Jake Paul has an ideal opponent for his long-awaited MMA debut – and it’s not Nate Diaz

PFL head Dan Hardy pointed to a good fight for Jake Paul’s MMA debut with the company.

Paul signed with the PFL in January of last year and was initially expected to compete towards the end of 2023.

Jake Paul is a PFL fighter but has yet to make his MMA debut


Jake Paul is a PFL fighter but has yet to make his MMA debutCredit: PFL

However, it’s now June 2024 and Paul doesn’t seem any closer to stepping into the Octagon.

There were initial talks for him to face Nate Diaz in MMA after defeating the UFC icon in boxing.

But Diaz couldn’t accept “The Problem Child.”

Since then, radio has been silent on Paul’s MMA efforts, although Hardy believes a fight against former foe Tyron Woodley could inspire him to finally step into the cage.

“If we do it, the one that makes the most sense is Tyron Woodley,” Hardy told MMA Fighting.

“He commentated with the PFL, he does a great job with that. Every time I see him, we have a very frosty handshake.

“I feel like he always wants to punch me in the face. Of course he lost by knockout to Jake Paul.

“If I’m Tyron Woodley, I’m putting myself first in line to welcome Jake Paul into MMA. I think he’s the kind of opponent that could attract Jake Paul.”

Paul beat Tyron Woodley twice in boxing, including a brutal knockout


Paul beat Tyron Woodley twice in boxing, including a brutal knockoutCredit: Showtime

Paul fought Woodley twice in boxing. In their inaugural meeting, in August 2021, Paul defeated the former UFC welterweight champion by split decision before brutally eliminating him in their rematch four months later.

Last year, when it looked like Paul and Diaz were fighting again in MMA, Woodley insisted he was much more deserving of the opportunity.

“If you really, really want to prove that you can do it in my world, you fight the No. 1 in this world,” Woodley told MMA Fighting.

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“Nate never touched gold, he was never close to gold. Neither did (Derek) Brunson and I saw other people barking.

“Everyone wants to jump on the bandwagon. You guys are kind of like groupies. Everyone wants to fight Jake.

“Remember, I never asked to fight Jake. I was staying out of the mix. I was cornering Ben Askren.”

If Woodley still feels the same way, it would be an easy fight to make, but that won’t happen until at least next year, with Paul currently tied up with boxing bouts against Mike Perry on July 20 and Mike Tyson on the 15th. november.


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