Jake Paul has been offered a home at Bellatore – but only if he is serious about competing in mixed martial arts.
The YouTuber recently claimed that he would retire from boxing and sign a one-fight deal to face Jorge Masvidal in the UFC if President Dana White met his demands.
It came after the 24-year-old star – who viciously KO’d former UFC welterweight champion Tyron Woodley in his last outing – said he would begin training at the renowned MMA gym American Kickboxing Academy.
And Bellator president Scott Coker is ready to give The Problem Child a chance to try his hand at MMA.
He told MMA Junkie: “If you want to get into MMA, we’ll gladly do that.
“Think about it: He’s not saying, ‘I’m going to train here. I’m going to train there.’
“He’s going to come to one of the best gyms on the planet, where Khabib is, where Daniel Cormier is still training, where Cain Velasquez is teaching there right now, and he’s going to move into an environment in which he is thriving, and he already has a wrestling background.
“He has great striking, obviously. You’ve seen it, and so this guy just keeps getting better and better and better.”
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Paul has yet to match a full-fledged boxer in his brief stint in the sport and Koker believes the cause is a step ahead in the competition, a social media sensation.
He continued: “The days of him fighting basketball players or whatever, those days are over.
“He wants to do it. All I can say is that my understanding is that he wants to get into boxing 10 fights and then get into mixed martial arts.
“I know some people feel a certain way, but let me tell you, don’t underestimate these people because when they make up their mind, it seems they are capable of fulfilling their destiny.” , and so to me, it’s something that if they want to do that, we’d love to do something with them and put them in some big fights and really test them.”
Paul – along with older brother Logan – has made waves in the boxing world in his five professional appearances.
And although the brothers got into the martial arts too late, Koker refuses to put any limits on how far they can go.
The veteran promoter said: “I always said, ‘Look, these guys are real athletes, and they’re young, they work hard, they’re grinding it out.
“They’re putting in the work. You can’t take it away from them, and they keep getting better and better and better.
“It took a lot of hard work to get to the point of what you saw with Woodley. I’ve never seen Woodley getting knocked out like this, right? And so, is it just boxing?
“Yeah. So, I always said, ‘Look, man, don’t underestimate these guys,’ and it was like a year and a half ago.”
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