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Jake Paul’s coach Danny Smith has revealed his belief that boxing saved his fighter’s life. The YouTuber turned boxer is currently 5-0 as a professional having beaten fellow social media star AnEsonGib, NBA player Nate Robinson, and UFC star Ben Askren – plus back-to-back victories over former UFC welterweight champion Tyron Woodley.
In a recent interview with Vegas Insider, Jake’s coach told the publication that boxing stopped Paul from ‘self-destructing’ and revealed that ‘The Problem Child’s’ will to fight comes from trauma in his past. “He told me that boxing really, truly saved his life from the life that he was living prior to boxing,” said Smith.
“The entertainment lifestyle of having fun and partying, stuff like that could be self-destructive to a guy like Jake. Jake’s going to make boxing a career for himself instead because it pays very, very well. And it’s something that gives him the freedom to release whatever frustration and anger from his past that maybe he doesn’t discuss. Boxing is his outlet, and it has served him really, really well with that.
“He has a love for training, and he is a true student. He’s listening. He’s so dedicated. He’s so invested. And he’s someone that invests not just their money and their time, but their every thought and effort and desire. His mentality and his will is so frickin strong. I would say Diego Corrales is like Jake. You almost have to kill them to beat them. Jake has that will.
“I think it [the will] comes from some trauma as a kid in his past. So, there was some bullying going on somewhere, possibly. There’s a lot of rage and anger or something in his childhood. And that’s what normally elevates fighters, like the ones that come from poverty. It’s the same kind of drama and anger and abuse somewhere. And they release it into boxing.”
Speaking on his progression in the gym, Smith continued: “The media and a lot of fighters don’t know how well he’s progressing, and they really don’t know how serious he is. And they’re going to be underestimating him when they get in there until they feel his presence, his strength, his power, his speed. We’ve noticed that with a lot of sparring partners because they get in there and they’re like: ‘wow, it’s a life-or-death situation in there with him and he’s better than we thought the world is going to see that.
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“The most important thing that I’m working on is his defence, his understanding of the selection of punches that you can throw and that same selection of punches that can come back. So, defence is a huge factor in surviving in boxing.
“I know for sure that we’re not going to be at cruiserweight. We’re going to come to light heavy. 175. We’ve just been fighting at the 190-192 limit. He’s just floating around that weight. But he will be a 175-pounder and he will crack the top ten [in the world].
“He has to stay so locked into his training because he knows that he doesn’t have the amateur background. So, we’re training all year round. We’re working on things all year round. It’s not like we meet like the typical former champion or current champion and work out for eight weeks and then we disperse. We keep working all year round.”
Paul is set to return to the ring on August 6 against an undisclosed opponent. Among those in the running are Mike Tyson, Eric ‘Butterbean’ Esch, Anderson Silva, and Tommy Fury. Amanda Serrano is also scheduled to defend her WBC and WBO featherweight titles on the same card.
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