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Teddy Atlas has no issue with matchup


A lot has been said about Jake Paul’s upcoming bout against 57-year-old Mike Tyson.

While some have criticized the matchup due to the 30-year age gap, others have grown intrigued by two combat sports stars colliding. Teddy Atlas, legendary boxing trainer, is on board with the fight and has no issue with Paul fighting Tyson.

Atlas likes that Paul is fighting someone heavier than him, as it’s usually the opposite case. He also thinks that Tyson, even at 57, still has power behind his punches, which makes him a threat to Paul.

“First of all, he’s actually fighting a guy who finally – I know he’s much older than him – but he’s actually the bigger guy because Paul fights about cruiserweight,” Atlas said on his YouTube channel. “(Tyson) is naturally the bigger guy. He’s fighting a legendary iconic fighter, a guy who’s one of the greatest punchers in heavyweight history, one of the greatest punchers ever – with either hand, and he’s got combinations with speed and power.

“Yeah, he’s 58 years old. Yeah, the end of his career wasn’t too good before he got out. But one of the last things that go with a fighter, it’s his power.”

Given the threat that Atlas thinks Tyson still poses, plus his age, Atlas thinks Paul is in a lose-lose situation, and that’s why he credits him for taking the fight.

“I think this is a very dangerous fight for Paul,” Atlas said. “I think early on, I think he might be making a mistake. First of all, for me, he don’t have a lot (to win) other than money, and he’s made plenty of money. There’s not a lot of winning on his side because if he wins, they say he’s 58 years old and if he loses they say he’s 58 years old, and he lost to a 58-year-old guy. For me, he’s got a lot more to lose than Tyson – a lot more.

“… There’s nothing to lose for Tyson. If he wins, he’s even bigger. People are going to thank him. ‘Thank you for ending this charade’ – that’s what they’re going to say. ‘Thank you for teaching this guy that you’re either a fighter or you’re not a fighter. You can’t go from being a YouTuber to being a fighter.’ For the people that believe that, that feel that way, that don’t like Paul, they’re going to prop Tyson even higher.”

Paul vs. Tyson is scheduled for July 20 at the Dallas Cowboys’ AT&T Stadium and will live stream on Netflix. The exact ruleset and details on whether this will be a fully professional bout are unclear at the moment and have yet to be released by the promoters.

Atlas questioned whether it will be a fully sanctioned professional fight, and not because of the reasons many may think.

“Unless this is a WWE agreement, which I don’t know that it is – I never said this before because I think all these fights are legitamate, and they are and have been – but this one makes me wonder,” Atlas said. “I’m not questioning the integrity of Paul. In fact, I like his integrity. I like what I’ve seen in the guy. … I’m just saying, if there was a time I would question it, this would be the time because I can’t see, unless Paul is that confident, that Tyson is too old now, and he’s that good, because Paul has been getting more confident, and he does have a good right hand and does punch well with it and Tyson leads with left hooks. Maybe Paul thinks he can hit him with a right hand, I don’t know. All I know is that this is the first time I’ve said, ‘I wonder if there’s an agreement, because if there’s no agreement, Paul might be making a mistake. … I’m surprised Paul is taking this risk. … Power doesn’t disappear even when you’re old. He’s still got speed in the combinations. He’s still got that style.”

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