Baltimore-born Hasim Rahman Jr. and Jake Paul spar verbally in promotion for next month’s boxing match

Whether Baltimore-born Hasim Rahman Jr., the son of former world heavyweight champion Hasim Rahman, can teach social-media-star-turned-boxer Jake Paul a lesson remains to be seen.

On Tuesday afternoon, viewers of the news conference promoting their cruiserweight bout on Aug. 6 at 9 p.m. on Showtime PPV at Madison Square Garden learned Rahman Jr. can trade insults with Paul, a renowned smack talker.


For much of the 20-minute portion of their news conference, the two opponents slung barbs and swear words at each other. Even Rahman Jr.’s father, who sat on stage next to his son, was dragged into the fray.

At various points, Rahman Jr. said of Paul, whom he called “Disney Boy”:


”He’s definitely barking up the wrong tree. I’m going to [mess] you up.”

”Bring your gloves and your boots on Aug. 6 because I might knock you out of both of them.”

”I’m about to give you your first loss, stupid.”

Paul dished as good as he received, telling Rahman Jr.:

”He’s going to get beat up by a singer, a musician, a seashell collector, an amateur. I’m all of these things.”

”You’re a speed bump, another name on the list, a pawn.”

”When I beat you, you have to change your Instagram handle to ‘I let my dad down.’”

The boxers frequently went back and forth over a tense sparring session 18 months ago that spilled over. Rahman Jr. called Paul “a track star,” while Paul said his priority is fighting, not sparring.


Beyond the verbal exchanges, the fight is a chance for both fighters.

Rahman Jr., who celebrated his 31st birthday on June 15, is 12-1 as a professional but has not tangled with an opponent as popular socially as Paul is. Rahman Jr., whose last bout was a fifth-round technical knockout loss to Kenzie Morrison on April 29, acknowledged that next month’s bout could open more doors for him.

Rahman Jr. refuted Paul’s allegation on Monday that the fight might not occur because Rahman Jr. demanded a bigger payday.

“This is such a huge opportunity,” he said. “I never once even second-guessed or even doubted the outcome of this fight. I did no negotiations through the internet, and I’m not going to. Whatever they sent me, they sent me and said, ‘Look, take it or leave it. Either you take it or leave it, and there won’t be a fight.’ I took it, and that’s that, and we’re here right now.”

The 6-foot-3 Rahman weighed in at 224 pounds against Morrison. He must drop to 200 pounds to qualify for the cruiserweight level, but he said he is “already close” and it’s “not a factor.”

“I fought at 200 pounds for years in the amateurs,” he said. “I haven’t fought there as a pro yet, but I’m looking forward to bringing back them amateur days.”

The 6-1, 195-pound Jake Paul, 25, is 5-0 with four knockouts. But his list of opponents includes former 5-9 NBA star Nate Robinson, retired mixed martial artist Ben Askren and former UFC champion Tyron Woodley. Baltimore-born Hasim Rahman Jr. is the first boxer Paul will face.

The 6-1, 195-pound Paul, 25, is 5-0 with four knockouts. But his list of opponents includes former 5-9 NBA star Nate Robinson, retired mixed martial artist Ben Askren and former UFC champion Tyron Woodley. Rahman Jr. is the first boxer Paul will face.

“This is what I do,” Paul said of agreeing to a match against a better boxer than Tommy Fury, the brother of two-time world heavyweight champion Tyson Fury who was replaced by Rahman Jr. due to visa issues. “I take hard challenges and challenge myself more and more with each fight and increase the level of opposition to give the fans what they want. People say, ‘Fight a real boxer,’ so here we go. This guy is bigger than me, he has more experience. There’s no reason I should win this, but I’m proving to the world and proving to the kids that if you set your mind to something and you truly believe in yourself and you’re dedicated, then you will win.”

Rahman Jr. countered that because he brings an aura of legitimacy to the bout, he should be compensated accordingly.

“So all that stuff going back and forth about the money or whatever, I’m going to be the lowest-paid opponent, but I’m the one that’s giving you any credibility,” he said. “None of your other opponents gave you any credibility. So why shouldn’t I get more than them? But I’m not here to negotiate through the media, I’m not here to do any of that. I’m here to end this facade that you call a career. We’re going to see. We will. We’re going to see on Aug. 6 Jake Paul fall. We’re definitely going to see that.”

Hasim Rahman said he would not underestimate his son’s opponent.

“Jake is a real fighter, and we respect that,” said Rahman, 49, who is a former two-time world heavyweight champion. “But I just think that he is moving too quick. I think he picked the wrong guy at the wrong time.”


That incited Paul to quip that he was “moving too quick for your slow-a-- son who’s not going to be able to hit me.”

Paul also mocked the elder Rahman’s usage of “we” when talking about his son. “It’s me versus your son, and that’s what he doesn’t understand,” Paul said. “He thinks he’s you, and that’s his biggest mistake. He’s not you, and on Aug. 6, people are going to see that. I’m ending that whole-a-- legacy that your whole-a-- family got. It’s over with Aug. 6.”

Paul finally teased the presence of the Rahmans on the stage together, describing it as “bring your kid to work” day.

After the talk, Rahman Jr. and Paul faced each other for photos. Rahman Jr. initially stood quietly as Paul whispered in his face, but both fighters began to talk before turning away from each other and posing for the cameras.

Stephen Espinoza, president of Showtime Sports, said the fight could pay dividends for both boxers, especially Paul.

“After Tommy Fury pulled out of the fight, Jake went looking for an even bigger challenge, and he found it,” he said. “He found a tougher challenge that he probably should be facing, an opponent who is bigger than Jake, more experienced as an amateur, more experienced as a pro, a real challenge. Why take a fight that almost everyone else around you is telling you not to? Well, there’s one reason. Jake Paul is on a mission to prove himself as a credible professional boxer.”



at Madison Square Garden, New York

Aug. 6, 9 p.m.

TV: Showtime PPV