Jake Paul is scheduled to fight Hasim Rahman Jr. on Aug. 6 at Madison Square Garden, but the YouTube star-turned-boxer already is eyeing another high-profile opponent: Conor McGregor.
Paul insisted Monday on “The MMA Hour” with Ariel Helwani that a fight against McGregor has “got to happen,” as there’s too much financial incentive for the combat sports stars not to square off.
“Why not? He’s a businessman, I’m a businessman, and that’s $75 (million) to $100 million for both of us,” Paul told Helwani.
Well, McGregor caught wind of Paul’s latest challenge and wasted little time in responding via Twitter.
“(crying laughing emoji) you’ve 2 fights and done 70k buys,” McGregor tweeted.
“You are a flop, kid. A nobody,” he then added in a second tweet.
Paul sure has had an interesting professional boxing career to date, defeating fellow YouTuber AnEsonGib and former NBA player Nate Robinson via knockout before turning his attention to a pair of mixed martial artists in Ben Askren and Tyron Woodley. Paul knocked out Askren in the first round in April 2021 and beat Woodley twice, first via split decision in August 2021 and then via a brutal sixth-round KO in December 2021.
Paul had been scheduled to face Tommy Fury, half-brother of heavyweight champion Tyson Fury, but that fight now has fallen apart on two separate occasions, paving the way for his upcoming showdown with Rahman Jr., son of former heavyweight champ Hasim Rahman.
A fight with McGregor undoubtedly would represent Paul’s biggest fight yet from a popularity standpoint, given the combatants’ combined star power, but it doesn’t sound like the former is ready to sign on the dotted line anytime soon. And that isn’t sitting well with Paul, who responded to McGregor’s tweets by posting a video in which he absolutely shredded the former UFC champion.
“Conor, Conor, Conor, you’re more active on Twitter than you are in the octagon,” Paul said as part of an expletive-laden rant. “Stop taking Trenbolone and start taking fights. You’re more actively cheating on your wife than you are in the octagon. Your priorities are mixed up. Put down the bottle and get back to fighting.”
McGregor hasn’t fought since suffering a broken leg in his second straight loss to Dustin Poirier last July.
If McGregor ultimately faces Paul, it’ll presumably be under boxing rules, a la The Notorious’ fight with Floyd Mayweather Jr. in August 2017, but that remains unclear.