Editor’s note: This article was originally published at MMAJunkie.com.
The social media drama over the cancellation of Jake Paul’s next fight continues.
After UFC president Dana White jabbed at Nakisa Bidarian, Paul’s business partner and a former accountant with the UFC, this past Saturday after UFC 277, Bidarian posted on Instagram on Tuesday to respond.
To not bury the lead, White suggested Paul get different people around his inner circle and said just because Bidarian was an accountant with the UFC, it didn’t mean he knew how things worked. White also said he thought the cancellation of Paul’s fight with Hasim Rahman Jr. was about lackluster ticket sales and not Rahman’s inability to make the contracted weight, which is what Paul’s side claimed Saturday when the fight, and entire event planned for this week at Madison Square Garden in New York, was scrapped.
Bidarian posted a video to his private Instagram account and said the fight’s ticket sales were good – and also poked back at White at the end by saying he’s “just an accountant.”
“We’re supposed to be here Saturday for a big fight,” Bidarian said from what appeared to be a New York hotel room with the Manhattan skyline out the window. “But we had to cancel driven by fighter health and safety and liability potential. We will be back. We are working on it.
“It had zero to do with ticket sales. We already sold more tickets, more gate than Ryan Garcia just did at Staples Center (in Los Angeles). We were going to be top 10 in gates since 2005 for boxing at (Madison Square Garden). And Jake Paul was taking a big challenge. All of his fights have been at about 188-191 pounds, and all of his opponents, outside of Nate Robinson, have been plus or minus one to two pounds of him. That’s all it is.
“They can try to change the narrative. They can try to destroy what this young man has done. I’m proud of him. He’s his own boss, he’s his own promoter, and I’m just an accountant.”
According to Most Valuable Promotions, Rahman did not maintain his weight in an honest fashion and requested multiple times the bout be shifted to a heavier weight class. The promotion claimed Rahman originally agreed to a 200-pound cruiserweight bout and provided proof to the New York State Athletic Commission (NYSAC) he weighed 216 pounds July 7. But the promotion said at the time of cancellation that Rahman had only lost one pound since his July 7 weigh-in. The promotion said it offered a new 205-pound contract weight, but decided to cancel the bout after Rahman’s camp demanded 215 pounds.
Paul posted video comments about the fight falling off and said Rahman was scared to fight him.
“This is just another case of a professional boxer, just like Tommy Fury being scared to fight me,” Paul said. “It’s as clear as day that these guys have been so unprofessional to work with, looking for any excuse to suck more money out of this event, to coerce us into doing things. From the jump, I knew in the bottom of my heart that this guy didn’t want to get in there with me. It’s clear as day.
“The biggest payday of his life times 10 and he’s fumbling it,” Paul said. “For what? Because he knows he’s going to get knocked out by me. The pressure starts to set in. It’s exactly what happens with all of these guys. Same sh*t with Tommy Fury. I’m sick of it.”