Woodley takes on YouTube sensation-turned-boxer Jake Paul on Sunday at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse in Cleveland in what on paper is projected to be Paul’s toughest test to date.
But oddsmakers think otherwise. Former UFC welterweight champion Woodley is entering as the betting underdog. While Paul technically has the experience advantage with three boxing bouts under his belt, Lawal says Woodley has been putting the work in with the right people.
“People have to remember: Boxing is not MMA,” Lawal told MMA Junkie Radio. “As a competitor, Tyron Woodley can compete. He can punch. He’s athletic. It’s a different sport, though. I haven’t seen him box. I’ve seen him box and move around, but I’ve never seen him box. But I know he has some skills, though. I know he’s no dummy. I know he was in Vegas training with (Gerald Tucker) and Floyd (Mayweather). I know he was down in Miami with Pedro Diaz, so I’m pretty sure he picked up some skills.”
Lawal acknowledged Paul has shown some skill, but thinks if Woodley can bring the fight to him, he’ll find success.
“It’ll depend if Woodley can establish a jab, because Jake Paul is pretty long and rangy,” Lawal said. “He can punch. He has some hand speed. But if Woodley can get on the inside, let his hands go, keep pressure on him, keep the jab in his face, just keep him tied up, I think Woodley can get the job done.”