Jake Paul beats Ben Askren with emphatic first-round knockout to stay undefeated

George Flood
·2 min read
<p>Jake Paul celebrates his emphatic win over Ben Askren</p> (Getty Images for Triller)

Jake Paul celebrates his emphatic win over Ben Askren

(Getty Images for Triller)

Jake Paul delivered an emphatic statement as he stopped Ben Askren inside two minutes of the first round of Saturday’s much-hyped boxing match in Atlanta.

The YouTube sensation preserved his undefeated record as a professional boxer and improved to 3-0 after acing what was generally considered to be his first real test against a seasoned former MMA star.

Paul opened up Askren’s defences with a simple left jab before delivering a crunching right hand over the top that landed flush and forced the ex-Bellator, ONE and UFC fighter onto the canvas.

Askren - an elite grappler and wrestler but suspect striker who retired from the world of MMA in 2019 - took the subsequent eight count and wanted to continue, but it was quickly decided by the referee that he was in no fit state as he stumbled around uncertainly.

The victory is by far the most impressive of Paul’s short boxing career to date, with his previous triumphs coming against fellow YouTuber AnEsonGib and ex-NBA player Nate Robinson.

On Saturday’s Triller Fight Club undercard, there was a bizarre ending to the co-main event between Regis Prograis and Ivan Redkach, with the latter dominated before being stretchered out of the ring after what looked like a rather innocuous body shot in round six.

Replays showed there was clearly no low blow as originally suspected and former WBA super-lightweight champion Prograis won the contest via technical decision, having been comfortably ahead on all three judges scorecards.

Earlier on at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, former UFC heavyweight champion Frank Mir went the full six rounds on his boxing debut, but could not deny former IBF cruiserweight title-holder Steve Cunningham a unanimous decision win in the latter’s first ring appearance for four years.

British billionaire entrepreneur and pro fighter Joe Fournier also improved his professional record to 9-0 in his first bout since 2016 with an utterly one-sided victory over Colombian reggaeton musician Reykon, who was brushed aside on his own boxing debut.

Quinton Randall and Junior Younan also preserved their unbeaten records during the prelims, beating William Jackson and Jeyson Minda respectively.

Saturday night’s Triller pay-per-view event also featured a string of musical performances from the likes of Justin Bieber, The Black Keys, Diplo, Doja Cat, Saweetie and hip-hop supergroup Mount Westmore, while Snoop Dogg arguably once again stole the show with his ringside commentary, claiming to have won a $2million bet on the main event with UFC president Dana White.

A somewhat bizarre evening also involved comedian Pete Davidson and wrestling icon Ric Flair watching a slap fight and a strange commentary cameo from Oscar De La Hoya, who makes his own boxing comeback on Triller on July 3.

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