There has been a lot of buzz on the sparring that took place between UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor and former world champion boxer Paulie Malignaggi, even though it has only been one sparring session.
The two got into the ring as part of McGregor’s camp for his August 26 mega-million dollar boxing match against undefeated great Floyd Mayweather.
“In a championship camp, the sparring is intense, so I didn’t expect to go in there and it be a picnic,” Malignaggi said to ESPN of his time spent sparring with McGregor. “Conor is a competitor, I’m a competitor. We went in there and there was a lot of trash talking right away. There was a lot of fighting right away.”
It was an interesting move by McGregor and his team as Paulie once called Conor out to fight and the two have thrown their shots at each other in the past. However, this may have just been McGregor’s chance to really have a knock at the retired boxing champion.
Irish amateur boxing champion Tiernan Bradley has been a part of McGregor’s boxing camp and wrote a piece for The Irish News and gave some inside information to the sparring that took place between “The Notorious” and Malignaggi.
“You can see he’s (Malignaggi) still a class operator, and it was an interesting spar to watch – more a full on fight actually. Conor told us all when Paulie came into camp ‘this is not a spar, I want to fight him. I’m ready for a war’.
“Paulie was talking to him in between rounds, trying to give him advice, but then he was getting slapped in the face.
“I saw what he said about Conor’s power and he’s playing a bit of a dangerous game because he still has more spars to go with Conor, and Conor will be out there to knock him out. He’ll want to show him he has ‘oh my God’ power.”
Do you think Paulie Malignaggi will have different things to say after their next sparring session? Let’s discuss this in the comment section.
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 8/2/2017.