Frank Warren says people are “massively buying” into the idea of influencers moving into the sport of boxing.
The veteran fight promoter has been in the game for several decades and has been through plenty.
But Warren, 70, knows that the game is moving on around him and reckons it is just a matter of time before fights involving ‘YouTubers’ are commonplace and much more accepted by the mainstream audience.
Tommy Fury, the brother of WBC heavyweight world champion Tyson Fury, has long been linked with a fight against Jake Paul, an American entertainer-turned-fighter-turned-fight-maker, but that has yet to materialise after the younger Fury brother was refused entry into the United States for their proposed clash earlier this year.
And Warren had plenty to say on the matter of supposed non-boxers entering the fray when talking to the People, Just People podcast with Dermot O’Leary.
“I went to Jake Paul’s fight in America because Tommy Fury was fighting on the undercard.
Normally, with boxing, it’s quite empty until the main event comes on. You’ve got the boxing nuts who sit there [through it all] or the fans of a particular fighter who is fighting, but it’s not until the main event or the fight before the main event that it starts filling up for it’s filled up.
The place was full as soon as the doors opened. It was a real young audience but they sat and watched everything.”
Paul and Fury had been set to meet on August 6 at Madison Square Garden in New York, but the fight fell off. Paul returns on October 29 at the Gila River Arena in Phoenix, Arizona when he takes on former MMA star Anderson Silva, while Fury has yet to confirm a return.
“I looked around at a couple of the old guys and asked where we went wrong.
Jake Paul – who is a lovely guy, by the way, a very clever man and a great promoter – is in an eight-round fight and is giving a speech after an eight-rounder.
He’s fought a guy who is 40-odd years off age or whatever he is and I’m thinking to myself…
But they’re massively buying into it.
A fight between him and Tommy is supposed to have happened and it’s been a real nightmare, but they’re really buying into it.”