YouTube sensation Jake Paul maintained his perfect boxing record as a professional on Sunday. The 24-year-old defeated former UFC welterweight champion Tyron Woodley in Cleveland, Ohio via split decision.
Paul won the fight (77-75, 75-77, 78-74) in the main event of the boxing card on Sunday. The win took his record to 4-0, going eight rounds for the first time.
However, it was a defeat for Woodley in his first fight as a boxer after spending 12 years as an MMA star. Nevertheless, Woodley challenged Jake Paul to a rematch soon after the decision was announced.
The fight took place in Cleveland, Ohio, which is Paul’s hometown. It also led to NBA legend LeBron James, who is also from Cleveland, reacting to the fight. Paul later got emotional upon hearing that James tweeted about his fight.
Jake Paul maintains perfect record as professional boxer by defeating Tyron Woodley
Both boxers began the fight tentatively. Paul, who was the favourite heading into the bout, landed a few good shots on Woodley in the opening rounds. It was evident that Paul looked more comfortable in the boxing ring in comparison to Woodley.
With Paul dominating the opening stages of the fight, Woodley needed to get himself back into contention. The 39-year-old came out firing in the latter stages of the bout and landed a strong right hand which left Paul wobbling.
The young YouTuber was close to getting dropped but was able to regain his balance courtesy of the ropes. Paul then managed to get back into his rhythm and landed a few big punches of his own.
Eventually, Woodley failed to capitalise on his cautious approach at the start which cost him a genuine chance of winning the fight. Paul later declared that he had only respect for Woodley and showered praise on the former MMA star.
LeBron James and other sports stars react to Jake Paul’s win vs Woodley
Four-time NBA champion LeBron James also tweeted about the fight between Paul and Woodley. The Lakers star, who hails from Cleveland, wrote that he wished he was in his hometown to watch the fight live.
There were a total of 16,000 fans in attendance on Sunday, with an electric atmosphere at the Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse, which is also home to the Cleveland Cavaliers.
James won one of his NBA Championships and the Cleveland Cavaliers’ only title back in 2016. However, LeBron wasn’t the only superstar athlete to react to the fight. UFC legends Conor McGregor and Nate Diaz also highlighted their views on the bout.
McGregor’s cryptic tweet read, “Salivating”, while Diaz clearly wasn’t impressed by Woodley and Paul. It now remains to be seen whether Woodley and Paul will agree to a rematch. Woodley appeared to agree to get an ‘I Love Jake Paul’ tattoo in order to get the ball rolling once again.