Jake Paul and Tyron Woodley were involved in a scuffle Thursday afternoon following a media conference after a member of Paul’s team was apparently talking trash to Woodley’s mother in the crowd.
After the media conference in Cleveland previewing Sunday’s bout between the YouTuber and former UFC champion, someone with Paul started jawing at Woodley’s mom and sister. Things quickly escalated in the crowd at the Hilton hotel ballroom they were in, and Woodley and his family were then removed from the room after shoving ensued.
Nobody was injured in the incident, though be warned, there is plenty of language that is NSFW.
“One thing I don’t do is disrespect,” Woodley said afterward, via ESPN. “And when disrespect comes to my mother, it’s a whole issue. F*** this money, f*** this bag, f*** the pay-per-view, f*** the fight. When it comes to that, it will not be tolerated.”
‘He don’t know no better’
Woodley, according to ESPN, said that he heard someone talking to his mom while he and Paul were squaring off on stage.
“I'm looking, I'm trying to do the face-off and I hear him going back and forth with my mom,” Woodley said, via ESPN. “Any time something is going back and forth, that's unacceptable. I don't care who you are, what nationality you are. It's unacceptable."
Paul told ESPN that he doesn’t think an apology is needed, though he admitted that he wasn’t happy with what happened.
"I'm sitting here talking about how much I love my mom, how much I love my girlfriend," Paul said, via ESPN. "Then of course Tyron's mom gets into an altercation. I just wish it was something else. If it was something else, I'd be like, 'Great we sold more pay-per-views.' On this day, with how it went down, I just didn't like it.
"This is the fight business. This is part of it. Sometimes I think we forget that. While I am upset, it's like yeah, this isn't soccer where everyone is kind and respectful. We're trying to take each other's heads off, literally. This is a dangerous sport. So it is a reminder going into Sunday that you've got to protect yourself at all times."
Woodley, though, doesn’t see it that way at all.
While he’s willing to put up with a lot of things as a fighter, messing with his mom was a big step too far.
“That’s not an antic,” Woodley said, via ESPN. “That’s disrespect. That’s an outlier … He could have took my hat, took my f***ing glasses. Made a joke. He could have even shoved me. He would have got slapped, but still. He crossed the line.”
Showtime reviewing incident
Showtime Sports president Stephen Espinoza said that he is reviewing footage of the incident to determine how to best move forward ahead of Sunday’s fight at the Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse.
“This has been a pretty heated promotion and sometimes family gets involved,” Espinoza said in a statement, via ESPN. “I think there were things on both sides that crossed the line. It erupted pretty suddenly and quickly dispersed before anything happened. The reality is it's never something we want to see and we'll definitely take steps to make sure that it doesn't happen on this promotion and hopefully on future promotions."
Though things calmed down in the ballroom, tensions are still extremely high headed into the fight — in which Paul is listed as a -200 favorite on BetMGM.
"He don't know no better," Woodley said of Paul, via ESPN. "He don't know this lifestyle. I'll shake this whole f***ing room in a way you ain't never seen. F*** the UFC s***, f*** the knockout s***. I will f***ing start hurting people. You'll start seeing orange [Paul's team's colors] start dropping and hitting the floor."