Paul was set to face Hasim Rahman Jr. in his boxing return on Aug. 6 before a last-minute cancelation. Paul and his team allege the called-off event was the result of Rahman’s attempts to renegotiate and change the weigh-in for the fight. This is all water under the bridge now, with Paul set to make his return to action tonight against Anderson Silva.
Paul hasn’t fought in the ring since a knockout of former UFC welterweight champion Tyron Woodley last December. He’s undefeated in his career and tops the influencer boxing rankings over other fighters such as his brother, Logan, and fellow YouTuber KSI.
Along with his fighting accomplishments, Paul wants to make a difference in how boxers are compensated for their efforts. He’s also taken repeated shots at UFC President Dana White for how the UFC handles fighter pay.
Atlas has taken a more welcoming route to Paul’s presence in the sport than some of his boxing colleagues. He feels that Paul has handled himself ideally for a relatively amateur boxing prospect.
Teddy Atlas Praises Jake Paul For “Walking The Walk”
During an episode of his THE FIGHT podcast, Atlas gave Paul credit when it comes to handling cancelations and making sure other fighters on the card were taken care of.
“When a fight falls out…before, they don’t get reimbursed,” Atlas said following the Paul/Rahman cancelation. “There’s insurance, the promoters take insurance, and they get something. I’m sure Jake had some insurance in place and whatever that is. But you never hear about these undercard fighters getting something for all the time and money they spent in getting prepared for that fight. You never, ever. I just wanna make sure I acknowledge this is unheard of.
“It’s partly because Jake is not a boxing lifer, but he’s new to the business and he said he wants to do things a little different. Everyone says that, and they’re all full of crap. This guy’s actually doing something different…this guy’s actually talked the talk, walked the walk. He’s actually doing something that’s unheard of that hasn’t been done before. And I think it’s because he’s new to the sport and he has his own feelings about it, he’s said that, and he’s actually living up to it. He’s gonna give 50% of the purses to these guys who wind up never getting in the ring.
“So I hope he stays in the business. I hope you’re successful in everything you do and stay in the business because we could use a breath of fresh air like you.”
Paul has hinted at eventually transitioning to mixed martial arts down the line and going as far as pitching a fight in the UFC. He’s focused on his boxing career at the moment but was recently seen practicing leg kicks in the gym before a potential move to the cage.
Many have questioned the sincerity of Paul’s intentions to make a difference in not only boxing but combat sports as a whole. On the contrary, Atlas feels Paul’s presence in boxing holds more pros than cons.
Do you agree with Teddy Atlas’ message to Jake Paul?