"Let’s run it back in Ireland" - Jake Paul backs Katie Taylor's Croke Park dream
"She had Katie Taylor hurt a couple of times."
Jake Paul was not the only person at Madison Square Garden that thought Katie Taylor was on a fast-track to defeat mid-way through her lightweight world title fight against Amanda Serrano.
Taylor survived one hell of a barrage from Serrano in the fourth and fifth rounds, then dug deep to get through the sixth and take control of the bout in the final four rounds.
The final round saw both fighters fling several kitchen sinks, with Taylor drawing blood from Serrano and finishing with a flourish. The Madison Square Garden crowd rose as one at the final bell to salute Serrano and Taylor.
Look at this finish! Legendary stuff pic.twitter.com/6oDNrTvv7g
— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) May 1, 2022
Eddie Hearn on Katie Taylor vs. Amanda Serrano rematch
There was drama, too, as the scores were read out, with Katie Taylor edging it in a split decision - 94-96, 97-93, 96-93.
Following the fight, promoter Jake Paul, who accompanied Serrano during her ring walk, was more than open to a rematch, even if the Puerto Rican had to fetch her travel bag and passport to head over to Ireland.
Fellow promoter Eddie Hearn told DAZN he felt it was a "close fight" and admitted he feared for Taylor when Serrano unloaded on her in the fourth and fifth rounds. "I thought Katie just edged the fight... two women changed the game, tonight, but also provided a fight for the ages.
"I know this man [Jake Paul] will want to run it back. I see a big rematch, later in the year, but, for now, Katie Taylor a legend of the sport, and Amanda Serrano too. This is a massive night for the sport."
"It was a draw, at best," Paul began.
"We thought we won. We thought Amanda won. Amanda performed amazing. The fight of a life-time. It was Arturo Gatti versus Micky Ward. It was incredible. Both women fought their hearts out.
"The crowd is booing, but everyone's a winner here. I'd be mad if I was them, too. But, hey, kudos to Katie Taylor and what she has done for women's boxing. You've got to give credit where credit is due.
"Let's run it back, like Eddie said. September, October, this fight. This second fight just got a whole lot bigger."
AND STILL!!!!! 🙌
After those brutal 4th and 5th rounds, @KatieTaylor was looking done. How she was able to dig deep and pull that victory out is simply incredible 👑🇮🇪 pic.twitter.com/9yP2pasS4A
— SportsJOE (@SportsJOEdotie) May 1, 2022
Up next, Croke Park?
Both Taylor and Serrano were open to rematch talk, and we had Hearn and Paul eagerly agreeing. This first bout will go down in the books as an all-timer, so any run-back would be even bigger again.
EDDIE HEARN: "Katie Taylor is one of the greatest things to ever come out of Ireland. If we don't go back to Ireland for a fight, before her career is done, it would be a big shame. I think we should have this rematch in Ireland. Let Katie Taylor fight for the first time back at Croke Park."
JAKE PAUL: "100% [Amanda will go to Ireland]. She's a true champion. She'll go anywhere, whenever. The Irish fans are mad. We've got some unsettled business. Like I said, that was a draw, at best. I thought Amanda Serrano took it. She had Katie Taylor hurt a couple of times, on the ropes. But it is what it is. Katie is obviously a true champion and if it was a close fight, the judges are obviously going to give it to her. But let's run it back in Ireland!"
Paul was clearly still smarting from Serrano's close defeat but, as he said, everyone is a winner after a fight, and night, like that.