Whatever your prediction for the first Jake Paul vs. Tyron Woodley boxing match, you were probably at least a little bit correct.
There were really two camps ahead of the grudge match. One side argued in favor of Paul pointing to his length, youth and volume versus the famously reluctant power puncher. On the other hand, that power counts for something, and Woodley’s right hand has felled far better fighters than “The Problem Child.”
Yeah, both sides were right!
For a majority of the fight, Paul outworked Woodley behind a long jab. Then, Woodley did finally land his overhand, and it nearly ended the contest in an instant. The end result was a split-decision, and though it should have been unanimous for Paul, it’s clear that both men could have done more to firmly win the bout.
Let’s break down those adjustments ahead of the rematch:
What Went Well: Paul spent a majority of the fight working behind his jab, controlling distance, and generally employing his gameplan. He never quite managed to time Woodley with his counter right, but Paul did well with the check hook, at least one of which stunned the former champion. Above all else, Paul maintained a higher output than “T-Wood” to earn the victory.
What Went Poorly: The ropes saved Paul from a right hand knockdown, so that was less than ideal. Beyond that single shot, Paul fatigued a bit too much, given that youth and hard work are the primary foundations of his boxing success.
What Can Be Improved: There are two main areas where Paul can improve, and they certainly tie together. First and foremost, it comes down to geography. Paul, as mentioned, is the bigger and higher output fighter. He has to use those advantages and press Woodley to his backfoot, rather than allow “T-Wood” to back him up off mere presence alone.
Historically, Woodley’s great flaw is backing up into the ropes/cage and doing nothing. Paul has to encourage that trait by putting him on the ropes and keeping him there with a poking jab. That brings us to the second room for improvement: Paul slowed down a lot in the first bout.
Hopefully, Paul is coming into this fight better prepared for an eight-round battle. If he gets tired and lets Woodley keep up with him on the punch numbers, he only has himself to blame.
What Went Well: Woodley damn-near knocked Paul out with an expertly timed overhand right!
What Went Poorly: Most everything else. Woodley bizarrely opted to stare at Paul for long periods of time, even after hurting him. Even now, Woodley insists that he won the fight, ignoring the simple fact that to win a boxing match, one must consistently throw punches.
What Can Be Improved: I don’t know how many times for how many fights I’ve written that Tyron Woodley needs to throw more punches, but ... Tyron Woodley really needs to throw more punches!
Woodley really made very few adjustments in his move to the boxing ring. As a mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter, Woodley would hang out at distance, occasionally exploding into a combination or counter shot focused on scoring his right. That’s precisely what he did vs. Paul, except in the ring, he can’t even fire the rare low kick.
The former UFC Welterweight champion has to maintain an active jab here. He may not match Paul’s reach, but if Woodley gets his head off the center line and advances behind his own lead hand, he can still compete with Paul in that realm. Plus, sticking Paul with some jabs to the jaw and torso will help set up the right, as well as even up the volume game.
Finally, if Woodley hurts his opponent a second time, he has to actually chase the finish and that $500,000 bonus.
This Saturday, Jake Paul and Tyron Woodley will battle for a second time. Can Woodley earn revenge, or will Paul continue his undefeated rise?
MMAmania.com will have LIVE coverage of the “Paul vs. Woodley 2” PPV main card this weekend (Sat., Dec. 18, 2021) right here. The FITE/Showtime PPV kicks off at 9 p.m. ET, with Paul and Woodley likely to make the walk closer to midnight.
For more news and detailed information on “Paul vs. Woodley 2” click here. For the complete PPV fight card and untelevised “Prelims” lineup click here. Bet on the full Paul-Woodley 2 card at DraftKings Sportsbook.