Jake Paul passed the toughest test of his boxing career on August 29 in front of a crowd from his hometown.
The YouTube star-turned-boxer won an eight-round split decision against former UFC welterweight champion Tyrone Woodley at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse and improved his score to 4-0.
“I don’t know what to say. He was a strong opponent, fought for many years and I’m still new to this,” Paul said. “My legs were weird, I didn’t know what was wrong with me. With all due respect to Tyrone. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame and had a good fight. I have nothing but respect for him. No hard feelings. It’s amazing to do this for my city and it’s a dream. “
Two out of three judges rated the bout 77-75 and 78-74 in favor of Paul, who was born and raised in Westlake. The third referee gave the fight to Woodley, 77-75.
Many doubted Paul’s chances against Woodley, but he outplayed his opponent to earn a decision.
In the fourth round, Woodley unloaded with a large right that knocked Paul off the ropes, but Paul survived as the ropes could help him stay upright.
“He hit me with one shot for the whole fight, and it was a good hit,” Paul said. “It was a really good shot. I don’t know what this judge saw. But I still won the victory. For me to come here and go through eight rounds in my fourth fight, who will? I am doing what I have never done. “
This important moment in the fourth round of Woodley was not enough to influence the judges. In the final statistics of the fight, Paul has an advantage in all categories. He struck 71 out of 207 hits (34 percent), 35 out of 85 power punches and 36 out of 122 punches. Woodley got 52 hits out of 163 (32 percent).
The Paul-Woodley fight was the highlight of the evening during a one-off Showtime event. It was Paul’s fourth professional boxing match and Woodley’s first in the ring. Woodley has fought 27 times in the UFC.
After this decision, Woodley was already in revenge mode.
“… Jake and I need to get it back,” Woodley said.
Paul wasn’t so sure about the rematch.
“Let’s see who’s next,” he said. “I have been fighting for 18 months. I haven’t cut my hair in two years. I didn’t stop for a second. I’m just going to find out what’s next. “