Jake Paul dropped UFC legend and renowned striker Anderson Silva to extend his unbeaten record to an impressive 6-0.
Whether you like him or loathe him, ‘the problem child’ added yet another big name to his record by defeating the 47-year-old Brazilian by unanimous decision at the Desert Diamond Arena in Glendale, Arizona on Saturday, October 29.
Paul was ahead on all the scorecards heading into the eighth when he slumped Silva onto the canvas with a neat flurry which ended in a well-placed right hand.
After the fight, the pair both bowed to each other before embracing for a photo in what was a refreshing sign of respect between a YouTube-made fighter and an icon of martial arts.
“Man it’s a surreal moment but hard work pays off,” Paul said. “I want to say thank you to Anderson, he inspired me to be great. Without him, we wouldn’t have a fight this year. I have nothing but respect for him. I started boxing two and a half years ago and I’ve just beaten one of the best strikers ever.”
Paul, 25, was looking for his sixth professional win against Silva having previously beaten fellow content creator AnEsonGib, NBA star Nate Robinson and former MMA champions Tyron Woodley and Ben Askren.
Some criticized his decision to take on yet another retired fighter after seeing high-profile bouts against Tommy Fury and Hasim Rahman JR fall through.
But, although Silva was ultimately the less productive of the two fighters, he still tested Paul’s reserve with a selection of stiff uppercuts and neat combinations against the ropes.
However, it was the younger and fresher of the two that claimed the day as the judges scored the contest 77-74, 78-73, 78-73 in Paul’s favor – capping off another successful evening for Most Valuable Promotions.
Silva’s spirited showing wasn’t enough to silence the doubters. One Tweeted: “Jake Paul crying after beating yet another 40-year-old retired man instead of fighting someone his age.”
To which his brother, Logan, replied: “Jake tried to fight two boxers this year on separate occasions (Tommy Fury, 23 years old, 8-0, AND Hasim Rahman JR, 31 years old, 12-1) and they BOTH BACKED OUT.
“A combat legend was the only one willing to take the challenge. Shut the f*ck up.”
Paul also gained further support from fellow YouTuber Deji, who coincidentally was his first-ever opponent. He said: “I can’t lie, I’m super impressed with Jake Paul! Fair play.”
Deji will soon step into the ring with a retired legend himself, taking on Floyd Mayweather Jr on November 13, 2022, at the Coca-Cola Arena in Dubai.
For Paul, it seems a long-awaited grudge match with Deji’s brother, KSI, may soon await. Bring it on!