Jake Paul is set to return to the ring in March, with his opponent rumoured to be Ryan Bourland, a seasoned professional boxer with an impressive record on paper.
After suffering a first career defeat to Tommy Fury in February 2023, Paul has bounced back with two consecutive wins, first over former UFC superstar Nate Diaz before a first-round stoppage win over 10-1-1 professional boxer Andre August in December.
Paul announced that he would be fighting on the undercard of Amanda Serrano’s (46-2-1) unified featherweight title defence against Nina Meinke (18-3) on March 2 in Puerto Rico, with WBO light-flyweight champion Jonathan Gonzalez (27-3-1) also on the card.
Due to the fact that ‘The Problem Child’ would not headline, fans were not expecting a major draw in the other corner, ruling out high-profile opponents such as KSI or a rematch with Tommy Fury.
Instead, Paul has decided to continue to build of a résumé consisting of professional boxers, fresh from his devastating win over August, in the face of criticism that he was only defeating MMA stars in the boxing ring.
‘The Problem Child’ is expected to face California’s Ryan Bourland (17-2) – first reported by US media and IFL TV’s Colm McGuigan – who has spent the majority of his career at light-heavyweight, but stepped up to cruiserweight in 2022, to end a four-year spell of inactivity.
Jake Paul is in ADVANCED talks with Ryan Bourland (17-2) as his next opponent.
With the fight likely to take place in MARCHhttps://t.co/BeLvGSB3Qn
— Colm McGuigan (@ColmMcGuigan) January 4, 2024
That remains as Bourland’s lone bout since 2018, although the fight bares some significance, as he stopped Santario Martin (4-6) in the fifth-round, while AndreAugust went the full distance with Martin in 2019.
That was the sixth knockout of Bourland’s career, although he’s been on the other side of a stoppage loss, being knocked out in round one by Israel Duffus in 2015, with Duffus since going the distance with 2020 Olympian and hot prospect Cheavon Clarke last year.
Bourland’s only other defeat came in a majority decision loss to Jose Hernandez (18-3-1) in February 2018, although the ‘Rhino’ avenged the loss just eight months later.