Jake Paul receives a lot of criticism for his fighting career but perhaps the biggest argument used against his legitimacy is that he hasn’t fought anyone with actual boxing credentials.
That all changes on Sunday when the social influencer turned undefeated boxer faces Tommy Fury, who boasts a perfect 8-0 record in his own career while coming up under his father John Fury and famed half-brother Tyson Fury. While much of the attention will center around Paul facing a true boxer for the first time, UFC welterweight Matt Brown is quick to point out that a deep dive on Fury’s record doesn’t exactly inspire confidence in his legitimacy either.
“First and foremost, we say he’s fought some boxers — he fought one moderately decent boxer,” Brown said on The Fighter vs. The Writer. “The guys that he boxed, one guy he fought was like 2-100. His opponents were f****** horrible.
“The one guy that he beat that had a decent winning record was 10-1. All of his opponents were 3-36 or 4-10, terrible guys. How do they even get sanctioned to fight again? At some point the commission’s got to say find a new job motherf******.”
Fury’s eight opponents currently boast an abysmal 24-176-5 record overall with only his most recent opponent, Daniel Bocianski, possessing a real winning record of his own at 10-1.
Meanwhile, Paul hasn’t faced anybody with past boxing experience but Brown says at least the 26-year-old Ohio native has taken on real challenges against better, more experienced fighters.
“He hasn’t fought a legit boxer but what he has fought, as opposed to Tommy Fury, is world class athletes,” Brown explained. “Tyron Woodley is a world class athlete. Now whether he was motivated or training hard or in his athletic prime when he fought Jake Paul, probably not, but he’s still a world class athlete. I guarantee he’s a better athlete than any of those guys that Tommy Fury fought.
“I would argue that Jake Paul’s record is currently better than Tommy Fury’s, especially with the Anderson Silva win. I think Anderson Silva would go 8-0 against all those guys also.”
Brown concedes that it’s fairly common for boxers to have a padded record during the early part of a career — that’s just standard practice in the sport — but it still makes it really difficult to gauge if Fury is really that good or he’s just looked good beating up overmatched opponents.
“The difference is Tommy Fury has fought taxi drivers. Just useless opponents,” Brown said. “Sheep brought in for slaughter. Jake Paul has fought fighters. They’re not boxers but they’re at least fighters. These guys they have the heart of fighters. We know that. We’ve seen it.
“I have a hard time believing any of those guys Tommy Fury fought are real fighters at heart. They’re not warriors.”
As far as the actual matchup, Brown studied tape on Fury for the first time in the lead up to the fight and what he found was the former reality TV star was a little more impressive than what he initially expected.
“What I could tell Tommy likes the fight to be long, at a distance and kind of work his way little by little,” Brown said. “He likes his jab a lot. He likes to follow up his jab, basic boxing fundamental stuff.
“Jake likes a little closer, he likes to clinch a little bit more, bully you around a little bit. I think it’s really going to come down to who’s going to be able to implement their game plan. I have a hard time finding a pick here.”
While Brown isn’t ready to crown Paul as a serious threat to anybody near the top of the rankings across any division in boxing, he will give him credit as a decent boxer with real knockout power in his hands.
That might be the difference in the fight with Paul’s ability to crack Fury with harder shots over eight rounds to secure the win and remain undefeated in his career.
“I think if there’s going to be a difference maker, I’m like 55-percent over to Jake because he does have the power to hurt Tommy Fury and I’m not sure Tommy Fury has the power to hurt Jake,” Brown said. “I think Jake is probably going to be able to get in close and land some hard shots and wear Tommy out because Tommy seems to like to fight kind of pretty. I think Jake can make it a little bit dirty.
“I think it’s going to go to a decision and I think it’s going to be not a great fight. It’s not going to end with a good look for either person and I think the judges are probably going to lean towards Jake Paul. This is kind of where I’ve ended with my research.”