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Jake Paul opponent Hasim Rahman Jr has claimed some 'shady' moves were made by his opponent's team to get him into their August 6 clash.
YouTube loudmouth Paul was set to face Fury, the brother of world heavyweight champion Tyson, next month at Madison Square Garden. That fight was cancelled though when Fury was blocked from entering the US for a scheduled press conference in New York.
Paul gave his rival a week to sort out his visa issues at the US embassy but Fury never made a trip to fix the issues so a decision was made to pull him out of the fight. The YouTuber, who is 5-0 as a professional fighter, will now face Rahman Jnr, the son of former world heavyweight champion Hasim Snr.
READ MORE: Jake Paul given warning about replacing Tommy Fury with Hasim Rahman Jr for August fight
But Rahman Jr has opened up on how those negotiations went to get him in as Fury's replacement at late notice.
“It was a little shady,” Rahman Jr told The MMA Hour. “His coach called me, and he’s asking me how much I weigh, how I’m feeling about my last fight, what I’ve been doing in the gym, how much I’ve been sparring.
“But he was asking me under the pretence that I would come in and spar Jake as a southpaw for the Anderson Silva [fight]. I’m thinking they’re about to call me back and get me on a flight to Puerto Rico to help them out for Anderson.
“An hour later, I get a call saying they want to fight. So, all those questions were really trying to line me up to fight me. It was never a sparring situation.”
Meanwhile, former world cruiserweight champion Tony Bellew has said Paul has taken on a much bigger challenge than Fury in this fight.
Rahman Jr is 12-1 as a professional and nowhere near the level of his father as he is coming off a defeat but will be the first boxer Paul has ever faced with his previous opponents a mix of MMA fighters, a basketball player and a gamer.
In his DAZN column, Bellew said: "I’m shocked he went for Rahman Jr. Make no mistake, there are plenty of flaws with Rahman Jr. and he’s nowhere near the level his father was, or will he ever likely be.
"He’s been brought along okay as a professional up to this point, but there was a bump in the road earlier this year when he was stopped by James Morrison, the son of former world champion, Tommy. Has that result had an impact on Paul’s decision to select Rahman?
"Whatever his reasons for insisting on Rahman Jr., I’m massively impressed that Paul has taken this step because this is a significant step up from what he’s used to as he’s in there with an actual professional boxer. This is a much harder fight than his original contest with Fury, and I’m trying to figure out why Paul has gone down this route."
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- Jake Paul
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