Triller Fight Club Report: Jake Paul stops Ben Askren in the first round

Originally published at Triller Fight Club Report: Jake Paul stops Ben Askren in the first round

The bizarre concept of Triller Fight Club presented a mixture of fighting, live music, and robots for nearly four hours on Saturday night.

The event can best be described as a science project where the science is ignored and everything is tossed together with the hopes of an explosion so grand that everyone turns their head while reaching for their wallets.

Its poster child is Jake Paul, a YouTube and social media star that has carved out a niche within boxing that has garnered attention while appealing to an audience that demands spectacle over substance, largely because the latter is being consumed to enjoy the former.

Triller gained the attention of the fight world last November when they put together an exhibition fight between Mike Tyson and Roy Jones Jr. The experiment worked and garnered a reported 1.6 million pay-per-view buys, therefore, necessitating the obvious follow-up and fighters with name recognition understanding a giant payday when it presents itself.

The 24-year old Paul fought on the undercard of November’s event, knocking out former NBA player Nate Robinson. This time, the promotional machine was behind Paul as its headliner and leaning on the Boxing vs. MMA story to carry the show. This led to retired fighter Ben Askren selected for the fight, a world-renowned wrestler but with limited striking skills that were tailor-made for Paul.

With a hip replacement behind him, Askren appeared at Friday’s weigh-in at 191 pounds with a physique that was compared to that of Vince Vaughn and “a bag of milk” by the commentary team on Saturday.

Paul was the quicker fighter and needed little time before connecting with a left jab that set up a right hand dropping Askren in an emphatic fashion. Askren returned to his feet, took the standing eight count, but referee Brian Stutts made the judgment call to wave off the fight at 1:59 of the opening round.

The stoppage was debated by broadcast members Al Bernstein and Mario Lopez, who felt Askren could continue and was as close to serious analysis as you would find on the finish. Snoop Dogg and Pete Davidson had minimal insight and were there for entertainment purposes with Snoop opening a bottle of alcohol to celebrate and Davidson smoking throughout the fight.

Triller is spending obscene money to put these shows on from the fighters they are attracting, production, and the bevy of musical performances that included Justin Bieber, Snoop Dogg, Ice Cube, Doja Cat, Major Lazer, Diplo, The Black Keys, and Saweetie on Saturday night.

The musical performances were heavily advertised but took up way too much of the broadcast as the four pay-per-view fights were spread over four hours. This included two fights that ended early and none of them going past the sixth round.

In the other fight involving an MMA fighter, former UFC heavyweight champion Frank Mir dropped a unanimous decision to former WBO Cruiserweight Champion Steve “USS” Cunningham. Mir earned the moral victory of lasting six rounds and landed a few clean strikes, but it was Cunningham’s superior boxing skills that earned him the easy decision.

Oscar De La Hoya was a guest on commentary for the fight between Cunningham and Mir and sounded like a mess as he had one of the worst broadcast performances you will ever be privy to hearing. He was there to promote his fight against an opponent yet-to-be-named on July 3rd and it came off very sad to think this man is going to fight at the age of 48 while sounding terrible on the air.

This card will be judged based on the business it generates and not on the quality of fights or entertainment. The goal of Triller is to be a wild and out-of-control party that appeals to a young audience that will hopefully, spend money to either be entertained or take part in the train wreck. They struck gold last November but typically, it’s diminishing returns with these types of attractions. There is no doubt that this card did have a lot of attention in the lead-up through fight night and its success would rest on the shoulders of Jake Paul if the returns are high.

The company is set for another card on June 5th featuring a fight between Evander Holyfield and Kevin McBride.

*Jake Paul def. Ben Askren by TKO at 1:59 of Round 1
*Regis Prograis def. Ivan Redkach by technical decision (60-54, 60-54, 59-54)
*Steve Cunningham def. Frank Mir by unanimous decision (60-54, 60-54, 58-56)
*Joe Fournier def. Reykon by TKO at 3:00 of Round 3

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Quite possibly Dana White had a heart attack after seeing that.

I dont know anything about Jake Paul outside of his brother being at mania. Is this a huge upset? Or is Paul considered a legit fighter?

Neither really. Jake Paul would not be competitive with legitimate high level boxers, but he’s still at a higher skill level then Ben Askren. Askren is an elite level wrestler, but genuinely one of the worst strikers in the history of high level MMA. So this was pretty much the expected result.


That and Paul looked like a Heavweight against Askren.

I’ll give Paul his due when he starts fighting people his own size.

I don’t even know if Triller actually had a weigh in for this fight. They said it was a Cruiserweight fight. Which is basically close to a Heavyweight fight in boxing.

Its an upset if your an MMA fan who still thinks that MMA fighters can succeed in Boxing. A lot of those fans were in denial on twitter. Calling it a fix. As if Ben Askren needing to be taken out on stretcher would have made it better.

Also John Pollock is taken it easy on Oscar Delahoya. The man was a rambling slurring drunk during his commentary. The only thing I can compare it too was Jake the Snake in Heroes of Wrestling. He’s clearly falling off the wagon again.

How long is too long to ask for a Rewind-A-Wai for this event?


Would Oscar De La Hoya need to get a licence or I’m guessing they’ll find a loophole.

If Triller is getting away with Jake Paul fighting smaller guys with very little training.

I won’t be shocked if they get away with putting a inebriated Oscar DeLaHoya in a fight.

Id be interested in seeing how much money they paid out to the celebrities and boxers vs. how much they made at the end of the day. Can they really keep this up? You think they could get Oscar fighting is his famous fishnets?

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If they did a million buys @ $40 that = more than AEW and NXT generate in a year in tv rights. Lol. Big big business being done. It’s truly “sports” entertainment Done right in PPV format from a pure $$$ standpoint

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You’re not wrong, but PPV doesn’t net you the same as TV rights, right?. If they get 1mil buys therefore grossing 40mil, dont they pay half of that to the PPV provider?


Depends on the TV rights deal you get. If its the same deal as UFC and WWE received then yeah. If it isn’t then Triller made more money on the PPV.


I’m assuming they bought Fite TV for this sole reason - to have the means to bring more of the PPV money in house. Until then, it’s probably not even close to that full number. Plus their talent costs are probably pretty inflated at the moment. Or maybe I’m thinking too highly of AC Slater’s price point.

Anyway, I fucking hated it all except the slap fight.

But I totally get why this product is extremely popular right now.

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The success rate of MMA fighters going into boxing must be a lot worse than wrestlers going into MMA.

You mean Pro Wrestlers/aka sports entertainers or actual Amateur Wrestlers?

This was maybe the dumbest event I’ve ever seen. And to be fair to myself, I didn’t pay for this garbage. Tried to tune in at the beginning of this circus shit-show and somehow managed to make it through the first fight before shame, disgust and embarrassment made me switch back over to the UFC. BUT, I followed twitter updates figuring I’d tune back in for the main event. The twitter updates I received in the next 2 hours were unbelievably stupid, and made me regret that I ever cared even a tiny bit about this event.
And then the main event hits and I tune back in to see Michael Buffer completely embarrass himself and this whole “outlaw mud show” by calling Askren “Ben Askew”, or was it “Ben Askyou”. Askren showed up in the worst shape of his life, looked every bit as bad a standup fighter as always, and got KTFO in the first round. My shady stream crapped out right before the knockout, and I didn’t even bother to wait for an instant replay (which I don’t even think they had the tech or ability to pull off), because this whole thing was a waste of time and space.

Meltzer reported that the Triller event had circa 5.2 million searches and both days of Mania combined was circa 750,000.

Honestly I just want to know if Dana White is actually going to pay the $1 million he bet on Ben Askren.

Seeing Dana get embarrassed is worth it. Even though I really hate Jake Paul just as much.

Obviously pro-wrestlers.

I would think that the transition is much more difficult. Most MMA guys don’t have great striking and you need to unlearn a bunch of habits and instincts in regards to takedowns, kicks etc. also most of them aren’t fully transitioning to the sport of boxing, rather just competing in a match.

Lots of pro-wrestlers have at least some Amateur wrestling or martial arts training so it is a more natural transition. Now given that they tend to have way less experince than actual fighters it isn’t always great but it is easier.

I mean let’s look at the pro-wrestlers who have gone to MMA
-Brock was an NCAA national champion in wrestling

  • Lashley was an NAIA college wrestling champ and millitary wrestling champ as well as an Olympic hopeful
  • Hager NCAA all American wrestler
  • CM punk - no real background did terribly
  • Del Rio competed for Mexico at the pan am games and medaled in Greco Roman wrestling

Those are the big names I can think of that made the transition.