Jake Paul vs Nate Diaz: A Clash of Titans in the Boxing Ring
Nate Diaz believed that, in his professional boxing debut, if he could force Jake Paul to go 10 rounds instead of eight, it would be to his advantage. But instead, Paul (7-1, 4 KO) showed once again why MMA fighters have struggled to find their footing in the boxing ring by dominating nearly every round of the fight to score a clear unanimous decision victory on Saturday night in Dallas.
Paul’s boxing was too technical for Diaz, who tried to ugly things up with a face-first style and slapping combinations. Paul had the power to counter Diaz’s awkwardness, rattling him in the first round and scoring a fifth-round knockdown off a step-back left hook that sent Diaz nearly spilling through the ropes.
Diaz had moments, but Paul’s power was the deciding factor and his cardio never faltered, even fighting 10 rounds for the first time in his career.
“He’s tough,” Paul said after the fight. “He’s real tough, that’s what he’s known for. But tough in this sport doesn’t work. … I knocked him down, won basically every round. He’s a warrior, you know. I hurt him in the first round but he kept on coming.”
Diaz pulled out many of the same tricks that made him a fan favorite in his lengthy mixed martial arts career as he taunted, feigned being hurt and made the fight awkward in various ways. While those unusual tactics seemed to throw Paul off his game in the early rounds, by the 10th, Paul was ignoring them and using Diaz’s behavior as an opportunity to land clean punches on an opponent who was willingly putting himself out of position.
In the end, Paul won the fight on the scorecards, with the judges turning in scores of 97-92, 98-91 and 98-91.
After the win, Paul reiterated his desire to fight Diaz in mixed martial arts, the MMA promotion Paul signed with and has equity in.
Diaz was quick to accept the proposed rematch, saying his Real Fight Inc. promotion would need to be involved.
“I had the single leg in the first and the guillotine in the 10th,” Diaz said of some moments during the fight. “I already won that battle. … MMA sounds good.”
Diaz has also expressed a desire to return to the UFC, the promotion in which he fought for from 2007 to 2022. Should Diaz pursue that route rather than taking Paul’s deal to fight in PFL, it leaves Paul with an obvious potential opponent.