Jake Paul (-180) vs Ben Askren (+150) Analysis
January 26th, 2021
Editing as of 01/26/2021
Preface: I’m not a fan of Jake Paul as an individual but I am a fan of making money. In the previous fight against Nate Robinson, a lot of bettors for NR kept on saying that he was a freakish athlete which would translate to boxing perfectly which severely favored the betting odds for Jake Paul even as a favorite. These value bets present a nice return on investment with little risk based on my personal research.
Well it took a few months but Jake Paul has announced a new fight against none other than Ben Askren. Now don’t get me wrong, Ben Askren is no joke of a fighter. He was probably one of the best wrestlers in the UFC and carries multiple achievements as a four-time All-American and three-time Big XII champion where in his final two seasons he went undefeated and won 87 matches in a row, which ranks among the Top 10 all-time in NCAA history. He’s also a 2008 Olympic wrestler and went on to complete his collegiate wrestling career with a record of 153-7 and added four Academic All-Big XII honors to his mantle. As he transitioned to Bellator going undefeated, One Championships, and then ultimately to the UFC where he made a name for himself beating opponents, most notably Robbie Lawler, Ben Askren is an extremely talented and experienced fighter.
Despite this, the matchup between Jake Paul and Ben Askren presents a very interesting situation. Ben Askren’s striking game is considered to be his achilles heel, as seen in various fights throughout his career but can be highlighted in videos such as: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HwljvZ-KKAQ&ab_channel=ColbyHale. Askren is probably the worst fighter with the worst boxing skills that could’ve been selected out of all the UFC fighters to go against Paul. His fighting profile is extremely one dimensional as a world class wrestler which has been able to grant him various wins throughout his career, but a boxing match would severely limit this. He’s also coming off a hip injury and is already 36 years old which are all factors that hurt him. I’ll come back to update this as more videos of sparring comes out from Askren, but so far this is looking like a great matchup for Jake Paul.
What Askren does has on his side though are these factors:
Experience - He’s gone against the best in the cage and has come out on top. He has tons of professional fighting experience, albeit boxing, which he can use to his advantage against a relatively less experienced fighter such as Paul.
Endurance - This man can take a beating as seen during his Lawler fight and has basically an iron chin. There’s a possibility of him wearing out Jake Paul who we haven’t seen go the distance yet or brute forcing his way to beating Paul just by being able to eat so many punches and dish out damage in return.
Clout - Askren being a world renowned fighter has to grant him the ability to get any corner that he could want. Unlike Nate Robinson’s relatively unknown corner and fighting coaches, Askren has both the money and name recognition to get some talent in his corner and hopefully get his boxing skills up to speed. I would love to see him get some boxing hall of farmers or household name coaches on his side.
Disclaimer: I've been a fan of Askren during his short UFC run and am highly surprised at all the disrespect that he gets based on his one performance against Jorge Masvidal which clouds the public opinion, as seen with the memes and disrespect that are dished out to him on Twitter. Aside from this, I was also a huge fan of Nate Robinson as well going into the last fight as an avid NBA watcher but also predicted Jake Paul knocking him out in the early rounds. Askren is an extremely likeable and funny guy, but this does not change the fact that I would place my money on Paul sadly. I’m waiting to get into my position for JP if the odds dip to around -150 to -180.