Logan Paul began his rise to internet stardom back in 2013, on the now-defunct video-sharing application Vine. Following Vine's extinction, Paul migrated to YouTube, where his daily vlogs channel would become one of the biggest in the world, with over 20 million subscribers.
Originally from Ohio, Paul moved to Los Angeles in 2014 to pursue a career as a full-time social media entertainer. From there, his ascension happened fast. By 2016 Paul was being featured on television series, being sponsored by the world's most famous brands, writing and producing for his channel and other media products, and starting a music career.
The beginning of 2018 would be the most difficult time in Paul's professional life. After a trip to Japan, where Paul visited Aokigahara, the infamous 'suicide forest,' he posted a video in which he filmed a dead man's body while joking and describing his thoughts about the forest. His act was condemned by several politicians, celebrities, and fellow YouTubers. Petitions asking YouTube to delete Paul's channel appeared everywhere, the most popular one received almost a million signatures.
"It's not about YOU, Logan Paul. A man who had family and friends chose to end his life, and you chose to share his death to your millions of followers without thinking about how his family/friends felt? It's disgusting and shouldn't be tolerated," the petition's description read.
Following the Japan incident, Paul's name became associated with controversy. YouTube decided to take action after, suspending all advertising from Paul's channel due to his irresponsible behavior, including animal abuse and his participation in the 'tide pod challenge,' which consisted of participants ingesting laundry detergent pods.
Not long after, Logan Paul's career would take an unusual path, when he would go from making daily vlogs to boxing. It all started with a challenge from KSI, a British YouTuber who had recently completed his first white-collar boxing match. Paul accepted the challenge.
In the preliminary card of their fight, Logan Paul's younger brother, Jake Paul - who is also an internet celebrity and boxer wannabe - made his debut as well. Logan Paul vs. KSI ended with a majority draw. But the two agreed on a professional rematch. The professional bout happened last year, and Paul lost via split decision. His brother Jake, however, has since enjoyed a more successful run, with two wins in his two professional bouts.
To the shock of the fighting world, it was recently announced that Floyd Mayweather, one of the best boxers ever, will be Logan Paul's next adversary. The match will happen on February 20, 2021.
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Is Logan Paul quitting being a YouTuber?
Logan Paul last uploaded a video to his YouTube channel more than two months ago. Although he has been active with his podcast, many of his followers speculate whether the absence means it is the end of his YouTuber adventure.
Talking on the channel of his friend Mike Majlak, Paul ensured his fans he will be coming back to YouTube. But as one can imagine, training to fight someone like Floyd Mayweather is consuming most of his time.
"I'll be back. Before the end of the year, for sure. I got a song coming out about 2020. If you thought Jake Paul's music was good, wait until you see this puppy. But yeah, 2020, man. Just know and trust that the future is bright," Logan Paul said.
How does it make sense for Logan Paul to fight Floyd Mayweather?
It sounds a bit bizarre to hear the name of a boxing legend and that of a YouTuber in the same sentence. But things wouldn't just randomly get to this point. There is a lot of reasoning behind a fight like this, and like almost everything in this business, the main reason is money.
Just to put things in perspective: Floyd Mayweather is the biggest moneymaker in the history of combat sports. 'Money,' as he is also known, is reported to have netted over one billion dollars in prize money alone during his professional boxing career. A big chunk of this amount came in 2017 when Mayweather returned from retirement to fight UFC star Conor McGregor, who is probably the second-best moneymaker in combat sports. The fight saw 'Money' reportedly earn up to 280 million dollars by himself, while McGregor is said to have pocketed 130 million.
On the other hand, Logan Paul is believed to have a net worth of 'only' 19 million dollars. But the YouTube star has something else to put on the table. Paul has a faithful audience added to the ability to make them follow whatever he is doing next. For his first boxing bout against another YouTuber named KSI, Paul managed to attract 1.3 million pay per view buys. That is the 21st best-selling PPV fight in combat sports history and by far the best-selling non-professional event.
When they are put together, Mayweather appeals to boxing afficionados while Logan Paul brings in social media followers - a new audience that boxing is begging for. Plus, the many other people who will be just curious to see how this bizarre duel will unfold. An error-free recipe for another successful PPV event.
Matchroom Boxing, the world's leading boxing promoter, was behind Logan Paul's bout. CEO Barry Hearn was fast to realize the potential of bringing social media celebrities to the ring. The YouTuber's match was a massive success in the UK and the United States, and it went on to become DAZN's most-viewed PPV fight ever.
"It was a big subscription driver as well," said Hearn. "It wasn't just those two key territories; it was all those other little territories. When we look at the breakdown on Fite TV, Australia, Saudi Arabia, Eastern Europe, Africa – it was everywhere. You don't realize the audience these guys have. They brought our sport to reach new ground and reach new territories, new demographics, and new markets."
Can Logan Paul shock the world and beat Floyd Mayweather?
Floyd Mayweather has had 50 fights during his career. He won all of them. Logan Paul fought once - against another YouTuber - and lost. If Paul can do anything more than being knocked out in the first round, it will be impressive. Mayweather odds with bookmakers are extraordinarily short.
But you would be wrong to believe that Logan Paul thinks in the same way as the rest of the world does. He thinks it wouldn't be impossible for him to beat Mayweather. And he wants to go for the knockout.
"No one could say it's impossible. You can bet that I'm going for the knockout," said Paul. "As a person who wants to leave a legacy forever, I am going for the win."