In July, we learned that former two-division boxing champ Paulie Malignaggi would be helping UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor prepare for his blockbuster August 26 boxing match with Floyd Mayweather. Unfortunately, things have soured since then, as Malignaggi has abandoned McGregor’s camp, as he feels he’s been portrayed poorly by McGregor and his team. And if you ask Jose Aldo – one of McGregor’s fiercest rivals from the MMA world– that’s no surprise.
In Aldo’s opinion, McGregor is simply bad for the sport.
Aldo then weighed in on comments – and photos – from team McGregor that suggest the Irishman was able to drop Malignaggi with a punch. Unsurprisingly, the Brazilian doesn’t buy it. While he respects McGregor’s power, he believes it’s more likely that the photo of Malignaggi on the mat was the result of a push.
“It was a push,” he said. “Yes, I believe [Malignaggi].”
“McGregor has a good punch but he cannot say that he’s the biggest puncher. MMA gloves are tiny – four ounces – so when they connect, they drop you.”
Finally, Aldo gave his prediction for McGregor’s career after this lucrative battle with Mayweather. In his opinion, the Irishman will cash his check and never fight again.
“With the money he will get from this fight, he will never fight again. Not MMA, not boxing, nothing.”
Jose Aldo and Conor McGregor fought back in late 2015. On that night, McGregor ended Aldo’s incredible reign of dominance in just 13 seconds, flatlining the featherweight great with a blistering punch.
Since then, Aldo has lost again, this time to reigning featherweight champ Max Holloway. McGregor, meanwhile has gone 2-1 since his battle with Aldo, losing to Nate Diaz, then avenging his loss to Diaz, and knocking out Eddie Alvarez to win the UFC lightweight title.
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 8/7/2017.