Former two-division UFC champion Georges St-Pierre recently weighed in on YouTube personalities Jake and Logan Paul’s combat sport careers.
The Paul brothers are polarizing figures in combat sports. Their substantial social media following has provided them opportunities and earned them a lot of money. Logan is scheduled to box Floyd Mayweather in an exhibition bout on June 6 while Jake is coming off a high-profile knockout win over former UFC fighter Ben Askren.
St-Pierre believes the Paul brothers are great athletes and are ushering in a new era in combat sports, but doesn’t think they can compete with elite level boxers or mixed martial artists.
“I’m not one of the haters,” St-Pierre told JOE.co.uk in a recent interview. “I think they’re doing well. They’re great athletes and they ride the wave, they make a lot of money with it, and I’m glad for him. My friend Jean Pascal trained with one of them in Puerto Rico, I think they’re both there actually. He said they work very hard, they’re hard workers, they ride the wave, you know. It’s a new era with social media and all that, so why not, you know? Who would not have done it? Who would not take advantage of it? And they do it.
“I believe it’s a mistake to think that they could compete amongst the elite of boxing or mixed martial arts because it’s not true, but they are great athletes. Maybe as time goes by they will improve and improve and one day if they want to give it a real shot, let’s go. I think one of them is fighting Floyd Mayweather, but of course, Floyd Mayweather is much smaller and he’s retired, so it’s not the same. It’s not a real championship bout like it would be.”
Triller Fight Club promoted the Mike Tyson vs. Roy Jones Jr. exhibition bout in November. Jake Paul was featured on the undercard. Triller also promoted Paul vs. Askren in April. The fight promotion has been criticized by UFC president Dana White, among others. St-Pierre believes Triller offers something different than professional boxing or mixed martial arts and thinks there is room for it in combat sports.
“Triller, what they do, they make like a freak show, so to speak,” St-Pierre said. “They want to give people what they want to see, so now it’s a new era. People want to see who is the best fighter in the world, yes, that’s what real boxing fight, Anthony Joshua, Tyson Fury, will give them. UFC, that’s what it will give them.
“But they want to see also, because they’re curious by nature I guess, they want to see that guy versus that guy because he trash talk him and he did that to him and he grabbed his hat or whatever the hell, so people are curious and that’s what Triller gives them. They give that sort of entertainment. It’s all good. I’m not one of the haters. I think there is room for everything.”
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