This past Saturday night, we saw a special boxing attraction between a social media star turned boxer and a UFC legend. “The Problem Child” Jake Paul (7-1) was looking for arguably his biggest win of his career as he took on the tough and popular Nate Diaz (21-13 MMA).
Paul was coming off the first loss in his professional boxing career. Jake Paul fought Tommy Fury back in February and lost a split decision knocking him off the ranks of the unbeaten. Instead of rematching with Tommy Fury, Paul opted to take this fight against Nate Diaz and strike while the iron was still somewhat hot.
Paul was the big betting favorite and he looked that way in the first round. He blitzed Nate Diaz who is known to be a slow starter. It looked like he had him rocked and it honestly looked like the whole show could be over in the first round. However, Diaz who is known for his toughness, weathered the storm.
Paul would still go on to drop Diaz in the fifth round, but Nate Diaz would see the final bell. While Jake Paul was still boxing good in the later rounds, that is when Diaz started to come on strong as Paul started to get a little tired. I figured it could get incredibly dicey for Paul in the later rounds and at times it looked that way, but he maintained his composure and won his seventh boxing matchup.
Boxing or PFL next?
After the bout was over, Jake Paul called for a rematch with Diaz in MMA. Paul has signed an exclusive deal with the PFL and Paul is supposedly offering Diaz $10 million to take the rematch in MMA. For what it’s worth, Diaz is around -1200 on the opening lines for a potential MMA matchup.
A lot will come down to the type of deal that Diaz would have to sign in order for the fight to happen with the PFL. I broke down Diaz’s next options here. We know that Jake Paul will make his MMA debut sometime in early 2024 for the PFL. However, we don’t know if that’s going to be his next stop in combat sports or will he be boxing again.
In October, fellow social media star KSI will be boxing Tommy Fury. I could see Paul fighting the winner of that matchup before he steps into the MMA cage. That matchup will need to happen before anything is settled, but I’m fairly confident that Paul’s next opponent will be one of these three: Nate Diaz, Tommy Fury, or KSI.