Jake Paul Wants to Prove He's a 'Real Dog' to Boxing World in Hasim Rahman Jr. Fight

Adam WellsJuly 7, 2022

Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Jake Paul is looking to shed the label that he's a social-media celebrity impersonating a professional boxer.

Speaking to ESPN's Marc Raimondi on Thursday, Paul explained why he chose to take on Hasim Rahman Jr. as the replacement for Tommy Fury in the co-main event of the Aug. 6 show at Madison Square Garden in New York City:

"There's no reason why I should be taking this fight. ... I want to prove to the boxing world that I'm a real dog, which I am. And I'm gonna go in there against this 12-1 kid who is bigger than Tommy Fury, faster than Tommy Fury—all of these things. And I'm gonna put on the performance of a lifetime and just shut everyone up."

Paul was scheduled to fight Tommy Fury on the show, but Fury announced on Thursday he had to withdraw from the bout due to issues getting into the United States.

This marks the second time that a planned Paul-Fury bout has been scrapped. They were originally supposed to fight on Dec. 18, but Fury was unable to compete due to a broken rib and chest infection.

Tyron Woodley replaced Fury on the December show. Paul scored a sixth-round knockout on Woodley, his second consecutive win over the former UFC welterweight champion.

Each of Paul's first five professional boxing matches have come against fighters with no background in boxing. His first two victories were over fellow YouTube personality AnEsonGib and former NBA player Nate Robinson.

Paul took on former UFC fighter Ben Askren in his third bout. Askren was criticized for seemingly coming into the fight at less than peak physical condition. He was knocked out less than two minutes into the first round.

Hasim Rahman Jr. is the first traditional boxer Paul has ever gone up against. The 31-year-old is the son of former two-time world heavyweight champion Hasim Rahman.

Raimondi noted that Rahman has fought as heavy as 269 pounds in his career. Nakisa Bidarian, Paul's business partner, told Raimondi that Paul is currently 195 pounds one month away from his matchup with Rahman.

Rahman has a 12-1 career record, with the lone defeat coming in his last bout against James McKenzie Morrison in April.


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