Social media star KSI will triple his number of boxing bouts in one evening after announcing he’ll face two opponents on August 27th. In a taunt to Jake Paul, the Englishman has boasted he’ll fight a professional boxer before his rival despite the American having a “three-year head start.”
KSI was already due to face rapper Swarmz after fellow YouTuber Alex Wassabi pulled out of their matchup citing a concussion. But in a groundbreaking twist, he announced on Tuesday that he’ll also take on Bulgarian Ivan Nikolov the same evening.
“Never been done before in YouTube boxing,” said the 29-year-old in a YouTube announcement. “Honestly, I don’t think it has ever been done in normal boxing, especially on pay-per-view.” George Foreman once infamously fought five opponents on the same night in 1975, as an attempted show of intimidation to rival Muhammad Ali, though the derided spectacle was far from pay-per-view standard.
“We asked Bryce Hall, we asked Dax, we asked Vinnie Hacker, we asked Taylor Holder, and they all either couldn’t do it or said ‘no.’ So we decided to fight someone who would beat all of the people I mentioned before.
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“Ladies and gentlemen, I am fighting a pro boxer for my second fight, on the same night. I am fighting Swarmz and a Bulgarian boxer on the same night. Am I insane? Probably. Am I crazy? Probably. Is this ridiculous? Probably. But are you gonna watch it? Probably.”
KSI’s only previous professional boxing match came against the elder of the Paul siblings, Logan, whom he beat over six rounds in November 2019. The Londoner will return to the ring after nearly three years out, dropping more than 30 pounds for the occasion.
“Let me talk about the pro boxer I am facing; his name is Ivan Nikolov, and he can bang,” continued KSI. “This guy is a big boy. I don’t really want to stay on the inside too much with him.
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“I think he’s going to be the most durable fighter I’ve ever faced. He loves to f****g swing, decent head movement. . .he can take bangs. He’s a pro boxer, he knows what he’s doing, he knows how to stay safe. What the f*** am I doing!?”
He later acknowledged Nikolov’s record of 3-16-2 is hardly the most intimidating at the pro level. However, KSI clarified the Bulgarian still has “more [boxing] wins than all of Jake Paul’s opponents combined.”
The event will take place at the O2 Arena on August 27, though the details surrounding the exact order of the main-event matchups remain unclear. KSI will feature in a quarter of the evening’s eight scheduled bouts, with younger brother Deji also set to face another YouTuber, Fousey, on the main card.