Check out boxing tips and previews for Sunday’s showdown between the ever-controversial Jake Paul and UFC great Nate Diaz, who is making his pro boxing debut.
- Paul – 6-1 (4 wins by KO/TKO)
- Diaz – 0-0
- Paul lost to Tommy Fury – Split decision – February 2023
- Diaz – N/A
Billed as ‘Ready 4 War’, this showdown is sure to have the purists grimacing as the trend of boxing leaning on celebrity and novelty to sell pay-per-view events continues. Controversial social media star Jake Paul lines up for his eighth pro bout, taking on debutant – and Paul’s fourth opponent from the MMA universe – Nate Diaz.
After KO’ing basketballer Nate Robinson on debut in 2020, Paul 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.
Paul took a step up in quality by facing Tommy Fury in Feburary, ultimately losing a split decision in an eight-round encounter. The bout was marked by excessive clinching, but Paul impressed with his ability to pick up the pace in the latter stages and knock Fury down in the last round – but it wasn’t quite enough to win the battle on the scorecards.
DOWN GOES FURY 😱😱😱 #PaulFury
— Top Rank Boxing (@trboxing) February 26, 2023
Diaz has crafted a 21-13 MMA record with five knockout wins. His 15-year tenure in the UFC (2007-22) is perhaps best remembered for his dual 2016 bouts against Conor McGregor – winning the first by submission and losing the second by majority decision. He stepped into the octagon just four times after those high-profile showdowns, most recently beating Tony Ferguson by submission in September last year.
While not the most natural boxer to feature under the UFC banner, the 38-year-old’s footwork and endurance hold him in good stead here – as well as a lot more experience in the combat sports arena. But the latter factor is certainly not unique among Paul’s recent opponents.
A melee between the pair’s security personnel at the face-off ensured an extra edge of animosity between the adversaries. A potential rematch in the octagon also looms.
— Sportsbook Review (@SBRReview) August 3, 2023
Paul should have gained more valuable experience from his loss to Fury than any of his wins. And having gone at least into the sixth round of his last four fights, ‘The Problem Child’ has spent plenty of time in the ring over the past two years. Tolerate him or hate him, Paul has proved his boxing chops.
Diaz, a $4.40 underdog, is favoured to go down by knockout, but he is a ferocious competitor more than capable of going the distance despite the high likelihood he’ll be outboxed. For all his braggadocio and bluster, Paul is patient and well-rounded enough to go to the card to win this one.