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KSI explains why he hates Jake Paul: ‘I just think he’s a d***head’

KSI on The MMA Hour

KSI may be partners with his brother, but don’t expect him to be friends with Jake Paul anytime soon.

Primarily a YouTuber and rapper, KSI has spent much of the past few years building up the emerging influencer boxing scene that he helped create. In that time, he has repeatedly butted heads with Jake Paul, generally on the topic of who would win in a fight. But, as KSI explained to Ariel Helwani on The MMA Hour, it’s not just about ego; he also just doesn’t like the man.

“I don’t know, we’ve kind of just hated each other for so many years,” KSI said. “I think there are several reasons, but because I don’t really dwell on it until it’s time, so I don’t really know.

“I think it’s ego. It’s one of the ones where he thinks he’s better than me, I think he’s trash, and I believe — I know everyone else doesn’t believe, and a lot of people believe that he’s going to destroy me, but I know what I am, and I know what I’ve done training wise, and I know I would smoke Jake. But I kind of need to show everyone what I know. And through me fighting people like Woodley and Temperrr...all these people in the atmosphere, people then will start to believe that I’m actually about it.

“We just don’t see eye to eye,” he continued. “I just think he’s a d***head. I just don’t think he’s a good person. I know he’s got friends, I know he’s got a lot of people that like him, but there’s a lot of people that hate him, and I’m one of them. I just don’t like him. I just don’t like everything about him. And I feel like he also tries to s*** on everything that I have done, or that I have worked hard for. When I look at him I go, ‘Compared to what you’ve done, to me, you are not on my level, but I’m still going to show you.’ Someone who is devoting all their time into boxing, I can still come from all my music tours, all my YouTube videos, all my Sidemen videos, whatever, my Prime, etc., I can come into your realm and still knock you out.”

As the two biggest names in influencer boxing, it seems inevitable that at some point, KSI and the younger Paul will finally settle their differences in the cage. KSI himself suggests that is his “ultimate” goal in boxing, however, he believes that actually getting it to happen is going to take lots of effort.

“We’re working on it,” KSI said. “We’re looking like November, December. I just know it’s going to be a long back and forth with negotiations. Who is the A-side, size of the ring, what’s the weight, or what’s the purse? Is it going to be on DAZN, or is it going to be on Showtime? There’s just a lot of back and forth when it comes to these things. It’s one of the ones where it’s happening, slowly, but I’m just focusing on knocking out Temperrr and knocking out my next opponent and eventually getting to Jake.”

Things did recently get slightly more complicated for a potential KSI vs. Paul booking: Paul signed an MMA deal with the PFL. While the deal does not figure to actually restrict Paul from pursuing his boxing interests, it does add another layer of complexity to negotiations, particularly if Paul’s time becomes wrapped up in MMA. But KSI is skeptical about his rival’s commitment to the PFL and MMA.

“If I’m truly being honest, I feel like he feels he needs to have a stake in something, because he sees what I’m doing with Prime and he’s seeing Misfits, he sees that I’ve got so many baskets, and he’s just there like, ‘I just box and that’s it,’” KSI said. “So I feel like he wanted to just have a stake in something to be like, ‘I have a percentage in something.’

“Is he going to actually fight MMA? I’ll probably say he won’t, but he’ll probably try to prove me wrong. But he’ll fight some scrub, who doesn’t know how to punch and grapples terribly. He’ll probably fight, who was that wrestler that did terribly in the UFC? [CM Punk]. He’ll probably try to fight someone like him.”

In the end, regardless of the roadblocks, KSI does believe he and Paul will eventually get to settle their differences and, unsurprisingly, the British YouTuber is adamant he will shock the world and “flatline” Paul. Then it might be onto bigger game.

“I was thinking, after I flatline Jake, how cool would it be to have a go at the king, [Conor McGregor]?” KSI said. “I believe in myself so much, that I think I can take on anyone, within reason. ...

“You never know. But I’m always down. If it makes sense and it really excites me, and if I’m there — for me, legacy is my word. ... It’s the reason why I do everything. So if I’m there like, ‘Yo, this would be crazy for my legacy!’ But it’s not like I want to just fight and get money. No. I want to fight and win, bro. Because that is special. Cool, taking part is dope, but winning? Nothing can compare.”

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