Get your boxing tips for this weekend’s ultra-hyped clash between undefeated, motor-mouthed pair Tommy Fury and Jake Paul.
- Fury – 8-0 (4 wins by KO/TKO)
- Paul – 6-0 (4 wins by KO/TKO)
- Fury def Daniel Bocianski – Unanimous Decision (6 rounds) – April 23, 2022
- Paul def Anderson Silva – Unanimous Decision (8 rounds) – October 29, 2022
Final thoughts: This bout has been a long time in the making, with Tommy Fury and Jake Paul originally slated to square off in December 2021 before Paul withdrew due to a chest infection and broken rib.
Purists may wince at the profile afforded to this bout between two competitors who boast just 14 fights between them, continuing the trend of boxing leaning on celebrity and novelty to sell pay-per-view events. Nevertheless, Fury, better known for being Tyson Fury’s half-brother and for finishing runner-up on Love Island, and YouTuber and ex-Disney Channel star Paul are both yet to lose in the ring.
Paul, perhaps surprisingly, is a $1.80 favourite to defeat Fury, who arguably has the more respectable boxing background and certainly the better pedigree.
While both remain undefeated, neither Fury nor Paul has a list of particularly impressive scalps. Fury turned pro in 2018 and has crafted an 8-0 record with four knockouts – but just two of his opponents boasted a winning record.
The 23-year-old has had two fights in the past 18 months. He earned decisions over Anthony Taylor – who was in just his second pro bout – in August 2021 and Daniel Bocianski last April. The latter, under the bright lights of Wembley Stadium on the Tyson Fury-Dillian Whyte undercard, was a one-sided affair against an opponent with a 10-1 record, but who was thoroughly outmatched.
Paul, 6-0 with four knockouts, is yet to face a fulltime boxer. He KO’d basketballer Nate Robinson in 2020, then has exclusively taken on UFC fighters. He scored a Rd 1 TKO over Ben Askren, a controversial split decision over Tyron Woodley and then a sixth-round knockout in a return bout with Woodley, and a unanimous decision against MMA legend Anderson Silva.
While an accomplished boxer – and the only opponent of Paul’s with a previous pro bout under his belt – Silva was 47 years old when he met Paul in October. It was an entertaining clash and Paul jabbed and work the body well. Histrionics aside, the abrasive social media personality’s commitment to his ringcraft is hard to fault.
Paul has the power and skill to give Fury’s chin its first genuine test. Fury has grown up with the sport and training alongside the current world heavyweight champion has to have its advantages.
The rivals are both talking up an early snooze for the other, but as they come up against arguably the toughest opponent of their respective careers, expect an element of cautiousness from each corner. Fury has the edge in technical proficiency. But with so much at stake – a loss for Fury would be an embarrassment, defeat for Paul stops his career in its tracks – Paul’s experience in glitzier, higher-profile events gives him a potential advantage that can’t be overlooked.
Paul’s braggadocio and bluster has worked in his favour to date and will be unfamiliar for Fury, who is undoubtedly under more pressure.
In what will almost certainly be a fascinating showdown – if not quite a win for pro boxing’s credibility – I’m leaning towards this fight going the distance and Paul getting the result.
— ESPN Ringside (@ESPNRingside) February 15, 2023