Former two-weight world champion Carl Frampton has told William Hill’s Stripped Podcast that he “doesn’t enjoy” YouTube and influencer boxing matches, suggesting some of the social media stars need to “know their lane”.
Speaking to William Hill’s Stripped Podcast, a series in which ex-footballers and celebrities are invited to take a trip down memory lane by revisiting their favourite shirts, Frampton said: “I don’t enjoy watching the YouTube fights. I hated it at the start. I understand what it is they’re doing, but the thing that annoyed me the most is when these YouTube guys start talking about how they want to fight Canelo [Alvarez], for example. Know your limit, fight fellow YouTubers, but know your lane!
“But it does generate a lot of money and it’s bringing a new audience to boxing. At the end of the day boxing is a business – it’s one of the dirtiest businesses in the world. Nobody’s your friend, it’s just a conveyor belt. I was really naive – I didn’t realise it was a business at the start and I didn’t understand the ins and outs of it. It took me a bit longer to become wiser but once I did, I was able to see it for what it really is.”
When asked about a potential fight between YouTuber Jake Paul and Tommy Fury, Frampton said: “I’ve said before that I think Tommy Fury would lose to Jake Paul, and John [Fury] wasn’t happy when I said that. Tommy is a similar level to Jake Paul. Just because Tyson Fury can really fight, it doesn’t mean Tommy is going to be a good fighter. He’s a novice professional – he’s getting better, but I still think Jake Paul would beat him.”
Frampton also weighed in his opinion about Tommy Fury’s half-brother Tyson, who stopped Derek Chisora in the 10th round of their bout at Wembley on Saturday night.
He said: “I’d like to see [Tyson] Fury against Oleksandr Usyk, and I think Fury would win. Usyk is a very good fighter, but I think the size will be the difference in that fight. Fury’s not as agile these days, he’s way more aggressive now than he was back then. He used to get up on his toes and move around and out-box people, but now he’s more ‘seek and destroy’.”
Boxing helped bridge social divisions growing up
Speaking about his childhood, having been raised in a Protestant family in west Belfast, Frampton explained how boxing helped connect people from opposing backgrounds in the city.
“Growing up with all the conflict around Celtic and Rangers in Belfast, boxing was a good way for me to get away from it,” he said. “It helped me grow up. I came from a place called Tiger’s Bay which is a Loyalist stronghold. As a kid you’re always influenced by the older people, but a lot of the time they were just people who hated everyone from the other side of the road.
“There was a road which divided my house from the New Lodge, which is a Republican stronghold. You assume that you hate these people across the road because they’re Republicans, but it’s not always the case. Boxing was a sport that brought both sides together and that’s how I got my integration. I would be training in the New Lodge in west Belfast with Catholics who, if it hadn’t have been for boxing, I’d have never have been mixing with.
“I lived in a rough area but there’s rough areas all over the UK. You just wouldn’t talk to people on the other side of the street – only for boxing. It if wasn’t for boxing I’d have probably hated them. I’m actually in a mixed marriage because my wife is Catholic – my kids certainly have a different life to what I had, they don’t really even know what I grew up in, and I quite like that.
Interview courtesy of William Hill