Jake Paul did what was expected on Saturday night.
He scored a unanimous-decision victory (97-92, 98-91, 98-91) over Nate Diaz in an entertaining scrap that main-evented a DAZN boxing card at the American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas.
Paul dropped Diaz in the fifth round with a short left hook on the temple that sent the MMA cult hero careening into the ropes.
Diaz got to his feet, regained his wherewithal and while he was mostly outfought over the course of the 10-round bout, he never looked to be in serious trouble for the rest of the fight.
In fact, Diaz made a good account of himself, considering this was his first professional boxing match. For most of the last four rounds, Diaz was the aggressor, walking a seemingly winded Paul down. Diaz walked through some serious shots from Paul to land several combinations of his own, but he was unable to put the YouTube sensation-turned-boxer in any peril.
Unfortunately for Diaz, he lacked the technique and power to capitalize on the ring real estate his toughness and seemingly bottomless gas tank provided.
After the fight, the two men agreed to a rematch under mixed martial arts rules, which will probably be held on an upcoming Professional Fighters League card, the promotion with whom Paul has an MMA deal. According to Diaz and Paul, the MMA bout will pay the men $10 million.
Diaz gave us all a preview of how that bout might go when he teased a guillotine to Paul in the final round.
Here are the three major takeaways from Paul’s unanimous-decision win over Diaz.
- The Pauls’ popularity is showing no sign of slowing down. After Logan Paul continued his WWE journey (he scored a victory over Ricochet at SummerSlam earlier on Saturday) he took a private jet from Detroit to Dallas to see his brother defeat Diaz. Paul was still wearing the yellow and black ring gear he did this in as he sat ringside. Love or hate them, the Pauls are ultimate needle movers.
- Diaz is as tough as they come. Despite his awkwardness and weird balance, he can take a shot with the best of them. Even with rudimentary boxing skills, his stamina and endurance were otherworldly on Saturday night.
- The MMA bout is probably going to be even more one-sided than this boxing match. Diaz is a better mixed martial artist than Paul is a boxer, and it is very likely the former could end their matchup within the first two minutes–if he wants to send fans home early.
Be on the lookout for an announcement from PFL and/or Paul regarding the MMA-rules rematch. PFL is in the midst of their Playoff season as the featherweight and light heavy heavyweights punched their tickets to championship bouts on Friday night in San Antonio.
An announcement concerning Paul-Diaz II could come during the PFL Championships in November.