Jake Paul showing early signs of CTE after brain scans ahead of Ben Askren fight
Jake Paul claims he is already showing early signs of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) in brain scans just over a year into his professional boxing career.
The YouTube sensation turned boxer is gearing up for a showdown with Ben Askren on Saturday night, taking on the former UFC star in what will be only his third professional outing.
He has previously picked up wins over fellow YouTuber AnEsonGib and ex-NBA player Nate Robinson, but this weekend Paul is set to lock horns with a former Olympian and world-champion wrestler in Askren.
The 24-year-old is fully confident of claiming victory, nonetheless, and is even targeting a bout with Conor McGregor in his next bout.
However, while speaking at a media appearance ahead of his clash with Askren on Saturday, Paul revealed he is already showing signs of CTE just 15 months into his pro journey.
“It's a dangerous sport. That's why, when people question my dedication to it, it's like, I'm showing up every single day,” he said.
“I’m putting my mental health on the line, my brain is on the line. Like you said, I've gone and gotten brain scans and [I] have early signs of CTE.
“But, I love this sport and wouldn't trade it for anything else. I'm a fighter and people will see that whether it's after Saturday night or whether it's a year from now they will see that I'm a fighter.”
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CTE is a progressive brain condition which is believed to be caused by repeated blows to the head and concussion.
Typical symptoms of CTE include short-term memory loss, changes in mood and slurred speech, and it is understood that the condition eventually leads to dementia.
Following his claim, Paul may have difficulty in licensing another bout in the future.
The online superstar is going head to head with Askren at the Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia, with the fight scheduled for eight rounds.
Askren has teased that he could try and perform an MMA move on Paul during the contest, but the latter insists he will lose his entire purse by doing so.
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