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Opening Odds for Jake Paul vs Ben Askren

Dylan Bowker

by Dylan Bowker in Boxing

Dec 23, 2020 · 7:09 AM PST

Ben Askren celebrates after defeating Robbie Lawler in a welterweight mixed martial arts bout at UFC 235, Saturday, March 2, 2019, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)
  • Opening odds for Jake Paul vs Ben Askren have dropped and the internet is buzzing
  • Who wins in the boxing ring between the Youtube star and the UFC vet?
  • Check out the fight odds, analysis, and the story of how we got here, below

Opening odds have been released for Jake Paul vs Ben Askren as they set to fight on March 28th, 2021 in Los Angeles. The brash Youtuber has been calling out people for fights seemingly every day.

Now Funky Ben has obliged and will be Paul’s next dance partner. The Problem Child looks to score his third pro knockout, while Askren looks to play the role of problem-solver in his Queensberry Rules debut.

Jake Paul vs Ben Askren Odds

Fighter Odds
Jake Paul -180
Ben Askren +150

Odds as of Dec. 23

The favorite at this point is Jake Paul and through the myopic lens of boxing accomplishment, I kind of get why.

Jake Paul’s Unbeaten Boxing Run

Right after his highlight-reel knockout of former NBA star Nate Robinson, discussion abounded around who Jake Paul would box next.

Now 2-0 as a pro with back to back KOs, he readies himself for the first quarter of 2021 and the stiffest test of his fledgling fighting career so far.

Paul has so far been able to capitalize on the inexperience of his prior adversaries. Both of Jake Paul’s prior victories came against debutant boxers.

While his next opponent is debuting in the sweet science, this bellies the overall experience Askren has in the fight game.

Who is Ben Askren?

Ben Askren is an accomplished MMA fighter who is coming back from his second retirement from competition. Funky is a highly decorated wrestler that became an Olympian before crossing over to mixed martial arts.

His MMA journey saw him compile a record of 19-2 overall. Askren captured welterweight belts in ONE Championship and Bellator MMA before going on a three-fight UFC run.

Ben Askren recently took to his personal Twitter account to address this Jake Paul fight.

While Askren’s main forte is grappling, this will still be a telling fight for Paul at this stage in his boxing efforts. If Paul wants to keep campaigning for names like Conor McGregor and some of the higher-end names he’s called out, getting pieced up by Funky Ben at this juncture stymies all of that.

This will be a telling fight for what Jake Paul’s ceiling is in the combat sports world and how serious of a factor he can be. Askren is a notable name and it would vault Paul out of the celebrity boxing/sideshow tier he presently occupies.

Jake Paul vs Ben Askren betting

Ultimately, Jake Paul vs Ben Askren is a curious matchup to examine on paper. While Askren has more cumulative combat experience overall, he represents one of the more reasonable matchups for Paul. At least in terms of MMA fighters crossing over to boxing.

At the risk of sounding pretentious, way too many casual observers of the fight game discount Askren as he had a tumultuous UFC run. Askren’s octagon efforts saw him go 1-2 and take back to back defeats. One of those losses for Askren being the quickest KO in UFC history to Jorge Masvidal at UFC 239.

Also, many on MMA Twitter seem to fixate on the gifs of when Ben Askren took on Demian Maia.

While Askren isn’t someone that would be referred to as a K1 level striker, his fighting experience overall is not to be discounted especially opposite Jake Paul who has a pair of pro fights.

I think as we encroach closer to this fight, the odds will move to reflect better on Askren. Not to say he’ll become the outright favorite, but I think the recency bias of Paul’s viral KO has some overestimating his combat potential.

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