For those who are familiar with YouTube, KSI and Logan Paul are familiar names as powerhouses in the online community. However, boxers they certainly are not. On August 25th, the popular YouTubers held an amateur boxing match against one another on YouTube’s pay per view platform. The match resulted in a draw, which leads to one conclusion- a rematch is inevitable. But what does this match mean for the sanctity of boxing?
Paul earlier in the year made a vlog in which he ventured into the sacred forests of Aokigahara and ignorantly featured footage of a dead body he had found
For those not aware, KSI is a British YouTuber famous for his gaming videos and Logan Paul is an American YouTuber who was previously a Vine star. Both are equally unqualified as boxers, and yet they decided to host a live stream boxing match on YouTube which fans had to pay a fee to watch. The hype for the match was intense across both ‘stars’ social media due to a past conflict between the two YouTubers. Unfortunately for paying fans, the match itself resulted in a draw, an anti-climactic result, but also entirely predictable.
Both YouTubers have not been without controversy – in particular, Logan Paul. Paul earlier in the year made a vlog in which he ventured into the sacred forests of Aokigahara and ignorantly featured footage of a dead body he had found. This, of course, created rip waves amongst media outlets at the narcissistic lack of respect Paul had towards a life other than his own. Miraculously, Paul’s PR team managed to stitch together Paul’s tattered reputation. The peak of this ‘Paul revival’ was the spectacle we would all very much like to spectate if not play a part in – a boxing match in which Paul would get punched.
The match itself is incredibly underwhelming compared to watching a fight between true trained boxers
The sport of boxing is world-renowned, with matches that can cost viewers a lot of money to watch, and the champion is justifiably a people’s hero. However, in recent years the sport of boxing has been taken as a joke. Last year Conor McGregor, a champion MMA fighter, challenged undefeated boxing heavyweight champion Floyd Mayweather to a boxing match. McGregor, so sure of his fighting ability, created an intense amount anticipation for the match, which thousands of people paid to watch. McGregor lost the match, which was inevitable given he is not a boxer. What made the McGregor vs Mayweather fight different from the shambolic Paul vs KSI match is that despite McGregor’s arrogance about his ability to box, he is indeed a champion fighter in his own field. The two Youtubers, however, are famed for making videos, not pushing themselves in a ring.
It seems a crying shame that amateurs who don’t care about boxing are the central focus for a sport that deserves more respect. My opinion about the entire match is that celebrities sell; the match itself is incredibly underwhelming compared to watching a fight between true trained boxers. However, the media hype surrounding the fight is what made people pay their hard-earned money to watch, as we want to see popular names fight each other rather than unknown sportsmen. It’s a shame that our celebrity-saturated culture may come at the cost of sportsmanship.
Paul and KSI will have a rematch because of the money
The question remains, is the Logan Paul vs KSI match a disgrace towards the sport of boxing? In a word, yes. It’s purely for monetary gain and publicity. Neither of the two YouTubers are boxers and therefore don’t understand the immense amount of training that a boxer must go through to be match ready. Despite the McGregor vs Mayweather match being a rocky moment in boxing’s reputation, it is in no way as disrespectful as the farcical YouTube match.
Inevitably, Paul and KSI will have a rematch because the money they earned from fans watching will easily buy them new cars and flashy watches. It is indeed a shame for boxing that two amateurs are profiting from a sport that takes years of discipline to train for. If two public figures want to ‘fight’ each other for easy profit, they shouldn’t call it boxing and bring shame to the sport for money but instead, stick to online passive-aggressive tweets.