Jake Paul shocked the entire fighting world this past weekend when he knocked former UFC fighter Ben Askren out in the first round of their boxing match.
After the fact, many wondered if the entire thing was rigged.
Video from after the event only poured more gasoline on the flames.
So was the whole thing rigged?
As far as Askren is concerned, the answer to whether or not he threw the fight against Paul comes down to common sense.
What would he gain by doing so?
“I think in fact I would lose a lot,” he told Ariel Helwani. “That’s not something that would ever cross my mind.”
Askren also admitted that part of what cost him the fight against Paul was his MMA training.
“I wanted people to throw overhand rights because that’s generally the easiest punch to get a takedown off of,” he said. Unfortunately, there are no takedowns to be had in boxing.
— Game 7 (@game7__) April 19, 2021
Will Askren’s comments quell the rumors that this bout was fixed? Probably not. Even former UFC champ Daniel Cormier doesn’t think it was on the up and up.
But Askren likely doesn’t care. He was handed $500,000 just to show up, and if he gets any sort of cut from PPV dough, he’s likely going to be swimming in cash once distributions are made.
Whether people like it or not, Paul won fair and square. And this schtick of him being a real fighter isn’t going away any time soon.
Jennifer Withers Hoey is a former Business Development Manager who transitioned to writing about sports. With valuable connections all over the West Coast, she has used those contacts to break some of the most interesting stories pertaining to the Portland Trail Blazers, Oregon Ducks, LA Lakers, LA Clippers, Seattle Supersonics (RIP), and more.