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Jake Paul is being tipped to take on a higher-profile opponent
  1. Boxing

Boxing: What next for Jake Paul?

Jake Paul remains unbeaten after six fights following his unanimous decision victory over former UFC champion Anderson Silva.

Paul came through the eight-round contest, which was watched by 14,000 fans at the Desert Diamond Arena in Phoenix, comfortably, with the judges scoring the fight - 77-74, 78-73 and 78-73 in his favour.

The 25-year-old has won all six of his professional bouts since making his debut against AnEsonGib in January 2020, having previously picked up one victory over Deji Olatunji as an amateur.

Saturday's bout was arguably Paul's toughest test, albeit against a 47-year-old, but Silva enjoyed a prosperous career in MMA and held the middleweight title from 2006 to 2013.

Paul said: "Man, it's a surreal moment but hard work pays off.

"I want to say thank you to Anderson - he inspired me to be great. Without him, we wouldn't have a fight this year.

"I have nothing but respect for him. I started boxing two and a half years ago and I've just beaten one of the best strikers ever."

Paul stepping up the competition

Silva is regarded as one of the greatest to ever step into the octagon and his record of 16 consecutive victories still stands but he's certainly not at the level he once was.

Plenty still question Paul's selection of opponents and he's yet to face a rival from a boxing background to compile a 6-0 record.

After knocking out YouTuber AnEsonGib on his professional debut, Paul earned a second-round knockout win over former NBA player Nate Robinson.

There was a step up in competition for his third bout when he climbed into the ring against someone that at least had experience in combat sports, although former Bellator and One Championship title-holder Ben Askren, who comes from a wrestling background, was stopped in the first round.

Tyron Woodley, who held the UFC welterweight title between 2016 and 2019, represented another step up and he was the first to take Paul the distance.

Paul claimed a split decision triumph and, to his credit did attempt to move on to face a boxer following some online verbal sparring with Tommy Fury.

Ultimately, that arranged bout fell through and Woodley stepped in for a rematch and this time Paul earned a more emphatic win via a sixth-round knockout.

Brazil's Silva is undoubtedly the most formidable striker to have gone up against Paul, picking up 23 knockout victories during his 46-fight MMA career, while he had four professional boxing fights under his belt.

However, at 47, it was always going to be a stretch for the Spider and he couldn't match the speed of his much younger rival.

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Diaz could be set for big payday

Paul has no shortage of people calling him out and it will be interesting to see what path he plots for his seventh bout.

Nate Diaz, who saw his contract with the UFC end after beating Tony Ferguson at UFC 279 in September, is understood to have been on Paul's radar for some time.

He was unable to step into the ring while contracted by the UFC but he is now free to negotiate and Paul was quick to call him out after beating Silva.

"Everyone wants that fight," Paul said. "Nate, stop fighting people for free, let's do it in the ring."

Diaz was in attendance at Saturday's event and appears keen on taking up the offer after complaining about underpayment of fighters during his time with the UFC.

The 37-year-old is best known for beating Conor McGregor at UFC 196 in 2016, ending the Irishman's 15-fight win streak.

Diaz hails from a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu background but showed a preference for boxing during his MMA career, although he only picked up five of his 21 victories by knockout.

Fury and Froch both want a piece of the Problem Child

Many in the boxing world have taken shots at Paul and feel that he is making a mockery of the sport by setting up one-sided contests to bolster his record.

Paul did initially look very raw when he first started out on his boxing journey but he's shown great commitment to improving and is reaping the rewards.

He has no shortage of power and speed but we will only know how far he has come once he goes toe-to-toe with an opponent who has spent their entire life training.

Attempts to set up a fight with Tyson Fury's brother, Tommy, didn't quite come through in December 2021 due to injury and illness on the part of the Englishman.

Fury has revealed a desire to get talks back underway and, should he beat Paul Bamba on 13th November, he may get Paul's team back around the table.

Retired middleweight world champion Carl Froch has also called out the American this week and revealed he would consider putting the gloves back on to "smash him to bits".

Froch, now 45, retired with a 33-2 record and claims Paul is "not a professional boxer" and insists he "can't fight".

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