Let’s be honest: When social media star Logan Paul boxes Floyd Mayweather in an 8-round exhibition fight on Sunday, June 6 at 8pm ET, a lot of people will be rooting for both of them to lose. It’s not a mystery why. With a perfect 50-0 record, Mayweather is unquestionably one of the greatest boxers ever to step in the ring. But his brash personality and rap sheet also mark him as one of the world's most hated fighters. Similarly, Logan Paul has achieved undeniable success as an influencer and social media personality, but, along with his brother Jake, Paul’s antics are as likely to annoy as entertain.
To give you a better idea of why they're both loved and loathed, we put together this list of some of their craziest and most controversial moments. To order the fight on Sling for $49.99, follow this link.
Sucker Punch or Smart?
Mayweather is widely recognized as one of best defensive boxers of all-time, and arguably his best defensive technique is his ability to avoid his potential opponents in the prime of their careers (sorry, but it’s true). But really, his fighting style is an extension of his boxing savvy, as Mayweather often lets his opponents tire themselves out before taking control in late rounds.
Perhaps the clearest example of his savvy also played a role in carving out his villainous persona. In the fourth round of Mayweather’s 2011 fight against Victor Ortiz, Floyd was struck by an illegal headbutt, which cost Ortiz a point on the scorecard. But after fighters touched gloves and Ortiz leaned in for an apologetic hug, Floyd knocked him out with a hook-jab combo that caught him unawares. As the commentators in the clip above point out, it was perfectly legal and Ortiz shouldn’t have let his guard down. Still, legal and cheap aren’t mutually exclusive, and while it highlighted Mayweather’s situational awareness, it also highlighted his willingness to do whatever it takes to win.
Kitty Cat Car Jump
Logan Paul and his brother Jake first rose to fame on the short-form video app Vine, where they earned a significant following thanks to their pranks and stunts. “Kitty Cat Car Jump,” one of Logan Paul's first videos to go viral, is a little of both. In it, Paul leaps over speeding cars on the freeway in order to save a stray cat, dodging certain death by a matter of inches. It’s both an amazing feat of athleticism (especially the motorcycle he backflips over) and an incredibly irritating prank. Except that the gag isn’t on the motorists who narrowly avoid catastrophe, it’s on the viewer: the video was made with “a combination of freeway footage and a greenscreen” according to Vulture.
So Long Conor
When Floyd Mayweather agreed to fight UFC star Connor McGregor, the circus-like press conferences hyping the fight threatened to overwhelm the bout itself. But when the opening bell finally rang, the fight turned out to be one of the most entertaining of Mayweather’s career (SBNation lists it as tenth in his 50-fight career). For someone fighting in his first professional boxing match, McGregor was exceptional, and early on it looked like he might get the best of the 40-year-old Mayweather. But as he’s done so many times before, Mayweather simply outlasted McGregor, waiting until the 25-minute mark (when MMA fights normally end) to go on the attack, resulting in a TKO in Round 10.
If you’re over the age of 30, there’s a good chance you hadn’t heard of Logan Paul until early 2018, when he found himself embroiled in controversy after filming the body of a recently deceased man in Japan’s “suicide forest” for his daily YouTube vlog. Although he quickly removed the video, it reportedly received over 6 million views in the 24 hours it was up. Paul issued a series of apologies and has raised money for suicide awareness and prevention, but in retrospect, this was clearly Paul’s heel turn moment.
Given Floyd’s infamous temper and the Paul brothers’ anything-goes personalities, it wasn’t the least bit surprising that the press conference announcing their fight turned into its own viral spectacle. The short version is that as Mayweather made his way through the media, Jake Paul approached him, jawed at him, snatched the TBE hat off his head, and dashed. Needless to say, this did not go over well with Mayweather and his security entourage. It was such a fiasco that CBS Sports has already produced an oral history of the moment (Jake Paul: “It's pretty simple. I seen his hat and I was just like, 'I should take that hat.'”). If the fight is even half as crazy as the press conference, we should be in for quite the spectacle.
Floyd Mayweather and Logan Paul will square off this Sunday, June 6, at 8pm ET. Follow the link below to order right now on Sling.