UFC legend Anderson Silva will face Jake Paul in a boxing match on October 29 in Arizona

Jake-PaulCritics will groan noting that the YouTube sensation has spun Boxing prodigy Professional boxer goes the easy way again. He is in front Anderson Silva – 47-year-old male – at the Gila River Arena in Phoenix, Arizona on October 29 at the main event of a Showtime pay-per-view card. The 47-year-old has only four boxing matches, will they whine.

His supporters will point out that the 47-year-old is arguably the greatest fighter in UFC history and is by far the toughest test of Paul’s fledgling boxing career.

Showtime made the Silva Paul fight official on Tuesday.

It should be noted that both points of view are correct. Since turning pro on January 30, 2020, Paul has struggled: AnEsonGib, a social media influencer; Nate Robinson, a former NBA player; Ben Askren and Tyron Woodley (twice with Woodley), ex-MMA fighters; and now Silva. MMA and boxing are similar sports but not the same, and both Askren and Woodley had wrestling as their base in MMA.

Yes, Silva is 47 and yes, his win over former middleweight champion Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. is hardly something to brag about. Chavez struggled with drug and alcohol issues throughout his career, and by the time he fought Silva, he lost interest in fighting, barely trained, and was seen partying throughout his camp.

Silva’s boxing debut took place on May 22, 1998 when Paul was 16 months old. He didn’t box again until 2005 and then again in 2021 after retiring from MMA.

But even at 47, Silva is a far superior forward to both Askren and Woodley (and of course Robinson and AnEsonGib). He will be by orders of magnitude the best fighter Paul has ever faced.

Paul is still a developing boxer and if he didn’t have a widely recognizable name he would either not box at all or meet boxers the world has and will never have heard of.

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However, his name is big enough to sell tickets and pay-per-views, although he seems to be much more popular in the MMA arena than in the boxing community.

A fight with a 47 year old Silva is a pretty even match, although a fight with a 37 year old Silva would have been a gross mismatch.

Anderson Silva meets Jake Paul at Gila River Arena in Phoenix, Arizona on October 29 (Getty Images)

Anderson Silva meets Jake Paul at Gila River Arena in Phoenix, Arizona on October 29 (Getty Images)

The only bad thing here is that Paul is stepping on Silva’s name and reputation to bolster his own reputation, and Silva may be at a point in his career where he can’t do anything about it.

What proves the success of these boxer vs. mma fighter shows – and they range from amazingly good to very bad – is the gullibility of the public. I’m still amazed five years later that there were more than a handful of people who thought Conor McGregor had a shot at beating Floyd Mayweather. He didn’t, and the fact that McGregor won a few rounds was simply because Mayweather played and carried McGregor to build drama before he got to work.

However, despite this result, there are still many who believe that an MMA fighter has a chance in a boxing match against a boxer of similar skill. An MMA fighter would easily punch a boxer – and every time – when fighting MMA instead of boxing. But if they box, if the boxer walks away, he will win.

The only difference is in a case like this where Silva is 22 years older than Paul, clearly years past his prime and not really a boxer.

If Silva wins, that says a lot more about Paul than about Silva. And if Paul wins, well, given Silva’s age and new track record, that proves nothing other than that Silva was well past his sell-by date. Keep in mind that Silva has gone 1-7 without a contest for the last seven years of his UFC career. He was hardly the type to dominate the sport for nearly 2,500 days.

However, Paul is a master salesman and none of that matters to him.

“Anderson ‘The Spider’ Silva is the most versatile fighter the world has ever seen,” Paul said in a statement. “Just a year ago he outclassed boxing champion Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. and showed the world why he is often called the greatest fighter of all time. Every expert from MMA to boxing has said Jake Paul will not fight Anderson Silva. They said Jake Paul was afraid of Anderson Silva and Jake Paul would lose to Anderson Silva.

“Well, to all the non-believers – Jake Paul is fighting Anderson Silva. It’s an honor to have the opportunity to share the ring with the greatest UFC forward of all time. On Saturday October 29th I will humbly step into the ring, put on gloves with a living legend and do my best to root out ‘The Spider’.”

Of course, Chavez was hardly a “boxing champion” when Silva defeated him. It’s been over nine years since he was a champion the night he fought Silva, but hey, Paul is a vendor and he has PPVs to sell.

The result will depend on Silva’s legs. If he has his legs under him, he will win the fight. If he doesn’t, Paul will likely take him by decision.

However, the result will prove very little. But it will do business, and those who criticize it should remember that. Fighting is a business, and at the end of the day, that’s really all that matters.

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