Apr 15, 2021
Jake Paul vs Ben Askren Pre-Fight Press Conference Transcript April 15
Jake Paul and Ben Askren participated in a pre-fight press conference on April 15, 2021 before the event on Saturday, April 17. Read the transcript of their speech remarks here.
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Ben Askren: (00:00)
I showered for you guys today, I hope you guys appreciate that. I don’t shower very often for people for media day, but I did for you people today, all over the world.
Speaker 2: (00:09)
How are you, Ben?
Ben Askren: (00:09)
I’m doing pretty well. How are you?
Speaker 2: (00:12)
Good, thank you. So the first question I wanted to ask you is about the event as a whole, obviously coming from the background you have in MMA and the UFC, they do things a lot differently here in Triller. They’ve obviously got live guests, there’s performances around. What do you make of the whole fight week so far? Are you excited for the event as a whole, rather than just the fight at hand?
Ben Askren: (00:33)
Yeah I mean, for me it’s a fight, right? It’s not an event for me. If I was a fan or something, I might feel differently, but listen, I’m getting into a boxing ring, as funny as that sounds, and fighting on a Saturday night. So I’m not getting into all the hoopla and stuff, but I know the people who are… I have 10 guest passes and they are all very excited for Justin Bieber and some of the other people.
Speaker 2: (00:54)
And seeing the background you’ve come from in mixed martial arts, it’s very different to the boxing fight and I know that you’re very chilled out person. Do you actually dislike Jake Paul?
Ben Askren: (01:08)
I would say I’m more indifferent to Jake. I think there’s a part of me that still thinks what he’s doing is an act or a show he puts on. I’d say if who he acts like is his real person then yeah he’s probably kind of a shit person. But I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt, maybe it’s just an act.
Speaker 2: (01:28)
And if you…
Ben Askren: (01:30)
Hold on. Even if he was a shit person, I guess I would still be pretty indifferent to that. I mean, there’s a lot of shit people in the world.
Speaker 2: (01:36)
And if you were to win on Saturday, a lot of people thank you because there’s a lot of hatred towards Jake Paul. Would you prefer, although it does sound very strange, would you prefer to win on Saturday than lose to Jorge Masvidal in the manner you did?
Ben Askren: (01:53)
Wait sorry, that was kind of a confusing question. Can you say it one more time?
Speaker 2: (01:57)
Would you prefer to win on Saturday night and have a lot of praise from people who disliked Jake Paul? Or would you prefer that win over Jorje Masvidal?
Ben Askren: (02:07)
That’s good. I would pick, obviously if I could rewind history to beat Masvidal, because I mean, Masvidal is fighting for the UFC title, and that was pretty much the only belt in mixed martial arts that I didn’t win. So I would obviously reverse that.
Speaker 2: (02:20)
Ah, thank you. Cheers.
Speaker 3: (02:23)
All right. Thanks very much. Next I have Theo [Saloon 00:02:26], Theo.
Speaker 4: (02:29)
Hey, how’s it going? So first things first, I appreciate you for showering. I know we can’t smell you, but you look clean and that’s nice.
Ben Askren: (02:37)
Actually, you know what? I don’t wear deodorant, and I don’t have body odor. So even though my hair might be messy, you will never ever smell me, because body odor doesn’t exist on me.
Speaker 4: (02:49)
All right. That’s good to know for the future.
Ben Askren: (02:51)
I’m not lying. I’m not lying. That’s the truth, you can ask my wife.
Speaker 4: (02:54)
All right. Maybe if we get her up next. So my question, you mentioned the hoopla and not thinking of it as an event. Obviously you’re very experienced with pre-match trash talk and stuff. But I’m wondering, have you noticed another level to this, I guess you could call it with social media and going up against an influencer who’s so present on social media?
Ben Askren: (03:27)
No, I haven’t. I actually think we should probably have our contracts reversed. I’m sure Jay’s getting some type of pay per view bonus, and I’m carrying the fucking promotion to this fight. Jake ain’t promoting shit. You go look at a fight on TV, Jake’s got 50,000 views and I got 1.2 million. Triller, maybe they could send me a couple of million dollar bonus afterwards, because the promotion of is fight is squarely on my shoulders, Jake’s not doing his job.
Speaker 4: (03:53)
So you’d say he’s not talking enough trash in advance.
Ben Askren: (03:58)
Yeah. Not talking enough trash, and the trash he does talk, it’s very poor.
Speaker 4: (04:03)
All right. Got you. I appreciate you.
Speaker 3: (04:07)
All right. Next. We have Boxing Social.
Speaker 5: (04:11)
[Aims 00:04:11] Here for Boxing Social in association with Bedford. How you doing Ben, you all right?
Ben Askren: (04:14)
I’m doing pretty well.
Speaker 5: (04:16)
Good. Good to hear. You fought in your recent fights, well it will be Jake Paul coming up the weekend, and you’ve had Jorge Masvidal, that’s two big personalities. Out of the two, who would you say has been harder to deal with?
Ben Askren: (04:31)
Deal with in what way?
Speaker 5: (04:32)
Mentally, in terms of approaching the fight, everything encompassed in dealing with the fight in general.
Ben Askren: (04:39)
I kind of deal with everyone the same way. I try to make it as similar as possible every single fight, and that’s same with this week.
Speaker 5: (04:47)
You said as well leading up to this fight, this is essentially for you a one and done, but there’s a small chance that you could continue fighting on. Can you give me an example of what that small chance means in fight terms, like who would have to be in the pit for you to fight on?
Ben Askren: (05:02)
Yeah, I don’t really intend to box after Saturday night, but no it’s not a who question. It’s how much question. Is Triller going to recognize that I’m going to sell him a million pay-per-views and cut me a Conor McGregor type check for the next one, because if they do, then I would consider doing it again. And if they don’t, I love coaching wrestling and podcasting, that’s kind of my passion in life. I’ll probably just go and do that.
Speaker 5: (05:24)
Well, a Conor McGregor like check would include Conor McGregor, right?
Ben Askren: (05:28)
Oh, I can’t imagine UFC will… Well, Conor is a significantly better boxer than myself, and obviously Jake Paul as well. I would love to fight Connor McGregor in mixed martial arts. But again, I’m going to be retired and yeah, I just don’t really see all that happening. I’m just saying you asked me how I would do this again and how would we do this again is if they give me a very large amount of money.
Speaker 5: (05:49)
You have a weight on your shoulders from the people who…
Ben Askren: (05:54)
I don’t feel it.
Speaker 5: (05:55)
Well, from the people who really dislike Jake Paul, they count on you to count him out of the boxing game. Do you realize that feeling from some of the fans?
Ben Askren: (06:04)
Yeah. I mean, I honestly think most fans are more invested in the result of this belt than I am. I mean for me, I think actually the biggest negative comes from winning, because if I beat Jake Paul’s ass, I’m going to be world famous. And I ain’t really trying to be world famous. Like I said, I’m trying to coach wrestling and podcast and that that’s really it. So the result of that bout on Saturday night, obviously I I’d like to win, but I don’t really think it changes my life a whole lot either way.
Speaker 5: (06:35)
But you mentioned investments there, someone who’s invested heavily in this kind of interestingly Dana White is putting down a million on you, what’s your reaction to that million and you appreciate that support from Dana?
Ben Askren: (06:48)
Yeah. It’s good to have that support. And Jake Paul is tremendous in the fact that he even made Dana White like me, which man that’s that’s years, that’s took years to make it happen and he made it happen. So good job, Jake Paul.
Speaker 5: (07:01)
And finally look, you’ve had your injuries in the past, the hip most notoriously. Are you as injury free as you can be coming to this fight, can we see the best Ben Askren we expect to see coming into this fight?
Ben Askren: (07:13)
I’m as healthy as I have been for a while, yes. But obviously I can’t stand it when some 36… Athletes in the late thirties say “This is the best I’ve ever been.” I’m like, bullshit. Give me 24 year old myself back again, I’d love to have that. But I am injury free and I feel great, so I’m ready to fight on Saturday night.
Speaker 5: (07:34)
All the best, Ben. Pleasure speaking to you.
Ben Askren: (07:36)
Speaker 3: (07:38)
Great. Next we have Shakiel Mahjouri. Go ahead, Shakiel.
Ben Askren: (07:48)
Speaker 3: (07:56)
Shakiel? Might be on mute.
Ben Askren: (07:58)
He doesn’t want to ask a question.
Speaker 6: (07:59)
Hey Ben, can you hear me?
Ben Askren: (08:01)
I can hear you, what’s up?
Speaker 6: (08:05)
Sorry, a little delay on my end here. Perfect. First of all, when you look at the metrics for any videos that you’ve been in between…
Ben Askren: (08:17)
Oh, Shakiel’s going out again.
Speaker 6: (08:20)
Hello? One, two, three. Oh, there we go. Sorry about that, guys. All right first, Ben. When you look at the metrics for this fight, whether it’s you on food truck diaries, or you on Logan Paul’s podcast, it’s amazing. The traffic has been terrific. I know you got into this fight mostly just to beat someone up for an easy payday, but are you starting to see the long-term benefits of this in terms of growing your audience for things like your podcast?
Ben Askren: (08:49)
Well yes, my audience is growing and I’ve already commented that I’m carrying the approach to this fight and Jake Paul’s not doing his job. But I don’t want to be famous. Yeah, my audience is growing like crazy and the numbers are always, you said food truck diaries. I think someone showed me it’s the second most watched food truck diaries ever. I’m already really high up on the Logan Paul podcasts for being one of the most watched ever, and it’s been one week. And you know what I think? I think it all points to, and I don’t want to be famous, but it points to the fact that there’s so many not authentic people in the world. And when someone’s just real with them, when someone just really says how we feel from the bottom of his heart, people appreciate that.
Ben Askren: (09:30)
And I think that’s kind of the biggest thing that’s coming through is people thought maybe it was bravado or something. No, I’m just being me, and I’ve been me for the last 20 years. And we don’t see a lot of real people in the world and the authenticity people appreciate.
Speaker 3: (09:45)
Thanks very much. Next is Anna Corby. Anna?
Speaker 7: (09:55)
Hi, Ben. I’m been surprised
Speaker 6: (09:55)
We have a delay on my end here. I was watching the impulsive episode, and at the end Jake puts out this video.
Ben Askren: (10:04)
Oh, so bad.
Speaker 3: (10:05)
Sorry. We’ll get back to Shakiel [inaudible 00:10:08].
Ben Askren: (10:09)
Speaker 7: (10:11)
Oh, sorry about that. Yeah, I’m sure that was going to be a great question, Shakiel, so hold it. But Ben, I’m surprised I’m able to ask you this question. I thought it would be the first one asked. Were you playing everyone with the sparring footage going into this so that you could stun everyone at the open workouts yesterday, because that’s what I’m reading on social media. People are amazed at how good you looked yesterday.
Ben Askren: (10:32)
Yeah. No, I actually have not, right? But, and again, this goes to the authentic point. When I signed the Jake Paul fight I was sitting on the fucking couch for 15 months. But when I got done with the UFC in October of 2019, I remember I tried to go do some private lessons, and it was just literally too painful and I couldn’t do it. So I had been doing some yoga and some bicycle, and then after my surgery I did nothing.
Ben Askren: (10:57)
And so literally I started putting out footage of me hitting nothing for 15 months, not working out for 15 months. And it was not pretty, and I just knew I had faith in myself that if I put my mind to it for 11 weeks, it’s going to get a lot better, and it got a lot better. And then you combine that with the fact that I’d never actually focused on boxing, and I’m a quick learner and I tend to be good at those types of things when I put my mind to it. Yeah. Obviously you got a lot better product in week 11 than you did in week one.
Speaker 7: (11:28)
Jake has made your wife a bit of an internet celebrity, he’s also of course, made you even more famous than you were prior to this. Is there any part of you that’s win or lose going to be saying “Thank you, Jake, for the hundreds of thousands of dollars. Thank you, Jake, for helping my wife sell more houses.” Ultimately, are you going to be thankful towards Jake when this is all said and done?
Ben Askren: (11:49)
No, I don’t feel that way at all. Again, I will repeat this, this is probably the fourth time. I ain’t trying to get famous. I think that might be the most negative thing that comes from me winning on Saturday night. It’s just not a place I want to be in my life, and it’s actually… I’m feeling a little bit different. When I go on the street, I get stopped 10 times, and I’m a little bit anti-social. So I actually don’t love it. I got my 11 acres of my house and I have no neighbors and I’d go outside and I’d piss in my yard if I want to. And no one talks to me and everyone leaves me alone. And then I go coach my wrestling academies, that’s what I love to do. And so no, I probably will not be saying, thank you. Maybe thank you to Triller for making my bank account much larger.
Speaker 7: (12:35)
Yes. My last question is if people were going to bet on this fight, what would you tell them to go to the bookmaker and say?
Ben Askren: (12:45)
So I actually think betting on this fight is very risky, which hey, some people love risk. And I think a lot of people just want to say, I bet on this fight, because they want to have an opinion one way or the other. But compared to for me, just as a gambler, the fights that I want to bet on are the ones where I’m like, “I’ve seen these dudes fight 20 times. I know exactly what they’re going to do. I understand both their strengths and both their weaknesses, and I understand how they fit together,” right? When I look at MMA fights that I… I don’t actually gamble that much anymore, I used to gamble quite a bit. And I would win quite a bit. But this one, there’s so many unknowns. There’s literally so many unknowns. So if you’re gambling, you just love the gamble, which, hey, gambling makes everything more fun. So why not?
Speaker 7: (13:25)
Actually, can I squeeze one more in and ask, ONE FC, UFC or Triller, which is the best? I suppose you could say [inaudible 00:13:33] as well, I’d be surprised if that was your answer. Which is the best promoter to work with?
Ben Askren: (13:39)
Hm. Yeah, I’m not going to answer that question because there’s not really an upside to me.
Speaker 3: (13:48)
Okay, great. Thanks so much. Next we have great Damon Martin.
Ben Askren: (13:53)
Oh, the great… I know Damon Martin. I know press saw him in Ohio one time in like 2014.
Speaker 8: (13:58)
Hey Ben. When we did our interview right after the fight [inaudible 00:14:03], I kind of joked with you about wrestling, Jake Paul and you said that wouldn’t be fun because it would last like 11 seconds. Did you see yesterday, Jake actually said he wanted to wrestle you. So will you accept that challenge and how quickly would that fight go?
Ben Askren: (14:17)
I cannot figure out… I always, always, always try to think of what is someone’s angle on this? I can’t figure out what his angle is. I don’t know. I mean yeah, if he wants to wrestle, we can wrestle. I mean, I beat up… I can go wrestle really, really high level people still and be very, very competitive, if not beat them. The notion that I couldn’t pin… A bad high school. I mean, let’s just put it… He wasn’t even good at high school wrestling. The notion that I couldn’t pin him in 20 seconds is hilarious.
Ben Askren: (14:51)
So I don’t really know what he’s angling at there, but the one thing it does make me think is makes me think, which I’ve kind of always thought, and this I guess would be further proof, that he realizes he doesn’t have a future in boxing, because if your goal was to be a great boxer, you’re not going to take a couple of months off to wrestle somebody. And I just think back to my time, and I’m a world-class athlete, and he’s Jake Paul. I remember my time in 2010, I tried to both wrestle and do mixed martial arts in the [inaudible 00:15:23] tournament, and it sucked and I was not optimal in either one, because I was splitting my time. So yeah, I don’t understand the angle there.
Speaker 8: (15:33)
Ben, when you started this training caveat, when you were striking for him in May, you were striking to set up take downs, you were striking to get to your wrestling, but you said that you had three months, you would have time to learn and adapt and grow. How much do you feel like you have learned and adapted and grown in your boxing over these last three months?
Ben Askren: (15:50)
You guys saw yesterday, right? I mean, read the comments on that video. There’s millions of views. Go read the comments. Yeah. People saw it, and my whole premise is I understand that I suck at this, but I understand I’m a world-class athlete, despite the fact that I don’t look like it, right? Sometimes can’t judge a book by the cover. And that I’m a world-class learner. I understand how to learn things really well. And just give me 11 weeks to try in this and I’m going to be way better. And that’s what you guys saw yesterday.
Speaker 8: (16:18)
And last one, during your mixed martial arts career, you faced off and had fun trash talking battles with a lot of people. I think going into this because Jake kind of became famous or YouTube and social media or one thought, oh, well this will be fun. He’ll engage with Ben. It’ll be a fun back and forth. But as you said, it’s been a little bit one sided. Have you been surprised that maybe he hasn’t been better at the trash talk, or did you just expect that when you actually got to know a little bit more about him?
Ben Askren: (16:45)
Yeah. Frankly, it’s been a bloodbath if we’re talking trash talk. It’s not even a 10 eight, it’s more like a 10 seven, or I don’t think we’ve seen a 10 six Martin mixed martial arts, but something like that. And it’s just this guy has… He only picks the lowest hanging fruit because his audience average age is 13 and a half. And the lowest hanging fruit, just isn’t going to work against me. You’re going to have to come with something creative or something intelligent. He just has lacked the ability to do so.
Speaker 8: (17:14)
Speaker 9: (17:28)
Hello, Ben, can you hear me?
Speaker 8: (17:30)
Yeah, what’s up?
Speaker 9: (17:31)
Hey Ben, this is Gabriel with Cage Side Press. You showered for us, but you didn’t bring the fancy rope today. Did you forget it at home?
Ben Askren: (17:40)
It’s up in my room. It’s nice and comfy.
Speaker 9: (17:44)
To ask you, I think one of the things that’s become very apparent is your to ability to handle a lot of personalities throughout your career, whether it’s talking with Jake, talking with Jorge, and what have you. What is your advice to fighters? Because they get that a lot, you got to talk better to sell the fight and make more money. What’s your advice to guys who are not as good at handling the pre-fight talk.
Ben Askren: (18:12)
So I don’t want to say necessarily the trash talk, but you have to have a personality, right? There has to be something that people are interested in in order to tune into your fight. The fight is just not enough, or in a few cases it is, right? But the majority of time it’s not, so create some type of personality for yourself. And then I would say on the second side is, I grew up… Muhammad Ali is my favorite athlete, and so he used psychological warfare to his advantage. And I can tell you unequivocally, whether it was my wrestling career or my mixed martial arts career, is that yeah, when the other guy’s really angry or emotional, it’s so beneficial. I mean, it really, really helps a lot.
Ben Askren: (18:52)
And actually, I told somebody that night and they pointed out, which is an obvious place, Jose Aldo versus Conor McGregor. Conor was so far under his skin, and that was the reason the fight was so easy for him is he made Jose mad. So not only would it be beneficial from a promotional standpoint, but it’s actually beneficial from a competition standpoint. And so yeah, go get started figuring it out.
Speaker 9: (19:18)
It sounds like it might be Eddie Alvarez will be the next MMA star jumping over to box somebody for Triller. I was just wondering, what are your thoughts on Eddie possibly getting in there to box Oscar De La Hoya in June?
Ben Askren: (19:33)
I love Eddie, because he’s a bitcoiner and I felt bad about his last fight, because I didn’t agree with the referee’s call it all. But I actually heard it’s going to be Tyron Woodley. That’s what I heard.
Speaker 9: (19:43)
I mean, what advice do you have for him? Obviously you guys have been really close, what is your advice?
Ben Askren: (19:47)
Tyron is a much better boxes than myself. I don’t got any advice for him. You don’t try to give advice to someone that your worse than.
Speaker 9: (19:59)
You’d said that you don’t like being famous and everything. Can I ask why? Because I think a lot of people would say, “Ben Askren, you’re kind of pretty good at being in the public eye.”
Ben Askren: (20:09)
Oh God, that’s what my wife says, too. She says, “I know you don’t want this, but you seem to thrive in that environment,” and to me it feels like a wrestling locker room where everyone’s just talking shit, and you roll off your back or some guy gets bothered so then you keep antagonizing him. I don’t know, I just don’t have the desire. And I guess in the case that I could give positive, I think I have a quote and I think I should probably trademark it at some point, but don’t tie your ego to your outcome. And I said that on a Steve-O podcast. And a handful of people have commented, I’ve seen it said something like, “Hey, that really affected the way I think about things.”
Ben Askren: (20:52)
And so, hey, if I could affect people in a positive way like that, I would love it. But I’m I think I’m borderline autistic actually, and I have very specified interests, and I can’t stand talking to people about things that don’t really matter to me. And I know it’s really bad. My wife gets upset with me about it, and she probably should, right? It’s fair. And so when people want to come up and talk to me about stuff, it’s just like, I don’t want to talk. I want to think about what I want to think about. I want to go coach wrestling. I want to do what I want to do, and I don’t want to talk to strangers. I know I sound like a total asshole when I say that, but I’m telling you my feelings. I don’t want to do that, I want to be able to go to the restaurant and sit down and eat, and not have anyone come take a picture. And listen so, I know I sound like an asshole, but I’m telling you my feelings and that’s how it is.
Speaker 9: (21:44)
Completely understood. My final question, Ben, who’s the bigger problem child. Jake Paul or Sean O’Malley?
Ben Askren: (21:52)
Oh, that’s a good question. Oh man. I don’t know. I don’t know them well enough to really comment on that, I probably have to do a more thorough research or their histories.
Speaker 9: (22:02)
Okay. Thanks, Ben.
Ben Askren: (22:02)
Speaker 3: (22:06)
Okay. Next up is Boxing Social.
Speaker 5: (22:11)
Hey Ben, I just had a couple more questions for you. You’re in this position with this fight, because you’re fighting Jake Paul, who’s built himself this YouTube empire as such. What’s your thoughts on that he’ll hustle that Jake has been going on for the last few years. Do you respect that? And just think there are lessons that fighters like yourself who are coming up should take lessons from Jake to get to where he is right now?
Ben Askren: (22:32)
What was the word you said? Heel hoss?
Speaker 3: (22:35)
That he’ll hustle. [crosstalk 00:22:38].
Ben Askren: (22:38)
Oh, I never heard that exact terminology that you were saying. No, I said earlier, I think it’s really important for fighters to understand that the social media and the trash talk and the personality it’s very, very important to progressing your career. And really when you think about it, I was talking to a baseball player yesterday. I said “This guy doesn’t have a big social media following,” he said, “Well, it doesn’t matter, if his batting average is good and he hit some home runs, he is going to get paid a whole bunch of money.” And that’s true with other sports. And MMA and boxing and whatever the fuck we’re doing this weekend, celebrity fighting, it’s just not true. It’s literally, if you can bring a bunch of eyeballs, they’re going to pay you a bunch of money. If you don’t understand that you’re a moron and someone should hit you in the head with a tack hammer.
Speaker 5: (23:24)
You said you’d been watching a lot of boxing in the lead up to this and looking to replicate some of the moves of some legendary fighters. Who have you watched and who have you been trying to replicate?
Ben Askren: (23:36)
I really liked how Tyson bit that dude. So maybe I’ll try to bite Jake.
Speaker 5: (23:41)
Any other fighters you’ve been watching?
Ben Askren: (23:44)
No, it’s just that. That’s it.
Speaker 5: (23:47)
And just finally from you, can I get your prediction please for the fight night?
Ben Askren: (23:50)
Oh, [inaudible 00:23:54], we’ll stick with that.
Speaker 5: (23:55)
Brilliant. All the best, then. Thanks.
Speaker 3: (23:58)
All right. And finally, we’re going to circle back around to Shakiel for his awesome question.
Ben Askren: (24:02)
Jerry Milani: (24:02)
… back around to Shakiel for his awesome question.
Ben Askren: (24:02)
Shakiel Mahjouri: (24:03)
All right, let’s try this again. Thank you, Ben. When you were on Logan Paul’s podcast, they played that Jake Paul clip and everyone in the room seemed uncomfortable.
Ben Askren: (24:12)
Yeah, for real.
Shakiel Mahjouri: (24:12)
Even his older brother. Have you noticed as we go closer to this fight that the public favor is swaying even more so towards you?
Ben Askren: (24:21)
I mean, from the first time we did anything, no one likes the guy. I was blown away. Not even as many people hate Colby Covington. I have, literally, never seen anything like it. I can’t say sway more, because I think it was swayed in the beginning.
Shakiel Mahjouri: (24:41)
We’ll leave it at that. [crosstalk 00:24:42]. Thank you very much, Ben, Good luck.
Jerry Milani: (24:42)
Thanks very much. Thank you, Ben. We’re clear.
Ben Askren: (24:47)
Wait. I’m not done. Can I say one more thing? It’s the microphone on?
Jerry Milani: (24:51)
Ben, you can see whatever you want.
Ben Askren: (24:53)
Okay, good. Listen, I fully intend to box on Saturday night, but Jake Paul is telling lies when he says my purse will be deducted for me doing a non-boxing move. That’s just not true. He made it up. I would just appreciate all you guys write that he’s telling lies. Peace.
Jerry Milani: (25:13)
Ben Askren: (25:14)
Maybe I’ll throw an elbow, you never know.
Jerry Milani: (25:16)
Thank you, Ben. We appreciate it. Coming up next will be Regis Prograis. He’s just about ready to pop in. Let me know if you have a question for Regis and we’ll cue you up.
Jerry Milani: (25:27)
Once again, tomorrow at 12:45 Eastern time is our press conference, Zoom press conference. [inaudible 00:25:34] talking about a June 5th [inaudible 00:25:37]. And then Saturday at 5:00, we’ll start bringing fighters after their matches. 5:00 Eastern time. And then the main four bouts begin at 9:00 PM Eastern time.
Jerry Milani: (25:47)
Jerry Milani: (27:57)
We’ll start with our first question. It is Gabriel Gonzalez. Go ahead, Gabriel.
Gabriel Gonzalez: (28:04)
Hello, Regis. How are you?
Regis Prograis: (28:06)
I’m good, bro. What’s up with you?
Gabriel Gonzalez: (28:08)
I’m good too, man. Thank you. My first question, people talk a lot about Jake Paul’s bringing in this new audience, this younger audience.
Regis Prograis: (28:16)
Gabriel Gonzalez: (28:17)
My question, have you felt that? Do you see younger people and all that just suddenly interested in this fight of yours rather than previous ones?
Regis Prograis: (28:26)
Yeah, of course. I definitely feel it. I mean, first off, starting off, I was at his brother’s fight. When I was over there, man, yeah, for Logan Paul and KSI in LA and the stadium was packed. It wasn’t the same regular boxing fans that’s always there. It was, I mean, kids I’m talking about 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15. Not with their parents, they all running around. That’s a big, big difference from regular boxing fans. I definitely feel it with this fight too.
Gabriel Gonzalez: (28:56)
There’s some people, they seem to get mad. It’s like, “Ah, what are they doing to boxing?” Now the real boxers have to fight for the quote “honor” of boxing. I mean, you’re one of the quote, unquote “legit guys,” is this a problem or is this just all a good thing? Because they’re bringing attention and bring money.
Regis Prograis: (29:14)
It’s all a good thing, man. When you’re bringing attention and bringing the money, how can you be mad? Right? For me, it’s a good thing. If Jennifer Lopez could have fought on this card, I’m pretty sure she would’ve did the same thing, and then what people would’ve said?
Regis Prograis: (29:27)
Listen, I think, for me, it’s a all-around good thing that you got somebody like Jake Paul that’s coming into boxing. They’re bringing more fans. I think it’s a good thing.
Gabriel Gonzalez: (29:38)
Regis Prograis: (29:40)
I’m sorry to cut you off. Even like the legends I watched, the hot boxing with Mike Tyson. He said that he likes it. Sugar Ray Leonard likes it. Tommy Hearns likes. For me, if I approve of it and if they approve of it, then the regular boxing fans should too.
Gabriel Gonzalez: (29:56)
My final question, you’re obviously fighting earlier in the night, what would be your message to those fans who are, “Hey, I’m going to show up for Jake Paul?” What’s your message for them to tune in early to watch you guys throw down?
Regis Prograis: (30:08)
I mean, you definitely got to watch me. You’re watching the card, you got to watch me, bro, because I’m a former world champion, I think. Yeah. I’m a former world champion. I’m going to go out there and do my thing. Everybody that know me, they know I bring the heat. Every time I fight, I’m going to bring the smoke. So definitely tune in for me because I’m going to do my thing.
Gabriel Gonzalez: (30:28)
Okay. Thank you and good luck.
Regis Prograis: (30:30)
Jerry Milani: (30:31)
Gabriel, thank you. Next up is Boxing Social.
Amos here for Boxing Social, in association with Betfred. How you doing, Regis? You okay?
Regis Prograis: (30:39)
Yeah, I’m good. Yes, sir.
Good. Good to hear. Is there a lesson here to be learned for boxers about promotion, self-promotion? Jake’s at the top of the card. He’s earning that trail of money as well. Should boxers be looking to learn from Jake and put themselves in the spotlight like he has done?
Regis Prograis: (30:55)
That’s a great question. Absolutely. I definitely think everybody should, man. You know what? I’m actually starting to do with myself now. You’ve got to invest in yourself. That’s one thing, all fighters when they’re coming up, people come to me on my Instagram all the time asking me what should I do? What should I do? I’m telling them, “Bro, invest in yourself, invest in your career. Just because you sign with a promoter, that don’t mean they’re going to promote you. You could promote yourself.”
Regis Prograis: (31:19)
Somebody that said that a long time ago, I never listened, was somebody like Adrien Broner. That’s somebody that, he sucks right now, he’s not that good, but he’s still getting big money to fight, basically, because he promoted himself. Right?
Regis Prograis: (31:34)
I think that everybody, every fighter should definitely invest in themself and promote themself. Self promotion, you have to. You have to do it yourself, right? Just because you signed with a promoter, at my level, you might fight two or three times a year, most of the time, two times a year. Outside of that, what are you? Who are you? Right? You’re just doing regular stuff. I think everybody should definitely self-promote themself and, yeah, invest in their career.
As part of the promotion of this fight, there’ve been talk about the sparring session that you guys had about a year ago. Can you tell us what happened in that sparring? Does that give you that confidence coming into the fight?
Regis Prograis: (32:12)
Oh, man, when me Ivan sparred, first off, you’re supposed to keep sparring, you’re supposed to keep that in the gym. But I’m not going to tell you about the sparring. When me and Ivan sparred, I walked in the gym one day, I was like, “You know what?” I talked to Shane Mosley, I was training him at the time. I was like, “Man, let me spar with no headgear.” Shane was like, “Nah, nah, you need to put the headgear on,” and this stuff. Let’s just say it was a good sparring session. He busted my nose. That’s what he said, which everybody who knows me, in sparring, my nose always busts. I think that’s what he’s counting on for this fight. I mean, [inaudible 00:32:45], let’s leave it like that.
I was speaking to Ben Askren moments go, we all were, and he said he might try to bite Jake coming in to this fight. But Redkach infamously tried to take a piece out of Danny Garcia and in their fight. Have you accounted for, prepared for any of those types of underhanded tactics for fight night?
Regis Prograis: (33:05)
Yeah, man, I don’t know. I haven’t, bro. You never know what’s going to happen, bro. He’s a little off some time. But, yeah, if he bite me, I might bite his ass back. Just know that. He bite me, I will fucking bite him back. That’s all.
If you come through this fight, how far away do you think you are from title contention? Are you looking at trying to win a title at super-light? Are you looking at welterweight? You’re at 142 for this fight, aren’t you?
Regis Prograis: (33:27)
Mm-hmm (affirmative). Yeah, 142 for this fight. Yeah. Yeah. I mean after this, we’ll see. We’ll see what happens, man. In boxing, you just never know the landscape. You never know how things are going to play out. After this, I’ll talk to my management team and see what’s next for me. But, yeah, I want to be a champion again at 140. We’ll see. But if they offer me something big and 147, we’ll see that also. I can do either one.
Is Broner still in the equation? Where’s the Broner factor here for you?
Regis Prograis: (33:55)
I think Broner is definitely still in the equation. That’s the fight I’ve been calling out for five years now. The Broner fight is definitely in the equation. I think it will be a huge fight between me and him. We both talk a lot, a lot, a lot of shit to each other, so I think that’ll be a real, real big fight. Yeah, after this, maybe it could be Broner, or maybe we’ll see. We’ll see who else.
Finally, I just wanted to get your thoughts on the mega-fight that’s coming up in the super-lightweight division. You’re looking at Josh Taylor, Jose Ramirez, just to get your thoughts on that fight?
Regis Prograis: (34:26)
Oh, man, I got Josh Taylor winning. I mean, I think it’s going to be a good fight. You can’t never count out Jose Ramirez because both of them have so much to fight for, both of them are fighting. Jose would be the first Mexican ever with four belts, and Josh Taylor would be the first person from Scotland with four belts. Both of them are fight for a lot. I think it’s going to be about will. But I think as far as skills-wise, Josh Taylor, he has more skills than Jose Ramirez. I go with Josh Taylor.
I wish you all the best at the weekend. Thank you, Regis.
Regis Prograis: (34:57)
Jerry Milani: (34:58)
All right. Thank you. Next up, we have Joe Lee.
Joe Lee: (35:03)
Hi, mate. How are you?
Regis Prograis: (35:05)
Joe Lee: (35:06)
Good. First question I have for you is, do you understand why you are on the undercard of Paul/Askren, or are you frustrated that it takes a YouTuber and things like that for you to be in? Does it frustrate you that people who basically aren’t pro fighters and your underneath them?
Regis Prograis: (35:27)
I’m not frustrated, bro. No, I’m not. I see what you’re trying to say. Yeah. I’m not frustrated because it’s just, listen, boxing is a popularity contest. Right? I mean, not the whole boxing, but it is a popularity contest. Right? More people are coming to see Jake Paul, so I’m not frustrated at all, bro. He’s actually helping my career, to be honest. No, I’m not frustrated at all.
Joe Lee: (35:48)
A moment ago, you said there was a potential for you to move up to 147. Other than the likes of Adrien Broner, what are the big names you would like to fight there?
Regis Prograis: (35:58)
Anybody, bro. I mean, anybody with a belt. I’ll be chasing belts. Somebody that want to fight is Danny Garcia, but I think Danny Garcia’s going to 154. That’s what I’m hearing. For me, anybody with a belt at 147, I’ll be chasing them.
Regis Prograis: (36:11)
Once I do go up, I’m not saying I’m going to 147 right now, I said that it depends. It depends on what’s going to happen. But right now, for me, sadly that’s my main focus. It’s not about what’s next. Right now, I got to focus on one person, Ivan Redkach.
Joe Lee: (36:26)
I know you said there’s more attention towards your fights when you’re on a Triller fight card, and it’s a bigger fight card as a whole. Have you genuinely seen a boost in your social media numbers and things like that in the build-up to this fight?
Regis Prograis: (36:37)
Yeah, definitely. For sure. Yeah. I’ve seen a boost in social media and stuff like that. People have been tagging all kinds of stuff. Kids and all have been following me and writing me. Yeah, I definitely see a boost.
Joe Lee: (36:48)
Last one for me, do you think this is the future of boxing? The performances from the likes of Snoop Dogg, the artists that are going to be on stage? Do you feel like this is the new wave and you’re going to be part of this?
Regis Prograis: (36:59)
Hopefully so. I definitely hope so. I told this story a few times already, but I had a fight in New Orleans and I have my own marketing team out there in New Orleans and we want to do the same exact thing. What we want to do is we want to bring all the local artists from New Orleans and have them perform. That would have brought a lot more people to the fight, but at the time Top Ranked shut it down, ESPN shut it down, and the Louisiana commission, they all shut that down. Now Triller’s doing the same thing.
Regis Prograis: (37:32)
For me, I think this is great for boxing. You got all these people. All these performers like Justin Bieber and Snoop Dogg and Dr. Dre and all these people that’s going to be here. All their fans, they might not even be boxing fans, but they’re going to tune in, and all my fans and then Jake Paul fans. All these different fans are tuning into is one event. Then everybody will kind of share of fans. I think it’s a great thing. I think boxing needed this for a long time, but Triller did it.
Joe Lee: (38:02)
Brilliant. Best of luck. Hopefully we’ll see you fight again in the UK very soon after that last fantastic fight with Josh Taylor.
Regis Prograis: (38:08)
Joe Lee: (38:09)
Regis Prograis: (38:09)
Jerry Milani: (38:11)
Thank you, Joe. Next up is Jake Bennet, MNR.
Jake Bennett: (38:16)
Hey, Jake Bennett here with Music, News, and Rumors. How’s it going, Regis?
Regis Prograis: (38:20)
I’m good, bro. How you doing?
Jake Bennett: (38:22)
I’m good. Thanks. You’ve talked before about how it’s been a hard road to make it where you are today, and you’re an inspiration to a lot of people out there. What do you have to say to your fans who aspire to reach the heights that you have in your career?
Regis Prograis: (38:35)
I mean, as far as for me, bro, I did an interview the other day, yeah, I made it and I had like a long, hard road to get where I’m at. You know? For what I would tell like upcoming fighters or anybody, just stick with it. You got to be consistent. You definitely got to be consistent. You got to give everything you got.
Regis Prograis: (38:54)
For me, I was working as a personal trainer for six to eight years, but I always believed in myself. I always believed in my ability. It was never a quit in me in. I know a lot of athletes and stuff, they’ll go to schools and tell kids, “You have to have a backup plan.” But for me there no backup plan. I’ll figure the backup plan after. If I have this, if I don’t have this, that’s when I’ll figure backup plan. Yeah. I just was all the way invested in my career in boxing. I was all the way invested in boxing. All the way. There wasn’t no failing for me. That’s why I got to where I’m at today.
Jerry Milani: (39:34)
All right, great. Thanks very much. Next up is Donagh Corby.
Donagh Corby: (39:39)
Regis, you’ve fought for so many great promoters, on so many great shows in your career. Can you tell us a bit about behind the scenes, how you’re enjoying working with Triller and I suppose Ryan Cavanaugh and Snoop Dogg?
Regis Prograis: (39:54)
Well, it’s great, bro. I mean, everything is great. I mean even the whole bubble thing going on right now. It’s just good. Of course, I fought for a lot of different promotions and all that type of stuff, but this is, I like it. I just like everything that’s going on here. I like the promotion. They run it smooth. Everything is good. I can’t complain about nothing.
Donagh Corby: (40:14)
It appears that they’ve got a lot of people. They’ve got some good boxing people involved too, but they’ve taken a lot of people from outside of the world of boxing. You’re not seeing any Bob Arum here. You’re not seeing any Lou DiBella here. It’s sort of new people to this space. Do you think that boxing kind of needed that from a new big promoter at some point?
Regis Prograis: (40:33)
Yeah, I definitely think so. I don’t want to talk shit about Bob Arum and Lou DiBella. Of course, don’t get me on that path.
Donagh Corby: (40:38)
No, of course. Yeah, those are examples I’m giving.
Regis Prograis: (40:40)
Yeah. But yeah, I mean, it’s always good to bring in new people. Right? It’s always good to bring in new faces and just new ideas. Like I said, with this whole Triller thing going on, it’s a great thing that we got this stuff going on because it’s new. It’s new ideas and you’re bringing in new fans. You can’t keep doing the same old thing. The world is ever-changing. You got to change with the world. I mean, like I said, I’m loving every second of this.
Donagh Corby: (41:08)
If you were to speak to people who were at the sports book this weekend, gambling on your fight, what would you tell them to bet on?
Regis Prograis: (41:17)
I would say don’t don’t bet because I’m I’m going to fuck him up anyway. Well, you know what I’m saying? The odds are fucking crazy. I don’t bet. I’m not a betting person. A lot of people saying all kinds of stuff, under one, under two, under three, all that. I don’t, bro. I just go out there and do what I got to do. I don’t worry about no bets and all that stuff. Some people they, not get in your head, but they’re like, all my neighbors and stuff, they’ll tell me, “Yeah, I’m betting. I’m going to bet this.” Bro, leave me alone. I’m going to go out there and do my thing. That’s what I’m going to do.
Donagh Corby: (41:46)
What’s the biggest one you’ve heard of? What’s the biggest bet you’ve heard somebody making on you?
Regis Prograis: (41:50)
I think like, shit, one round or something like that. I mean, as far as money-wise, I don’t know. But they’ll say one round or something. Bro, leave me alone. I’m not worried about that. I’m going to go out there and do me. I think we’re doing 10 rounds, I’m prepared for 10 rounds. I’m not worried about none of the other stuff.
Donagh Corby: (42:10)
Thank you very much.
Jerry Milani: (42:12)
All right. Thank you, Donagh. Thank you, Regis. We’re clear. Appreciate it.
Regis Prograis: (42:16)
Perfect. Thank you.
Jerry Milani: (42:18)
All right, everyone, at the bottom of the hour, we all have Jake at the bottom of the hour, or whenever he’s here. It might be before that, whenever he comes in. Just stay tuned. We’ll be right back with you.
Jerry Milani: (42:29)
Joe Leigh: (01:08:25)
… joining us today.
Jerry Milani: (01:08:28)
Cell phones. Mute your cell phones.
Jake Paul: (01:08:28)
All I hear is yelling. Hey. How are we?
Joe Leigh: (01:08:34)
Really good. Thank you. So first question, I’ve got, I know you’ve been calling out a lot of people. One of them is Conor McGregor. Someone else from the UFC who you’re actually mates with now, [inaudible 01:08:44], you never know the way the fight world works at the moment. He could be potentially stepping into a ring in a couple of years. If that was to happen, who do you think would win?
Jake Paul: (01:08:56)
It’s hard to say. I’ve never sparked against him. But obviously he’s a great striker, one of the best strikers in the world. And again, that probably wouldn’t happen for a couple of years. And I like fighting my friends. So probably wouldn’t happen. But yeah, I guess like you said, you never know.
Joe Leigh: (01:09:17)
I know you said you don’t like fighting your friends, but is there still a potential fight between you and Logan Paul? I know you teased that a couple of times.
Jake Paul: (01:09:26)
It depends what day you ask us. I think a lot of people will want to see that. I think it would be massive. But at the end of the day, our parents don’t want us to do it. And I don’t know if I would even want to do it. Sometimes we’re mad at each other and we want to punch each other. And other times, like right now, we’re perfectly getting along and supporting each other and everything. So the world may never see Jake Paul versus Logan Paul, but hey, you never know.
Jerry Milani: (01:09:56)
All right, next up is Jake Bennet. You’re up, Jake.
Jake Bennett: (01:10:01)
Hey, Jake Bennett here with Music News And Rumors. It’s going to be talking to fellow Jake. How’s it going?
Jake Paul: (01:10:06)
Yes, sir. I like that name. [crosstalk 01:10:09].
Jake Bennett: (01:10:08)
Your fame as an internet star precedes you going into this weekend. What do you have to say to people who think you might not be ready for such a high profile fight?
Jake Paul: (01:10:18)
Tune in and see if I am or not. Find out for yourself trillerfightclub.com, order that pay-per-view because if you’re not watching, you’re the one missing out. Look, I’ve dedicated the past 18 months of my life to this and we’ve been in serious training camp, sparring world champions. So you’re going to see if I’m ready or not.
Jake Bennett: (01:10:39)
I know you’re here for the fight, but there’s a lot of fanfare going on in Atlanta around the event. Have you seen the musical lineup and which artists are you most excited to see and maybe even meet this weekend?
Jake Paul: (01:10:49)
Yeah, I mean, that’s the beautiful thing about this event is that it’s more than just a fight. It’s entertainment all the way around. I’m excited for all the performances. I think each and every one of them brings a different genre of music and it’s going to be incredible. I’m obviously a Belieber, been a Belieber for awhile, so excited to see Justin perform. He’s obviously a boxing fan, which is where I think he did this. So hopefully we get to kick it after.
Joe Leigh: (01:11:25)
All right. And now next up is Theo Salaun. Theo?
Theo Salaun: (01:11:29)
Hey, how’s it going, Jake?
Jake Paul: (01:11:31)
[inaudible 01:11:31], man. Thank you.
Theo Salaun: (01:11:34)
Appreciate you taking the time. So you’ve mentioned kind of disproving the doubters and the haters and wanting everybody to in and kind of see what you’ve been working on. We’ve seen comments from people, like KSI saying, “Oh, do the world a favor and knock Jake Paul out.” I’m wondering, one, is all of that kind of hate fueling you? Is that a motivating factor?
Jake Paul: (01:12:03)
Yeah, for sure-
Theo Salaun: (01:12:03)
Hate fueling you, is that a motivating factor?
Jake Paul: (01:12:03)
Yeah, for sure. I use it all as gasoline in the gas tank to work harder every single day. And I know that going into this fight, and I know that for the past three fights I’ve had, is everyone wants to see Jake Paul lose. And that’s why I work so hard every single day, and surround myself with the best team, and take this so seriously, because this fight means everything. Losing is not an option, quite literally. It just isn’t an option in my head, and it’s not going to happen. And I’ve put in the work, and that’s why I’m confident in my ability, and confident that I will come out on top.
Theo Salaun: (01:12:41)
Yeah, I feel that. And then, are there any kind of comments or people in particular, that you have bookmarked in your mind like, “Oh, I can’t wait to show them wrong”?
Jake Paul: (01:12:52)
No, no, no. I think there’s a long list of people, I don’t really keep track of it. I’m excited for Dana White to lose a million dollars, but other than that, I’m going to prove millions, and millions, and millions, and millions of people wrong. And they have, like you said, motivated me to become the best version of myself over the past couple of years.
Jerry Milani: (01:13:19)
All right. Next up is Boxing Social.
Speaker 10: (01:13:24)
[inaudible 01:13:24] from Boxing Social and Associates, from Bretford. How you doing, Jake? You all right?
Jake Paul: (01:13:27)
Yes, sir. Chilling, enjoying the moment, man. This is crazy, headlining a fight at my third fight. It’s massive, Justin Bieber’s performing, and this could be one of the biggest pay-per-view events in history. So, just enjoying the moment. Happy to be here.
Speaker 10: (01:13:44)
I’ve got a couple of questions for you. Jake, this boxing path that you’re on right now, there’s this expectation from the fans who are watching this, for you to eventually fight KSI, it’s in the comments, it’s in the socials, for you to fight KSI. Have you had any contact with KSI in the leadup to this fight, and do you think he still wants to fight you?
Jake Paul: (01:14:04)
I don’t really want to talk about him anymore.
Speaker 10: (01:14:08)
Okay. And with that said, as you delve deeper into the fight game, you’ve been training, from the first time you put on the gloves to now, there are levels in the sport, you’ve got your domestic, international, world-class, elite. What level do you see yourself at now, and what level do you think people see you as?
Jake Paul: (01:14:31)
I see myself as an elite fighter right now. A young prospect with a lot of motivation, a lot of hunger. And I think people see me as a shitty amateur. So, there’s a sort of a big difference, and there’s a big gap in between where I’m actually at and what the general audience will think. But I’m excited, again, to show my ability on Saturday against Ben, who is a world-class fighter.
Jerry Milani: (01:15:06)
All right. Next up is Jeremy Herriges, Jeremy?
Jeremy Herriges: (01:15:12)
Hi Jake. How are you doing?
Jake Paul: (01:15:15)
Good, man. Good, good, good.
Jeremy Herriges: (01:15:17)
So, you were kind of talking about how people interpret you as a boxer, but the odds actually have you as the favorite right now. Do you think that’s a testament that people are seeing your boxing talent and taking it as legitimate?
Jake Paul: (01:15:33)
Yeah, someone asked me this yesterday. They were like, “How is the guy who’s 19 and two, an Olympic athlete, a two time NCAA champion, how is he the proposed underdog?” So, it is pretty funny that in my third pro fight, I’m coming in as the favorite against this guy who they’re calling world-class, but then the people want to say, oh, I’m not a fighter. I think people need to sort of make up their minds. But I’ve been putting in the work, and I think people can see that.
Jeremy Herriges: (01:16:06)
Looking at this from a strategic standpoint, you have several inches on him in height, reach and weight. How big of a factor is that going to be going into the fight?
Jake Paul: (01:16:16)
I think it will be massive. Ben is not used to fighting at this weight, and that’s another thing that people aren’t even talking about. They talk about his cardio being so good, but he’s lugging around an extra 25 pounds coming out of retirement. I’m ready to go into deep waters. He’s used to fighting guys his same height, Masvidal, I’ve been training with Masvidal, and it’s like I’m towering over Masvidal. That’s the type of guys that Ben is used to fighting. And people always say when they meet me, they’re like, “Damn, you’re big. You’re bigger than I thought,” all the time. And so, that’ll play a huge factor, and he won’t be able to get close to me. He won’t be able to do all the things that he’s planning on doing. He’s talking about coming in with defense and pressure, that pressure and him coming forward, is going to get him knocked out.
Jerry Milani: (01:17:08)
All right, Next up is Gabriel Gonzalez? Gabriel?
Gabriel Gonzalez: (01:17:13)
Hey, Jake. There’s been so much with the pre-fight and everything. I’m wondering, in your opinion, what is people’s biggest misconception about you?
Jake Paul: (01:17:25)
Everything. How much time do you have? People don’t understand me, they don’t get me. And I don’t think they maybe ever will. I have a tattoo on the back of my neck, it says, “I wish I could explain,” because I wish I could explain. If I could talk to you guys for hours on hours and become your friend, you would maybe start to understand me. And my inner circle understands me, the closest people around me understand me, my family understands me and they get what I’m trying to do. But the world doesn’t know who Jake Paul, and maybe I like it that way.
Gabriel Gonzalez: (01:18:10)
I think you’ve done a great job of getting people to tune in, you’ve done that with your performances, but also just the way you’ve promoted these fights. What is your biggest advice? Because obviously, a lot of these prize fighters want to do the same thing. They want more attention to make more money. What, in your opinion is the key to it? Is it playing into the heel role, is it having personality? What is it?
Jake Paul: (01:18:35)
I think just, yeah, being yourself. Look, it’s hard to give someone advice on such an intricate subject. I spent 10, 12 years of my life doing social media and marketing, and creating content, so it comes second nature to me. I’ve been doing it since I was 10 years old, so I don’t know, just maybe hire a social media team and put some content out, and grow your brand. Ryan Garcia does a great job of it. That’s really it, he’s the only boxer that does a good job.
Jerry Milani: (01:19:09)
All right. Next up is Michael Mariam. Michael?
Michael Mariam: (01:19:14)
Thank you, Jake. So, have you had a chance to take a step back and realize how far you’ve come in your boxing career so quickly? Just a couple years ago, you were just doing daily blogs and stuff, and now you’re fighting in one of the biggest stadiums in America. Have you just had a chance to step back and take it all in?
Jake Paul: (01:19:29)
I honestly haven’t. I think my team helps me reflect on where I’ve gotten to, and how far I’ve come, but I’ve just been going nonstop, and haven’t really had a chance to look back and be like, wow, that was that’s crazy, or this is crazy. I think it’s starting to set in a little bit, but it is pretty absurd. I’m in my third pro fight, fighting eight rounds, headlining one of the biggest pay-per-views that could happen this decade. If you look at Floyd Mayweather, his third fight was six rounds, he got paid $7,000, and I don’t think anyone in this room probably watched it.
Jerry Milani: (01:20:15)
All right. Next up is Damon Martin, Damon?
Damon Martin: (01:20:21)
Hey Jake, obviously you’ve said numerous times how seriously you’re taking your boxing career, but obviously this is the first professional fighter you’ve faced. Now, of course there’s going to be people who will say, “Well, Ben is a wrestler, not a boxer,” but do you believe beating Ben Askren will add some legitimacy to your boxing career, or does that even matter to you?
Jake Paul: (01:20:41)
Well, it doesn’t matter to me, but also I think people are going to make tons of excuses for him afterwards, which is great. Just like, again I bring up Floyd, but Floyd’s 50 and 0, and people still debate why he shouldn’t be 50 and 0, and the judges, and dah, dah, dah, and he shouldn’t have won this fight, and he shouldn’t have won that fight, and he picked the easy fight here. So, people are always going to have excuses, it’s part of this game. But again, that’s why they’re going to tune into the next pay-per-view, after [inaudible 01:21:07] to see me lose, or try to see me lose. So, it doesn’t really matter to me at all. And yes, Ben is the first professional fighter I’ve faced in a real fight, but I’ve sparred against 250 guys in the gym who are a lot better than Ben.
Damon Martin: (01:21:24)
In terms of your long-term goals, Jake, what are your long-term goals? Because I don’t think there’s anything wrong, if you went out there and fought in a million fights against Nate Robinson’s and made millions of dollars. I think people forget this is called prize fighting, but what are your long-term goals in this sport?
Jake Paul: (01:21:40)
I want to continue to challenge myself with my opponents, and continue to build up my level of competition, and to make history with historic events, and break pay-per-view records and fight big, big names. And just have fun, man, this is such a fun sport. This is such a fun time, and these events are so cool, and I want to bring more eyeballs just in general.
Jerry Milani: (01:22:10)
Next up with a followup, is Joe Leigh.
Joe Leigh: (01:22:15)
Yeah, just another one from me. I know you mentioned on the True Geordie Podcast a couple of days ago, about how specifically the UK fans have quite a disliking to you. Do you think you need to beat KSI in order to get more respect, or do you think a win on Saturday night, a lot more people can reason with you because of the hard work and the passion you’ve shown for the sport of boxing?
Jake Paul: (01:22:34)
I’m not talking about that guy.
Joe Leigh: (01:22:40)
Fair enough. Could I ask one more then? What’s your road to Conor McGregor? I know, I guess he’s the ultimate goal for you? How would you map out a road from now to there, how would you get there?
Jake Paul: (01:22:56)
I think we both are on a road to each other. He wants another boxing fight, he wants to fight Manny Pacquiao, He would get toasted, he just keeps on taking L’s. So, I think him fighting me would not only be his money fight, but it would technically be the easiest challenge, right? I think fighting Jake Paul would probably be easier than fighting Manny Pacquiao, and it would be just as big. And I think we’re a lot closer to a Jake Paul, Conor McGregor fight than anyone thinks. I think it could happen in the next 24 months.
Jerry Milani: (01:23:31)
All right. Next stop, followup is Shakiel Mahjouri.
Shakiel Mahjouri: (01:23:40)
Hey Jake, thank you for the time. Just one question for me. Ben Askren was here earlier, obviously speaking to us, and he said that he was carrying the lion’s share of the promotion, and that you weren’t really doing your part. Can you just sort of respond to that? Do you think you’ve put in at least 50% of the effort for promoting this fight? So, this guy has 21 fights, right? And all of a sudden, this is the biggest payday of his career, and there’s a reason for that. Ben Askren had his dick in his hand in Wisconsin, not doing shit. I brought him out of retirement, revived his career. And so, I think it’s hilarious that he thinks that. He’s under these bright lights in front of all of you because of me. I could have picked anybody, anybody to be in Ben Askren’s position. And everyone that I fight becomes a global superstar for 15 minutes, then I knock them out and no one ever talks about them again. So yeah, Ben Askren can think what he wants, he’s got about 48 hours left until no one talks about him anymore.
Jerry Milani: (01:24:51)
Great. Thank you, Shakiel. And next up is Theo Salaun with a follow.
Theo Salaun: (01:24:59)
Hey, Jake. So, you mentioned wanting to challenge yourself, but also have fun. And I know that you’ve got your eyes set on guys like Conor McGregor, but are there any more fun influencers that you are interested in fighting moving forward? Like guys on Twitch, or even TikTok or YouTube streamers, stuff like that?
Jake Paul: (01:25:27)
Yeah. There’s a company right now that wants to pay me an absurdly large amount of money to fight an influencer. So, I’ll gladly go knock out these guys for money. So, I’ve developed a skill now, and that skill is fighting. And if someone wants to pay to see my skill and use my name, which is one of the biggest names in combat sports right now, then I’ll gladly pick up the bag.
Jerry Milani: (01:25:57)
All right. Next up is Donagh Corby.
Donagh Corby: (01:26:01)
Hey Jake, I want to ask you about last Friday, your final sparring session ahead of this fight. You were in there with Charlie Deco who’s 3 and 0 pro, and the great Anthony, “Pretty Boy” Taylor, a famous internet troll, a guy in the MMA community who is divisive. Can you talk to me a bit about your final sparring session with the great Pretty Boy?
Jake Paul: (01:26:25)
Yeah, it was good. Like I said, these guys are all better than Ben. I think he was doing some interviews after the sparring session and was like, “It was good,” and, “He was better than I expected,” and, “He’s fast,” and, “I landed some good shots.” No you didn’t. You got your ass beat, my friend. And all respect to you, I know we’re not supposed to talk about sparring as boxers, but if you’re going to go out there and say it was an even sparring match, when we watched back the tape, it’s not even close. But of course he’s going to say that it was decent, and all this stuff, and protect himself, obviously that footage probably will never come out. And it’s he said, she said. But I’m getting the better of a lot of these MMA guys, and it’s funny to just see what they say after those sparring sessions.
Donagh Corby: (01:27:30)
Yourself and your brother’s relationship, obviously the public are always going to conflate you two. We saw him on the Masked Singer, they thought that he was going to be you. But it seems like he’s back in the mainstream after a few years in the wilderness, and you are paving this path in boxing, maybe he’s going to fight Floyd, maybe not. It seems like your relationship with him is as nicely separate now, as it probably has ever been. Is that a fair assessment?
Jake Paul: (01:28:01)
I think we’re yin and yang, and I think while we’re both individuals, at the same time, we’re on the same team. So, it’s this really weird parallel. And I think it’s the rise of the Paul’s 2.0. Who’s doing it?
Jerry Milani: (01:28:26)
All right, Donagh, thank you very much. Now back to Jake Bennett.
Jake Bennett: (01:28:33)
Hey, Jake. So, there’s going to be millions of people watching online, and it’s projected to break some big pay-per-view records, but is it strange for you to be at such a massive venue like Mercedes-Benz Stadium, even though there’s going to be an extremely limited crowd?
Jake Paul: (01:28:47)
Yeah, it’s weird. I wish there would be a crowd, the fight energy isn’t the same. When I knocked out Nate Robinson, the whole arena was silent, you could hear a pin drop. It’s weird, but obviously we’re making do with it. And hopefully for my next fight, we can have an audience and make it [inaudible 01:29:11].
Jerry Milani: (01:29:19)
All right. And now, we have Boxing Social.
Speaker 10: (01:29:23)
Hey Jake, a couple more questions for me. As you delve deeper into the sport, the risk gets bigger, you’re fighting Ben who has real fight pedigree. I saw one of your videos, you had a visit to the doctors who talked about the damage that you’ve received already. Are you worried about, as you take more risks, the effects you’ve experienced and what could come?
Jake Paul: (01:29:45)
Yes and no. It’s a dangerous sport, and that’s why when people question my dedication to it, it’s like, I’m showing up every single day. I’m putting my mental health on the line, my brain is on the line. like you said, I’ve gone and gotten brain scans, and have early signs of CTE. But I love this sport, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything else. I’m a fighter, and people will see that, whether it’s after Saturday night or whether it’s a year from now, they will see that I’m a fighter.
Speaker 10: (01:30:21)
Talking about dealing with things mentally, you have to deal with stuff in the leadup that’s including the loss of someone personal to you. Do you carry that into the fight, and are you dedicating in your performance to Shadow, who you lost quite recently?
Theo Salaun: (01:30:35)
Yeah, no, a hundred percent, man. It’s a shock to all of us in the team, and it’s deeply affected us. It’s hard without him. When you’re with someone every single day, and you live with them, and he was a father figure to me in many ways, and had my back 24 seven. And yeah, he’s gone now, and I’ve never experienced something like that before. But he would want me to go out there and knock this guy out, and he predicted a first round knockout in two minutes and 28 seconds. And so, for some reason, I think that’s going to happen. And man, yeah, I wish he was here. I wish he was here, but he will be here in spirit. And I think a lot of the emotions will sort of hit me after this fight, because I’ve been trying to suppress it to stay strong.
Jerry Milani: (01:31:40)
Next up is Damon Martin.
Damon Martin: (01:31:48)
Hey Jake, just a couple followups here. You mentioned you were kind of looking forward to Dana white losing a million dollars on this fight. Obviously, you’re fighting Ben Askren, a UFC veteran fighter, you want to fight Conor McGregor. Do you have fun getting the animosity with the MMA guys, or is it just like, that’s just the rivalries you’ve been building so far? What is it with you and the MMA community, that you’ve been so entrenched in that?
Jake Paul: (01:32:12)
I’m just having fun, and trolling. And I’ve purposely pitted the MMA community against me, so they tune into this fight. Ta-da, it worked.
Damon Martin: (01:32:28)
Is that, when you talk about your future fights, you mentioned Conor. Obviously that would be massive, but is Conor The only guy? I think you mentioned somewhere, that if Dustin Poirier beats him, you’d also be interested in that fight.
Jake Paul: (01:32:41)
Yeah. Conor’s the big name, he’s an A-list celebrity, and there’s very few fighters who are A-list celebrities. So, we’ll see what happens. I hope he wins against Dustin, I guess, so that the fight becomes more exciting.
Jerry Milani: (01:33:02)
All right, everyone. Thanks, that is our final question. I’m going to ask Jake to just remain at the podium for a minute. I want to thank everyone for taking part in today’s press conference. Tomorrow at 12:45 PM Eastern time, [inaudible 01:33:15] and friends, and Saturday five o’clock Eastern time is fight night for media. We will have that, press conferences after each fight, beginning at 5:00 PM. The feature matches, feature fights beginning at 9:00 PM on the pay-per-view, Eastern time. I want to thank everyone for joining us today on today’s press conference, and hope to see everyone on Saturday. Thanks, everyone.