Eyes on the prize: Jake Paul already defeated Nate Diaz in the ring, but the YouTube personality isn’t done with the UFC fan favorite yet.
In an exclusive interview with Us Weekly, Paul, 26, teased what he’s got planned after beating Diaz, 38, via a unanimous decision during their August 5 match at the American Airlines Center in Dallas. “I’m just going to continue to take fights and raise the level of opposition,” the “BS w/ Jake Paul” podcast host said, noting he may “potentially” do a “MMA [fight]” against Nate Diaz.”
Diaz isn’t the only fighter Paul is hoping to face off against. “I feel like I already fought pretty much all [of] these legends and have pretty much crossed everyone off of my checklist,” he continued. But, “I think the person who I want now — and who I have my eyes set on — is Canelo [Álvarez].”
That’s not to say Álvarez, 33, shares the same vision: The world-class boxer recently told Mirror Fighting, “My level is another level. I think [Paul] needs to enjoy what he’s doing and that’s it.”
Paul’s next fight is TBD for now, but he’s already mentally preparing himself by using naysayers’ negativity to inspire him in the ring. “When a lot of people want you to lose, that energy can either push you down or it can motivate you, and I’ve always let it motivate me,” he shared. “A big part of my success is rising against the wind. There’s always going to be critics, [so] you have to let it fuel you versus letting it take you down.”
One thing that no longer holds Paul down? The weight of his past. As Us previously reported, the Bizaardvark alum opened up about life in the spotlight, his complicated relationship with his father and various controversies he’s been involved in in Untold: Jake Paul the Problem Child.
Paul told Us that he feels “liberated” after sharing his story in the Netflix anthology series: “I think I’ve been this misunderstood public figure for long time and that’s never fun,” he said. “I’ve kind of embraced it, but I think that people are starting to see this different side of me that has always been there.”
After living a decade under the microscope, Paul has learned a lesson or two — and has a message for his younger self. “I would just say it’s all going to be OK,” he said. “Because a lot of times when you’re young and going through hard times, you just don’t know if everything’s going to be OK.”
Paul is already looking ahead: When asked where he’d like to be in 10 years, he told Us he’d be “very, very grateful” to be “happy, making the world a better place — and a father.”