By: Sean Crose
“The rumored grudge match between YouTube stars Jake ‘The Problem Child’ Paul andAnEsonGib is finally official,” Matchroom Boxing announced this week via press release, “and will take center stage as the co-main event of a huge night of boxing on Thursday January 30at the Meridian at Island Gardens in Miami, and streamed live exclusively on DAZN in the United States and on Sky Sports in the UK.” And so it is that another high profile, YouTube centric event is making its way to the boxing ring.
Although many purists were upset by the kind of publicity this year’s second Logan Paul-KSI rematch brought to the sport, that bout was clearly successful enough for people like promoter Eddie Hearn to feel more matches of its ilk are warranted.
Matchroom reports that Paul, brother of Logan Paul, “is passionate about conquering professional boxing and has his sights set on avenging his brother’s loss against KSI in 2020.” The 22 year old is also reportedly “the most viewed internet star in the United States with more than 36 million followers across YouTube, Instagram, TikTok and Twitter.” Matchroom adds that “in addition to his (Paul’s) huge success as a content creator on social media, the Ohio native, who now calls California home, has flourished as a musician and actor in recent years.”
As for Gib, as AnEsonGib is reportedly called, Matchroom claims the 23 year old “rose to popularity through video gaming, most particularly as a standout FIFA player.” The promotional company adds Gib “is a member of the famous gaming crew The Sidemen in the U.K., his home country, which also features KSI.” Apparently those who are “in the know” won’t be surprised by a Paul-Gib fight. Matchroom states that “Gib…has been linked to a fight with Jake Paul for many months as the two men exchanged words often throughout the KSI vs. Logan Paul 2 promotion. Gib has fought two amateur bouts in the U.K. and will also make his professional debut.”
Both men clearly seem eager for the upcoming fight. “Coming into the sport of boxing as an undefeated champion amongst my peers, it’s my duty to set the bar as high as possible for others looking to cross over into the sport,” Paul is quotes as saying. “This is more than a fight to me, it’s a chance to show the world that anyone with a dream, vision, and the right work ethic, can overcome adversity and shine on the brightest stage. This bout has deep roots; it’s a fight for my brother’s honor, my pride and most importantly my loyal fans who are among the best in the world. This is the American dream. Thursday, January 30, on DAZN, my opponent’s 15 minutes of fame turn into 10 seconds of counting stars as he lays unconscious on the canvas. And then, I’m coming for that wanker KSI.”
In the press release, Gib accuses his opponent of having been unwilling to meet him in the ring until now. “After six months of Jakey ducking, the fight is finally going down,” Gib claims. “He had no choice of his opponent, I chose him. Since my last fight I have been training nonstop and January 30 in Miami, I will end the fight in devastating fashion and will have my hand raised in front of his country, family and friends. Jake Paul is going to be my walking, talking ad for the rest of his days.”
The Jake Paul – AnEsonGib bout will be the com-main event of the Demetrius Andrade – Luke Keeler WBO middleweight title card. If both men show the dedication Logan Paul and KSI did in the ring this year, the fight might at the very least be entertaining.