‘The MMA World is Very Nervous Right Now’- TJ Dillashaw Backs Ben Askren to Beat Jake Paul in his Boxing Debut

Published 02/22/2021, 8:45 AM EST
LOS ANGELES, CA – AUGUST 04: TJ Dillashaw celebrates after his knockout victory over Cody Garbrandt in their UFC bantamweight championship fight during the UFC 227 event inside Staples Center on August 4, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)


Former champion TJ Dillashaw spoke to Mike Swick on ‘Real Quick’ and chimed in on an upcoming boxing bout. Chiefly, Dillashaw provided a comprehensive look at Ben Askren vs Jake Paul that is scheduled for April.

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The aforementioned crossover boxing match has acquired a lot of attention worldwide, and TJ Dillashaw gladly jumped on the bandwagon.

Jake Paul will face a huge step-up in competition when facing Askren, who’s got a background in combat. ‘The Problem Child’ has only faced a fellow YouTuber and NBA star thus far in his run as a professional.

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In stark contrast, Ben Askren was undefeated for the majority of his MMA career and scalped wins over former champions.

MIAMI, FLORIDA – JANUARY 30: Jake Paul looks on against AnEsonGib during their fight at Meridian at Island Gardens on January 30, 2020 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

While it would seem like Askren’s win is a foregone conclusion, there are some who believe Paul can win. ‘Funky’ Ben isn’t particularly known for his stand-up, and the majority of his success came through in his wrestling. The former Olympian’s striking has led some to believe that Paul might be able to get the job done.

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TJ Dillashaw breaks down Ben Askren vs Jake Paul

The former bantamweight champion was in the came that Ben Askren was the likely favorite to come out on top. However, he couldn’t help but express a sense of doubt as to whether Askren’s deficiency in the striking department would prove to be costly. What’s more, this seems to be a sentiment shared by a large section of the MMA community at large.

SINGAPORE, SINGAPORE – OCTOBER 26: Ben Askren reacts to his submission loss to Demian Maia of Brazil in their welterweight bout during the UFC Fight Night event at Singapore Indoor Stadium on October 26, 2019 in Singapore. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

“Askren should win right, but I’m nervous about it. You watch him strike and it’s like the MMA world is very nervous right now that he’s gonna be…

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“He should win the fight. He should be smart enough. I mean Jake Paul is gonna get tired, he should be able to wear him out and make him lose his explosiveness and dance around and get the win.

“But I wouldn’t say Askren’s the better striker I think he’s just the better competitor and that’s what’s gonna win him the fight. At least I really hope so, my fingers are crossed because man, crazy.”

Ben Askren is putting a lot on the line when he finally steps under the bright lights of the ring against ‘The Problem Child.’

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Although Jake Paul is clearly talented, he isn’t expected to steamroll over a professional MMA fighter. The fall-out of a potential loss leaves plenty of unanswered questions about Ben Askren’s combat sports legacy.

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Darryl Pinto

1653 articles

Darryl Pinto is a senior MMA writer at EssentiallySports. He is currently pursuing his graduate degree in Mass Media (with a specialization in Journalism) out of Xavier’s College and has a year's experience in his current role. Darryl specializes in predictions, reporting, and covering UFC events live.

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