‘He Froze Up’- Tyron Woodley Details Backstage Confrontation with Jake Paul

Published 04/22/2021, 1:55 AM EDT
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – MAY 30: Tyron Woodley battles Gilbert Burns in a welterweight bout during the UFC Fight Night event at UFC APEX on May 30, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC)


Former UFC welterweight champion Tyron Woodley spoke to ESPN’s Ariel Helwani following Triller’s boxing event at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. ‘The Chosen One’ was in the corner of Ben Askren, who took on Jake Paul in the main event. Woodley and ‘Funky’ have been teammates and supporters of each other right from their college wrestling days at Missouri.

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Unfortunately, things didn’t exactly go as planned as Jake Paul knocked Ben Askren out in the first round. What’s more, there were plenty of warring words exchanged in the lead-up to the fight, including in the locker room. The UFC fighter spilled the beans on the same.

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Tyron Woodley: No messing around

The former champion shared an interesting story that involved Jake Paul not long before the YouTube boxer stepped out to fight. A verbal sparring match between Woodley and Paul’s teammate, J’Leon Love, went viral on the night of the fight. However, Woodley shed light on a tense moment he shared with ‘The Problem Child’ that wasn’t picked up by the cameras.

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – SEPTEMBER 18: Tyron Woodley poses on the scale during the UFC Fight Night weigh-in at UFC APEX on September 18, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)

He said, “Then I get to the locker room to check Jake’s gloves and the person that’s never spoke, ever, that was so quiet, walks around like ‘you know nothing about these gloves’. First thing Jake said was ‘You here for clout’. I said, ‘Don’t play with me, you know I don’t play those games’.”

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“At that point, he froze up. His act and his little character was stifled cause those guys are fans of mine. He really don’t want to play those games cause he know what I can do. Whether I’ve done it in my last fights or not, you know what I can fu**ing do right.”

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – MAY 30: Tyron Woodley battles Gilbert Burns in a welterweight bout during the UFC Fight Night event at UFC APEX on May 30, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC)

Despite Woodley’s skid in the UFC as of late, he’s more than capable of holding his own against anyone. It’s very possible that a boxing match could be set up between Woodley and either Paul or Love based on the aforementioned tense run-ins. What’s more, there would be a compelling in-built storyline of ‘The Chosen One’ looking to avenge Askren’s loss against Jake Paul.

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Darryl Pinto

1452 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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