UFC President Dana White has no interest in signing Jake Paul.
However, that doesn’t mean bosses of other MMA promotions aren’t. Bellator President Scott Coker shares a different view of ‘The Problem Child’ altogether. It’s a respectful one.
Paul Teases Crossover
Paul has been teasing a move into MMA for quite some time now, but would make more noise than ever earlier this week. Paul would make an offer to White, that he would easily refuse. The boxer said he would hang up the gloves in the ring and fight Jorge Masvidal inside the Octagon. This would Paul’s MMA debut, hypothetically speaking.
But, there was a big catch. White would have to pull a lot of strings to make fighter pay better in the UFC. White would refuse, going off on Paul about other things outside of fighter pay.
Scott Coker Praises Paul
It looks like we’re not gonna see Paul try MMA in the near future. However, there is another player inside the MMA business that’s not Dana White. That’s where Scott Coker comes in. Bellator’s best is definitely interested in welcoming Paul to the cage.
While Paul isn’t trained in MMA, he believes the boxer can adapt and overcome in a new sport. He has no room to underestimate the younger Paul brother.
“I always said, ‘Look, these guys are real athletes, and they’re young, they work hard, they’re grinding it out,” Coker told MMA Junkie. “They’re putting in the work. You can’t take that away from them, and they’re getting better and better and better.
“What you saw with Woodley, that’s a lot of hard work to get to that point. I’ve never seen Woodley get knocked out like that, right? And so, is it just boxing? Yes. So, I always said, ‘Look, man, don’t underestimate these guys,’ and this was like a year-and-a-half ago.”
Bellator could also be a good first home for Paul, since they work with Showtime and have a good idea of building debuting talent.
Potential Move To MMA
The influencer is putting in a lot of hard work inside the boxing gym. If he wants to dive into MMA, he has expressed interest in training at American Kickboxing Academy (AKA), the home of Khabib Nurmagomedov.
His boxing has been enough to take out Ben Askren and Tyron Woodley. Paul has a wrestling pedigree he he needs to polish up from high school, so it’s just a matter of combining those two together effectively and learning a lot more new tricks.
Coker doesn’t brush off Paul like White did, he sees real potential for him to move to MMA. Business could boom for Bellator, should it happen.
“If you want to come into MMA, we would gladly do it,” Coker said. “Think about this: He’s not saying, ‘I’m going to go train here. I’m going to go train there.’ He’s going to come to one of the best gyms in the planet, where Khabib is, where Daniel Cormier is still training, where Cain Velasquez is teaching there now, and he’s going to go into an environment that he is going to flourish, and he has a wrestling background already. He has great striking, obviously. You’ve seen it, and so this guy is just going to get better and better and better. The days of him fighting basketball players or whatever, those days are over.
“He wants to do it. The only thing I will say is, my understanding is he wants to get 10 fights into boxing, and then after that come over to mixed martial arts. I know certain people feel a certain way, but I tell you, don’t underestimate these guys because when they have their minds made up, it just seems like that they’re able to fulfill their destiny, and so to me, it’s something that if they want to make it happen, we would love to do something with them and put them in some big fights and really test them out.”