Social Media Sultans. Jake Paul versus Gib.
YouTube legends Jake Paul and AnEsonGib deserve no less a moniker after hitting the FanDuel betting board for their Thursday night boxing match in Miami, site of the Super Bowl three days later.
For their six-round pro debut:
- FanDuel has Paul at -182 and Gib at +132
- Added prop bets provide a huge opportunity for anyone with an inkling of their abilities.
- Individual knockout rounds for Paul range from 12-1 to 14-1 in rounds 1-6.
- Gib’s individual knockout victory range is 21-23-1 throughout rounds 1 -6.
For what it’s worth, boxing legend Shane Mosley, who trains Paul, predicts a knockout for him within three rounds. Yes, he’s supposed to say something like that, but if Mosley is accurate, the payout would be strong.
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Masters of the Medium
This is an extraordinary level of acceptance for two boxing-party crashers. They are listed as one of the featured bouts on DAZN in their very first fight.
They hold a coveted slot normally reserved for Olympic champions and projected boxing stars launching pro careers.
Think Sugar Ray Leonard, Evander Holyfield, Oscar DeLaHoya, Floyd Mayweather and now … YouTubers.
Credit them for creating interest.
Paul and Gib appear on the same card as real boxing stars Demetrius Andrade, Tevin Farmer and Daniel Roman, who defend world titles.
- According to FanDuel, Farmer is -210 for his super-featherweight title defense against Joseph Diaz
- Andrade a prohibitive 45-1 choice in his middleweight title defense versus Luke Keeler.
DraftKings does not list Paul and Gib, but has
Out OF Their League?
How do Paul and Gib share the same venue and a betting board with several of boxing’s premier performers?
Social media, baby. Self-generated stature.
Jake became visible along with his brother Logan Paul on the app Vine, in which he’d post six-second videos performing stunts.
He played the character Dirk Mann on the Disney Channel series “Bizaardvark” and became a YouTube celebrity with nearly 20 million subscribers.
Paul parlayed the social-media spark into the edgy “Everyday Bro,” a rap-style YouTube production grabbing a significant 4.6 million DIS-likes.
That’s just as effective, if not more so than “likes” because it indicates his willingness to be an antagonist. This is star power. Even Justin Bieber is on the dislike list.
Do you think those numbers are high?
The all-time YouTube leader for eyeballs is PewDiePie, who rose to prominence by giving commentary while playing video games and has a reported YouTube following of 100 million.
We wonder who he’s going to fight next.
Gib has over 2 million subscribers to his channel. He became known for doing unusual short comedy videos along with videos of himself playing the FIFA soccer video game.
Gib, whose real name is Ali Al-Fakhri, is friends with The Sidemen, a British YouTube group that featured KSI, who recently nipped Logan Paul in a decent boxing match.
KSI is trained by two-time heavyweight champion Shannon Briggs, suggesting that boxing newcomers will steadily gain some real ability.
That also breathes some promotional energy into Paul facing the friend of the fighter who beat his brother.
Taking It Seriously
DAZN dispatched top commentator Todd Grisham to host a press conference with Paul and Gib early in January. The pair could hardly discuss boxing because they are essentially novices.
So the trash-talk was unique. Gib chided Paul’s supposedly falling social media numbers
And Gib said “he [Jake Paul] took down my video because I hurt his feelings.”
“My mother has more Instagram followers than you,” shot back Paul, who said he wanted to knock the big-nosed kid out. “And what would you know about views? The first thing you see when you get up is that big [bleeping] nose.”
Gib and Paul have taunted each other through social media, a tactic that would have been considered unprofessional a few years ago. Now it’s a mandate, handed down by DAZN and the event’s promoters.
Get eyeballs and betting numbers on this fight.
Under normal circumstances, if they could even be sanctioned to fight, Paul and Gib would open the undercard, several hours removed from the main event.
But here they are headlined via the time-honored revenue trick of sounding off on a visible platform.
DAZN, which elevated Paul and Gib to prime-time stature, takes a no-holds-barred approach to recruiting young subscribers.
It held up the start of the Canelo-Sergey Kovalev fight in November, waiting for the conclusion of the Nate Diaz-Jorge Masvidal UFC 244.
While the live audience waited, they were shown the UFC event and the boxing match did not begin until after 1 a.m. EST.
Canelo, DAZN’s $365 million cash-cow, had to wait for Diaz-Masvidal so that DAZN could try and lure UFC fans to its subscription. DAZN was slammed for it by their boxing fans but did generate subscribers and shrugged off the criticism.
Extending its tentacles to the social-media realm is simply another move in that direction.
Paul and Gib, meanwhile, have adopted the pursuit of name-recognition leveraging via boxing, from Kim Kardashian, Tonya Harding, Jose Canseco, and others.
Like their predecessors, they won’t be confused for fighters right away. Unlike them, they will attract bettors. All it takes is for their YouTube followers to wager against each other.
No Experience needed. Just Big Bets.
How many bets his fight draw remains to be seen, but the concept plays into a financial artery. Gamblers care only about the competition level within an event. They want to handicap it, find a wagering edge and bet into their strength.
This is part of the everything goes gambling age. One can wager on elections, even the weather, sweating out extreme temperatures or placing futures on which will be the most severe high and low months.
There are huge pockets to bet on here too.
Just as boxing formed a circuit with The Contender and created stars like Sergio Mora (now a DAZN commentator), it will serve the esports and millennial generation by showcasing its personalities.
If the YouTubers lure bets, they will form their own boxing niche.
It remains to be seen how many wagers Paul and Gib attract, but the fact this event hit the betting board at all is remarkable.