Former UFC welterweight champion Tyron Woodley feels he came close to finishing his boxing opponent Jake Paul and has a genuine reason why he let up, according to BjPenn.com. In their first bout, Woodley had Paul on the ropes, but Paul (4-0) ended up edging Woodley (0-1) by a split decision.
Close, But Not Close Enough
Woodley wobbled Paul with a right hand early in the fight, but he never followed up on the opportunity. Some said it was because of a no-knockout clause in the contract, or the fight was fixed. However, Woodley cleared the air and said there was no such clause in the contract and attributed it to a torn labrum he sustained in his 2017 title defense against Demian Maia.
Shoulder injuries are serious for professional athletes, and they can stick around for years. That being said, Woodley dealt with this for the last four years, which could have affected his performance in the later fights against Kamaru Usman, Colby Covington, and Gilbert Burns.
“My Moneymaker Was at Jeopardy“
Woodley told MMA Junkie the injury flared up during the fight with Paul, saying:
"When you watch the punch, I punched him, he sprung off the ropes, and he went back into my arm," Woodley explained. "So it kind of hyperextended my elbow on my shoulder, so at that point, my moneymaker was at jeopardy, so I had to try and walk him down, make him punch so I could punch straight shots. Straight shots off of his punches, very similar to what I had to do against Demian Maia when I tore my labrum in that fight."
"I couldn’t throw looping overhand rights because it made me feel like my shoulder was in jeopardy. So my left arm and my right arm and my shoulder, they [sic] was just throbbing like a motherf*cker."
This weekend, Woodley fights Jake Paul yet again, looking to snap a five-fight losing streak. If he can win, he will gain much more respect amongst the boxing community and retain his legacy as a former champion and combat sports legend.
How do you think Woodley will fair in the rematch, and do you think he will score a knockout? Let us know in the comments!
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