Social media star Jake Paul (5-0, 4 KOs) agrees with the recent words of praise from six division world champion Oscar De La Hoya.
Paul was in action back in December, when he scored a brutal one-punch knockout in his rematch with former UFC champion Tyrone Woodley.
In a recent interview, De La Hoya expressed his belief that Paul can become a world champion if he continues his professional run.
“Let me tell you one thing about Jake Paul,” De La Hoya said to TMZ. “He’s the real deal. I’m going to tell you that. With only four or five fights, and the way he’s taking it serious, Jake Paul is the real deal.
“And I dare anyone who has boxing, who has MMA experience to call him out because I can tell you one thing this guy can beat a lot of good champions, even maybe great champions. Jake Paul’s on to something because he’s taking it serious. This is not a one-off, a two-off, a three-off, no. He wants to become a world champion and there’s no way out of becoming a world champion, you have to fight the very best and he’s doing it right. I just have to say that, that Jake Paul is doing the right thing.
“He’s on his way to becoming a contender, and he’s on his way to becoming a world contender, then a world champion. If he keeps it up, with all the social media stuff, look, everybody wants to be him. Think about it, everybody wants followers, everybody is on social media. What’s wrong with him having 19 plus million followers? It’s wonderful for the sport, enough with that BS, let him be. He’s doing the right thing and is great for boxing. I really hope he does become world champion.”
Paul believes his performances in the ring are gaining him respect within the boxing world.
He was touched by the recent statements from De La Hoya.
"To hear that from [De La Hoya] means a lot, but he's right and I've been saying it all along. I sound so cocky, 'he's right!', but it's true man. I beat world champions in the gym and sparring," Paul said to TMZ.
"Two years as a professional and I'm already doing that, it's clearly a natural talent that I have, a natural power that I have and I work my ass off. People don't really see that. They think I just go in there but I'm day in, day out twice a day, three times a day in the gym working on getting better in the sport. It is awesome to hear that and I'm gonna prove that I can beat world champions on the big stage.
"I think this last fight proved that people have to take me seriously and that everyone should be on high alert and I'm just getting started with what's to come. You see a lot more champions and a lot more fighters having my back now and it's really awesome because that respect is growing."
Paul is expected to fight again in the summer, with several names being floated around - like former WBC middleweight champion Julio Cesar Chavez Jr.
The popular Youtuber was initially scheduled to face light heavyweight prospect Tommy Fury last December. That bout fell out when Fury withdrew with an injury.