If combat sports have learned anything in 2021, it is that anybody can participate in a boxing match, whether they should or not. During this past year, combat sports fans have witnessed American rapper BlueFace enter the boxing ring. Likewise, social media star Austin McBroom, among others, sported a pair of boxing gloves. Professional strongman and actor Hafthor Björnsson picked up his first professional boxing match victory back in September, and of course, 37-year-old former Bellator and ONE Championship welterweight champion Ben Askren stepped into the boxing ring this past year.
So, in a boxing world filled with—well, anybody, here are five ridiculous bookings for boxing in 2022.
Deji vs. Bryce Hall
Social media influencer Deji, whose real name is Oladeji Olatunji, has not quite had his way with the sport of boxing. Losing to both Jake Paul and Vinnie Hacker in his exhibition efforts, the 25-year-old influencer released a YouTube video on December 2nd titled “Redemption” highlighting his training for a comeback fight. With speculations revolving around as to who the London, England native may fight, many speculate Austin McBroom to be his opponent. However, with Austin McBroom currently tied up with legal trouble, Bryce Hall could be the next man up. Hall, who has amassed more than 21 million followers on Tik Tok, fell short in his boxing efforts against McBroom in the YouTube vs. TikTok event.
Eddie Hall vs. Hafthor Björnsson
This booking is rather obvious, but one that has failed to come to fruition in 2021. With the original bout announcement, tagged as the “Heaviest Boxing Match in History”, coming in November 2020, the fight date was booked for September 18th, 2021. The pair of strongmen had been training for months prior with Björnsson even competing in exhibition bouts with Steven Ward and Simon Vallily.
Unfortunately, the fight fell through when Eddie Hall reportedly suffered a bicep injury during training. Instead, Björnsson squared off with Devon Larratt on the original fight date, earning a first-round KO over the Canadian professional arm-wrestler.
Vitor Belfort vs. Tito Ortiz
With mixed martial arts history between the two, Vitor Belfort vs. Tito Ortiz would be an easy cash grab for a promotion like Triller. Belfort, who handily stopped boxing legend Evander Holifield in an exhibition match at Triller Fight Club Legends II in September, was on the wrong side of a split decision against Tito Ortiz at UFC 51.
Ortiz competed in the same boxing event as Belfort in September, sharing the ring with combat sports legend Anderson Silva. Silva made quick work of the 46-year-old “Huntington Beach Bad Boy”, knocking him out cold in the first round.
Floyd Mayweather vs. Logan Paul 2
The central theme of these, what can be called “money media” fights, is money. If anyone knows anything about money, it is Floyd “Money” Mayweather. Mayweather clashed with YouTube sensation-turned-boxer Logan Paul in an eight-round exhibition bout in June. The catchweight exhibition saw no winner but saw both men earning incredible paychecks. Mayweather earned $10 million just to show up, and after all was said and done, the boxing legend self-reported a cash-out of about $100 million. As for Paul, the numbers are a bit more vague, but the 26-year-old social media personality made somewhere near $30 million. Why not run it back?
Jake Paul vs. Anderson Silva
With the news breaking that Tommy Fury has pulled out of his fight with Jake Paul on December 18th, the rematch between Paul and ex-UFC champ Tyron Woodley will take place. Despite the outcome of this fight, one can only look forward to the continued antics of “The Problem Child” in the sport of boxing in 2022.
Anderson Silva, who has fledged out a rather impressive professional boxing stint at the age of 46, has noted about a potential fight with Paul stating, “Everything is possible…So, we’ll see; maybe this is possible too”.
UFC President Dana White also chimed in on the potential fight stating, “I (expletive) guarantee you this: You ain’t gonna see Jake Paul calling out Anderson Silva. That I (expletive) promise you.” In response, Jake Paul tweeted at the UFC president calling for a boxing match with welterweight star Jorge Masvidal. Who wins this potential matchup, Jake Paul or Anderson Silva?
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