A Timeline of Jake Paul’s Rise in Boxing

Jake Paul has become a cultural phenomenon. The 24-year-old is not just a YouTuber anymore—he’s also an actor, rapper, & rising star in the boxing world.

Jake Paul first round knockout

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Jake Paul first round knockout

If you didn’t know, Jake Paul is sort of taking over boxing. While it’s unconventional and not the norm for the sport, he’s clearly making an impact when he fights. Just look at the PPV numbers for his latest fight with Askren. Paul reportedly pulled in over $60 million, FWIW. So, at this point, it’s impossible to ignore the impact he’s having on the sport. 

The 24-year-old has become a cultural phenomenon. He’s not just a YouTuber anymore—he’s also an actor, rapper, and rising star in the boxing world. Paul had his first foray in the ring over three years ago and is now a name in the fight scene. It’s clear he is not to be slept on.

Let’s recount his rise to boxing respect.

February 2018: The Initial Fight

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This all started with a bunch of YouTube trash talk. It involved Jake Paul and his older brother, Logan. They agreed to fight two fellow YouTube star brothers—KSI and younger brother Deji.

Jake defeated Deji in the fifth-round via technical knockout after Jake started unloading on him against the ropes. (KSI and Logan later fought to a draw.)

“I feel amazing,” Jake Paul said afterward. “I have worked so hard for this. Deji fought an amazing fight. I hope he learnt a lesson about what he said about my family.

“No hard feelings, but I feel amazing. It has been a tough year for me, and this fight was fighting against all of those things, it was putting my heart on the line and overcome these things.”

January 2020: Paul Goes Pro

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Paul’s profile started rising. He booked another fight against YouTuber Gib for his second battle. This marked Paul’s professional boxing debut, as Paul and Gib fought as the co-feature on the Demetrius Andrade-Luke Keeler championship card.

This one didn’t last nearly as long as Paul’s first fight, though. Sporting gold trunks, he took Gib out at 2:15 in the first, again via TKO.

It was starting to become clear that Jake Paul’s abilities were no joke. Despite starting as a YouTuber, this guy was becoming a real boxer.

June 2020: Hospitalized by Ryan Garcia

Ryan Garcia Luke Campbell 2021

July 2020: The Infamous Nate Robinson Knockout

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Paul’s third fight was the one that really solidified his reputation. He squared off with former NBA player Nate Robinson, the Dunk Contest legend, on the undercard of the much-hyped fight between two legends: Mike Tyson and Roy Jones Jr.

The event got pushed from August to late November, so fans grew antsy, but it proved to be worth the wait—or, at least the Paul-Robinson fight did. At 1:24 in the second round, Paul completely decimated Robinson, sending him falling onto his face, putting him to sleep, and generating one of the most memorable boxing moments in years. It inspired a flurry of memes.

April 2020: Askren Becomes Latest Victim

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After the Robinson fight, Paul was getting challenged left and right. Everyone wanted a piece of the hype.

One of those challenges came from an MMA legend, the former Bellator and ONE champion Ben Askren. In December 2020, Askren was tabbed as Paul’s next opponent. 

Many thought Askren would come out on top—though he’s 36. UFC boss Dana White even said he’d wager $1 million on Askren. Paul, confident of victory, was more than happy to accept that bet.

His self-assuredness proved warranted as they dueled in Atlanta. Paul absolutely cruised to victory via first-round TKO, knocking Askren onto his back and sending him into a spiral of dizziness. Paul improved to 3-0 as a pro and took down his first real, legitimate fighter.

“I told y’all I was gonna do it in the first-round,” Paul said. “I told y’all I’m a real fighter. I don’t know how many times I’ve gotta prove myself that this is for real.”

It was an emotional fight for Paul, whose security guard, Shadow, had died 10 days prior.

The fight reportedly generated 1.5 million pay-per-view buys, which manifested in a huge payday for Paul: $75 million. Though his fight purse was less than $1 million, the YouTuber is cashing out in a huge way because of his transition into boxing.

Nonetheless, he recently said he’s not fighting to make money, but because he loves it.

So...who’s got next? A few names are in the mix: Andrade; Conor McGregor’s training partner, Dillion Danis; and even Tommy Fury.

I’m ready to give the people what they want. @jakepaul

— Tommy Fury (@tommytntfury) April 18, 2021

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