champion in freestyle wresting, a two-time Dan Hodge Trophy winner and much, much more.
Everyone knew Askren is not a striker by any means, but most viewed him as a real fighter, and most view Paul as an attention-seeking irritant that’s boxed for a couple years now. However, Paul proved he has much more than trash talk up his sleeve, coming through with his fourth-straight victory, doing so via TKO at 1:59 of round one.
Paul threw a blind overhand right and missed, before throwing a jab, followed up with a beautifully timed and placed right hand. It was kind of like a hooking overhand, but he set it up perfectly.
It appears three months of boxing training didn’t level up to three years of it. We all knew Askren had never really trained his boxing before. His wrestling was so good, he never needed to.
Paul also used beautiful set ups in the Nate Robinson fight. He throws crosses to the body to bring his opponents hands down, he’s a good boxer. Don’t get it mixed, he’s not a great boxer, or a great fighter, but he is a good boxer.
Now that he’s coming off his first victory over Ben Askren, what’s next for Jake Paul?
There have been a lot of people throwing their names into the hat for this fight, and Paul has also taken it upon himself to call a couple others out, and all of them are compelling fights.
To start things off, Mike Perry sparred Jake Paul a while back, and now Paul is going around stating he pretty much owned Perry in the session.
Perry did say after the session, ‘you kicked my ass‘, but he cleared that up by saying Paul won the first couple rounds, while he himself came back strong to win the last few. Perry had the following to say on the matter:
“I was just being a respectful fighter, a training partner, and I’m a good training partner. So like, after we sparred, you know, it was a privilege I get to spar with the famous dude, I was like making him feel good like, ‘oh you did a good job bro, you kicked my ass (in the first couple rounds).’
“I mean look at the video, he’s tired, and is happy that it’s over, and I was just like, happy to be there.
“And I’m mad about it because it fucked up my whole day. I’m fucking mad about it. That shit pissed me off. I wish I was pissed off when we were sparring, (that would’ve been a) whole different game.”
This would be incredibly interesting to see. Perry, unlike everyone Paul’s faced before, is a real banger. He fought a real fighter in Ben Askren, but Askren is not Mike Perry when it comes to the stand up.
Perry isn’t a technician by any means, he’s not great, but he is good at it, and he hits like a mac truck with both hands. Not to mention, Perry is one of the more violent fighters we’ve seen before, and he’s primarily a boxer.
Perry only has one more fight left on his UFC contract, and he’s fallen to 14-8 after opening his career up with a record of 11-1, all eleven victories via knockout. Now, he’s gone 3-7 in his last ten, and hasn’t knocked anyone out since his eleventh victory, with his last three victories coming via decision.
Many of us have been left thinking he may go to Bare Knuckle, which would be great to see, but first, we may end up seeing this one go down.
Next up is Nate Diaz, who took it upon himself to trash Paul for his disrespectful trash talking..
Though he didn’t initially, Paul has now voiced interest in this fight.
Diaz hasn’t been the most active recently, but that doesn’t matter when talking about someone of a Diaz caliber. They’re always ready to fight, and Nate, like Jake, and like Perry, is primarily a boxer.
Only instead of walking his opponents down with heavy punches like Perry, he walks them down and peppers them with a barrage of 50% punches, and it’s worked out for them for the most part. Nick and Nate’s kryptonite was always elite wrestlers with submission defense. How awesome would it be to see Nate end up facing Paul?
Of course, as we know, Diaz is facing No. 3 ranked UFC welterweight contender Leon Edwards at UFC 262, but this seems like a bout that peaks both Diaz and Paul’s interest, and considering UFC President Dana White put $1million on Askren to defeat Paul, he may start letting some of his better talents go over to beat him.
Chris Leben is also a name that was thrown in the hat, as he simply tweeted, ‘Say when’ following Paul’s KO over Askren, and has also had some other things to say regarding a potential clash between the two:
This would also be super interesting because, well, Leben is also a very dangerous striker.
Like Askren, he was never the best athlete: Leben was never the fastest, strongest, or most technical, but he was tougher than any of his peers, and he also hit harder than any of them.
You want to see a violent fight? Look up any of Leben’s MMA fights pre-2011, or any of his four Bare Knuckle bouts.
These first three would be a lot of fun to see because all three of these names get hit a lot in their fights, but they’re all durable as hell too. Between the three of them, out of their near 100 combined bouts, they only have four knockout defeats between them.
Lastly is former UFC welterweight champion Tyron Woodley, who a lot of people have already been campaigning for.
Woodley had a minor run-in with Paul and his team backstage, and it didn’t go too well. Both Woodley and one of Paul’s coaches, professional boxer J’Leon Love, were being quite disrespectful toward one another, and what better way to settle it than have Woodley face Paul next?
Woodley did just fight out the last fight on his contract when he was defeated by Vicente Luque at UFC 260. That marked Woodley’s fourth defeat in a row, and it marked his second-straight finish defeat.
Now’s a better time than ever for one of the greatest, and one of the hardest hitting welterweights ever to take a fight against a relatively unexperienced boxer.
Mike Perry stands 5’9” with a reach of 71”, Nate Diaz stands 6′ with a reach of 76”, Chris Leben stands 5’11” with a reach of 74”, and Tyron Woodley stands 5’9” with a reach of 74”. Jake Paul on the other hand stands 6’1” with a reach of 76”.
Dillon Danis’ name has also been thrown out there, but really, what’s that going to prove? Danis can’t strike any better than Askren. Just like the KSI fight for Jake, this one may have been passed up over the weekend.
Tyson Fury’s younger brother, Tommy Fury has been mentioned as a potential next opponent as well.
Fury isn’t as bad of a name as we’d think for Paul either. He’s only 5-0 as a professional thus far into his career, and he only took 12 amateur fights.
That’s the thing when most of us think of Jake Paul, we know he didn’t have an amateur background. We know he didn’t spend all of that time building up the proper fundamentals against skilled national, or international talent.
Instead, he’s gotten where he is by popularity, and he’s been cherrypicking his fights. Honestly, it’s been a good move for him, we’ve seen him have success four-straight times because of it.
The last name we’ll mention as a potential next opponent is English entrepreneur Joe Fournier, who has made it to 9-0 (1 NC) as a professional boxer since 2015. Not many know who he is in the combat sports world, but he is a name in other regards.
One day, if Paul continues winning, it could set him up for a fight with Conor McGregor. Who wouldn’t want to see ‘The Notorious’ versus ‘The Problem Child’?
Who would you like to see Jake Paul face next?