Jake Paul Calls Out Conor McGregor, Jorge Masvidal & Ben Askren
YouTuber-turned-boxer Jake Paul, made a successful entry into the world of professional boxing in January when he TKO’d fellow YouTuber Ali Loui Al-Fakhri – commonly known as AnEsonGib – in the very first round in Miami.
Paul is set to return to the ring this weekend against NBA star Nate Robinson, on the undercard of the Mike Tyson vs Roy Jones Jr fight (or exhibition, if you listen to the CSAC). Despite being relatively new to boxing, the 23 year old is already looking for fights against some of MMA’s biggest stars, including former two-division champion Conor McGregor, Jorge Masvidal, and Ben Askren.
“They Are Going To Get The Smoke”
The famous YouTuber is confident that not only can he go toe-to-toe with MMA’s elite but beat them in a boxing ring too. Speaking to Barstool Sports (as transcribed by BJPenn.com), Paul said he has been training with WBC and WBA world champions, and therefore believes his boxing credentials are better than those of McGregor, Masvidal, Askren and the others mixed martial artists.
“That level of competition is harder than what these MMA guys are bringing,” Paul said. “These MMA guys have to go into the gym and have to focus on elbows and kicks and jiu-jitsu, and takedowns, and takedown defence, and all this extra stuff. I’m only boxing. So, when they come into the boxing ring, my skillset is higher than theirs right now. I’m ready for these guys right now. So, Ben Askren, Masvidal, the McGregor’s they’re going to get the smoke and people will see. I have to prove myself. I’m talking a lot. I know I’m talking a lot but it’s because I’m confident.
“So, November 28th it will be the first steppingstone of ‘Wow he beat an actual athlete.’ Then after that, once I take down a professional MMA fighter,” Paul continued. “People will be like, I think that’s when people will turn their heads and be like ‘Okay, this kid wasn’t just saying s*** to blow smoke.’”
MMA Fighters Respond
Askren – a former Bellator and ONE welterweight champion – has responded to the callout, saying that the YouTuber was “out of his damn mind”.
Askren is currently recovering from hip surgery, having retired from MMA a year ago. Earlier this week, he stated that he hopes to return to the wrestling mats next year, but it’s unlikely that he’ll compete in MMA again.
Paul’s ambitious remarks also forced interesting reactions out of many, including former UFC interim lightweight champion Dustin Poirier.
Poirier is set to rematch McGregor on January 23rd at UFC 257. As for Masvidal, he hasn’t fought since losing his shot at the UFC welterweight title against Kamaru Usman at UFC 251. UFC president Dana White has stated that ‘Gamebred’ versus Colby Covington is the fight to make. But ‘Chaos’ has accused his former best friend of not wanting the fight.
Do you believe Jake Paul could beat Conor McGregor, Jorge Masvidal, or Ben Askren in a boxing ring?