Just three fights into his career, Jake Paul is already one of the most coveted assets in combat sports, and he now has a new fighting home.
Paul has inked a deal for Showtime Sports to serve as the promoter for his next fight after he previously competed under the Triller Fight Club banner. Showtime officials confirmed the news to MMA Fighting on Wednesday following an initial report from ESPN.
While no further details are available at this time, Paul and Showtime are expected to sign a deal for multiple fights with talks ongoing for an opponent, date and location for his return to action. Paul previously represented himself as a free agent, saying he preferred one-fight deals, after working with Triller on two events.
“We love Jake,” Triller boss Ryan Kavanaugh told ESPN on Paul’s move. “I wish Jake the absolute best. We had our two fights with him. I think for us, we’ve gone the distance with him that we can go. We won’t be doing any more Jake fights.”
This past September, Showtime Sports president Stephen Espinoza talked to MMA Fighting about the attention the Paul brothers were getting after both got involved with boxing.
“The Paul’s certainly have a huge fan base,” Espinoza said. “To be honest, the first [Logan] Paul-KSI fight, I was actually impressed by the level of boxing. This was not a celebrity boxing match. These were guys who had clearly spent time in the gym and had some skills.
“It’s not at the level of a Showtime Championship Boxing, but they were not bad. They had basic skills. They definitely worked hard and it was entertaining. Again, one is apples, one is oranges.”
Funny enough, Showtime is now working with both Paul brothers after signing Jake to this deal and promoting Logan’s upcoming exhibition bout against Floyd Mayweather in June.
Considering how the 24-year-old Ohio native has become one of the most polarizing figures across boxing after he decided to turn pro back in 2020, Showtime’s interest in him is understandable. At the time he took his first fight, Paul was best known as a social influencer and YouTube celebrity after starring in viral videos alongside his brother, Logan Paul.
Paul made quick work of his debut opponent named AnEsonGib, a fellow YouTube star, who barely made it past the two-minute mark in the fight.
For his next fight, Paul dispatched ex-NBA player Nate Robinson with a vicious second-round knockout as part of the card featuring Mike Tyson’s return to action for an exhibition against Roy Jones Jr.
Paul then headlined his own card for a fight against retired UFC contender Ben Askren back in April. On that night, Paul demolished Askren with a devastating punch that sent the Olympic wrestler down to the mat in a heap, with the referee waiving off the fight after a 10-count.
The card headlined by Paul vs. Askren was said to have sold over 1 million pay-per-views through traditional cable and satellite outlets as well as online through FITE TV.
Since that time, Paul has engaged in a war of words with numerous possible opponents — many of them from the world of MMA including former UFC welterweight champion Tyron Woodley, who is currently a free agent, and former UFC heavyweight Daniel Cormier, who then confronted him at UFC 261.
There’s no word yet on a list of possible names for Paul’s next opponent, but talks are currently underway to search for a worthy foe to promote as part of his new deal with Showtime.