Over the past few years a number of bizarre contests have graced the boxing world. These begun with the so called ‘Money Fight’ between Floyd Mayweather and MMA superstar Conor McGregor, and more recently include a number of bouts between YouTube’s biggest names such as last year’s much-watched rematch between KSI and Logan Paul. While much to the dismay of boxing purists, who feel these contests make a mockery of their beloved sport, such fights never fail to draw the eyes of millions and generate vast sums of money for those involved.
In the past week, Floyd Mayweather has become the centre of yet another one of these crossover fights with rumours he is set to square off against arguably YouTube’s biggest star Logan Paul.
How the Rumours Began
The idea of this contest between a boxing great and one of the internet’s most well-known faces came to fruition last Wednesday when fellow popular Youtuber Keemstar tweeted, “Mayweather vs Logan Paul this year! No joke… that’s boxing insider just told me…”
As expected, there was plenty reaction to this announcement with many in the boxing and combat sports arena displeased with the notion of a relevant novice facing the self-proclaimed ‘TBE (The Best Ever)’ Floyd Mayweather. Many retired professional boxers and figures involved in the sport took to social media to air their grievances, including the likes Conor McGregor’s coach John Kavanaugh who was angered with the prospect of Logan Paul being granted a professional boxing license (although this would not be needed for an exhibition fight against Mayweather).
Not everyone in the world of boxing seems to be averse to Youtubers stepping up to face professional boxers, with some seeing the opportunity for enormous paydays from such contests. This included one of boxing’s hottest prospects Ryan Garcia who called out Logan Paul’s younger brother Jake by tweeting “If Mayweather can fight Logan Paul then I’m fighting Jake Paul.”
Mayweather and Paul’s Boxing Careers
It is fairly obvious that Mayweather and Paul have drastically different levels of experience in the sport. Floyd, one of the pound-for-pound greats of the sport, won a silver medal at the 1996 Olympics before going on to amass a record of 50 wins with zero losses in the professional ranks.
During Floyd’s professional career he won 15 world titles across five weight classes and defeated countless high-quality opponents including Oscar de La Hoya, Ricky Hatton, Shane Mosely, Canelo Alverez and Manny Pacquiao. His last bout against another professional boxer was against Andre Berto in 2015, but since then he has fought Conor McGregor in 2017 and participated in an exhibition match against Japanese kickboxer Tenshin Nasukawa in Japan in 2018.
On the other hand, Logan Paul’s journey into boxing began in 2018 when he faced English YouTuber KSI in a white-collar fight billed as the “the biggest internet event in history.” The fight lasted six rounds and ended in a draw. The event took place in front a sold-out Manchester Arena and was watched by millions online.
The success of the first fight led to a rematch being held in November 2019. For this contest both KSI and Logan Paul acquired professional boxing licenses meaning they would fight without headguards and using 10oz gloves. The rematch was promoted by boxing promoter Eddie Hearn and took place at the Staples Centre in Los Angeles. The second fight between the pair once again went the full six rounds, however this time KSI was narrowly declared the victor by a split decision after Paul was deducted two-points for throwing illegal punches. Subsequently his professional record stands at zero wins and one loss.
In early 2020, there was the possibility of Paul fighting former NFL wide-receiver Antonio Brown, however this fell through due to issues in Brown’s personal life.
Will the Fight Actually Happen?
Despite all the rumours and talk online about the prospect of this fight happening and claims it is a ‘done deal’, it is unclear as to whether or not any contracts have been signed between the pair.
News outlet TMZ reported last Friday that the fight is far from being made and that as things stand Floyd is “leaning toward ‘no.’” However, reporter Mike Feinberg from boxing site The Fighting News claims he has seen a contract signed by Mayweather himself to fight Paul.
Would Logan Paul Have Any Chance?
If the fight were to happen the question on everyone’s lips would be whether Logan Paul would have any chance at defeating boxing royalty like Floyd?
While Floyd’s hand speed, movement and boxing IQ are no doubt far, far superior to that of Logan, the sheer size difference between the two does make the fight somewhat intriguing. While Floyd stands at 5’ 8’’ and mainly fought at Welterweight (147lbs) towards the end of his career, Paul stands at a soaring 6’ 2’’ and weighed in at 199lbs for his bout against KSI. Due to the disparity in size between the two, there is a possibility Floyd who is used to fighting smaller men will not be accustomed to the power behind the punches from a man of Logan’s size. Therefore, if Logan somehow manages to land a clean punch on Floyd, it could spell trouble for him.
This sentiment was echoed by British welterweight boxer Conor Benn, son of British boxing legend Nigel Benn, who said in an interview “Maybe I think Logan Paul will beat him,” and went on to elaborate that “All Logan has to do is land one on him. Just one.”
Some bookmakers have already begun to offer odds on the fight. As expected, Floyd is a huge favourite and is priced at 1/100. On the other hand, Logan is priced at 20/1, making him a big underdog. This shows that despite the major difference in size between the two and the fact that Floyd, now 43, is growing older, he is still widely expected to make light work of the 25-year-old Logan Paul.
Although the odds are stacked heavily in Floyd’s favour, if confirmed this fight will not be short of entertainment and drama during the build-up. As despite the extraordinary gap in boxing ability between the two, both men know how to capture the public’s imagination and promote an event. Therefore, while all may not agree with its premise, the fight is certain be one of the sport’s biggest events of the past few years.