Jake Paul has admitted that fears over Anderson Silva being knocked out in sparring caused pay-per-view sales for their fight to "tank".
YouTuber-turned-boxer Paul, 25, picked up his sixth professional win this past weekend by dropping Silva on the way to a points victory over the UFC legend. 'The Problem Child' had arguably his best outing yet against his toughest opponent, outboxing Silva over eight rounds with the judges scoring it 77-74, 78-73 and 78-73 in his favour.
The fight was in jeopardy just days before the event as Silva revealed he was "knocked out" twice in sparring during the lead-up, only for the Brazilian to state he misspoke and he was instead "knocked down". Paul said this halted all pre-buys for the event as the public thought the fight would be cancelled.
"The pre-buys were going crazy," he said on the Impaulsive podcast. "On Wednesday, when the news came out about Anderson saying he got knocked out [in sparring] or whatever, the fight was in jeopardy and all this press came out, the pre-buys tanked.
"The general public sees that and thinks it's not happening. Tommy pulled out, Hasim pulled out. ' Jake Paul can't get an event together, this is done'. It killed ticket sales, we were still selling tickets but that day everything went to zero. It was so annoying."
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Paul predicted that pay-per-view buys for his win over Silva will likely not tip over the 300,000 mark, which he described as "upsetting". With all of his previous fights, bar his pro debut, taking place during the Covid-19 outbreak, Paul thinks the timing of his fight with Silva wasn't ideal and he plans for all his future contests to take place in the summer when no other sports are on. "I think it will probably go around 200,000 - 300,000 which is kind of upsetting," Paul added.
"Halloween, World Series and Sunday football. This is the worst time of the year to fight but guess what, I had to fight. All of my fights from now on will be in the summer, there's no sports. There's like this perfect gap in July and early August when there is no sports. All my other fights were during Covid when no one had anything to do and anything to watch. NBA, NFL, nothing was on. I had to fight this year, I just had to get it f****ng done. I was tired of waiting around."