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Jake Paul to fight Mike Tyson in boxing match streamed live on Netflix

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Boxers Jake Paul (L), and Mike Tyson (R).
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Mike Tyson, the scandal-plagued former heavyweight champion, will go head to head with the YouTuber-turned-fighter Jake Paul in a “boxing mega-event” that will stream live exclusively on Netflix on July 20, the entertainment giant announced Thursday.

Tyson and Paul are set to duke it out inside AT&T Stadium, an 80,000-seat capacity venue in Arlington, Texas, and the home of the National Football League’s Dallas Cowboys, the company announced in a news release.

The event marks one of Netflix’s most ambitious forays into both sports programming and live entertainment as it seeks to cement its status as the premiere at-home viewing destination in the United States, muscling aside traditional players in broadcast and cable.

The company recently reached a 10-year deal for the exclusive rights to stream World Wide Wrestling‘s weekly flagship show, “Raw,” starting in January 2025. The headline-grabbing deal was valued at more than $5 billion, according to a company filing cited by CNBC.

“I’m very much looking forward to stepping into the ring with Jake Paul at the AT&T STADIUM IN ARLINGTON, TEXAS,” Tyson said in a statement accompanying the Netflix announcement, capitalized words and all.

“He’s grown significantly as a boxer over the years, so it will be a lot of fun to see what the will and ambition of a ‘kid’ can do with the experience and aptitude of a GOAT,” Tyson added, using the acronym for “Greatest of All Time.”

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Tyson, who will be 58 when the Netflix fight streams, earned a reputation as one of the most ferocious boxers and incendiary personalities in modern professional sports.

He was the youngest heavyweight champion in history, at just 20 years old, and his prowess in the ring led him to a run of 37 consecutive victories — 33 of them by knockout, according to Netflix’s summary of his career.

Tyson’s life has also been defined by troubling behavior and legal woes. He was convicted of rape in 1992 and served three years in prison. In the ring, “Iron Mike” could be vicious, such as when he bit Evander Holyfield’s right ear during an infamous 1997 bout.

Paul, 27, got his start as an early internet influencer, posting popular videos on the defunct platform Vine and cultivating a large following on YouTube. He pivoted to boxing in 2018 and turned pro in 2020, and he now has a 9-1 record that includes six knockouts.

“It’s crazy to think that in my second pro fight, I went viral for knocking out Nate Robinson on Mike Tyson’s undercard,” Paul said in a statement. “Now, less than four years later, I’m stepping up to face Tyson myself to see if I have what it takes to beat one of boxing’s most notorious fights and biggest icons.”

The livestreamed fight is the result of a partnership between Netflix and Most Valuable Promotions, a company co-founded by Paul and Nakisa Bidarian in 2021 with “the mission to provide more creative control to fighters,” according to Netflix’s news release.

Netflix established its sport content bonafides with the documentary franchise “Untold” as well as series such as “Formula 1: Drive to Survive,” “NASCAR: Full Speed” and “Tour de France: Unchained.” The platform has hosted two live sports events to date: “The Netflix Cup” and “The Netflix Slam.”

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