Jake Paul passed his latest test in the ring after a convincing knockout win over Ben Askren. Paul has continued to demonstrate formidability in the squared circle. However, his comments before the fight shed light on a possible concerning issue.
Jake Paul knocks out Ben Askren
In the weeks leading up to Saturday’s fight, there remained plenty of doubt around Jake Paul‘s ability in the ring.
Paul answered those questions in his latest test as he knocked out former MMA star Ben Askren in the first round. The 24-year-old quickly controlled the match with his speed and strength that Askren couldn’t keep up in any capacity.
The win has drawn plenty of attention toward Paul, coming a few days after making some concerning comments
Jake Paul airs troubling comments that he has ‘early signs of CTE’
Jake Paul is only three fights into his boxing career, but he may already be dealing with one of the physical risks that come with the craft.
During the pre-fight press conference last Thursday, Paul voiced that brain scans have shown that he has early signs of CTE (chronic traumatic encephalopathy). (H/T Sporting News)
“It’s a dangerous sport,” Paul said. “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.
“I love this sport and wouldn’t trade it for anything else. And 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.”
Paul has since retracted his initial comments, but it’s a serious matter that can’t be overlooked. At this point, it’s a health condition that can only be diagnosed after the person has passed away.
CTE is an ongoing issue that has only seen things progress toward bringing awareness and increased preventative measures over the last decade. It remains a health problem that has no cure or treatment to prevent entirely.
Regardless of Paul retracting his statement, it’s something that his team will have to continue to monitor as he moves forward in his boxing career.
Eyeing Conor McGregor as his next opponent
Those possible health issues aside, Jake Paul’s latest win does put a potentially promising future ahead of him in the ring.
The question now becomes whether he will attract bigger named opponents. Conor McGregor’s name has been on the top of the list for Paul for the last several months.
The 24-year-old has gone out of his way to badger the former UFC light heavyweight champion on social media in several instances. Following Saturday’s win, Paul voiced to MMA Junkie that he only wants big-name matches and believes a McGregor bout just became “more realistic.”
“I don’t know” Paul said. “We’ll see. There are a lot of people. Honestly, when it comes down to signing the contract, these guys duck. Honestly we will see. The McGregor fight just became more realistic, like I have been saying. I just want to do big fights.”
Paul has certainly earned increased credibility with his latest victory, but there is no clarity if that will translate to McGregor taking him seriously. The next few weeks will tell if he will get what he ultimately wants in the ring.