No, Paulie Malignaggi hasn’t quite given up ragging on former target, turned sparring partner, turned bitter enemy Conor McGregor just yet.
Malignaggi was a key character in the most intriguing subplot of the strange and enthralling McGregor – Floyd Mayweather Jr. saga last year. Before McGregor vs. Mayweather actually signed to meet in a boxing ring, when the mooted bout still seemed like mere fantasy to most, the trash-talking Malignaggi was one of the many boxers to campaign for a shot at the Irish UFC star, suggesting that he should prove his fistic talents against a lower-level opponent before talking seriously about facing an all-time great like Floyd.
Surprisingly, after the fight was signed, Malignaggi was brought in as a sparring partner by McGregor, with ‘The Notorious’ one claiming that he wanted to make the Italian-American boxer answer for his previous slights. The pair engaged in two reportedly heated sparring sessions before Malignaggi made an acrimonious departure from the camp. The former two-weight world titlist subsequently claimed that McGregor’s team had deliberately deceived the public by releasing misleading snaps and clips from the sparring sessions to make their man look good while adding that he had been put up in a “crackhouse” during his time in the camp.
He would become McGregor’s most outspoken, vociferous critic in the final weeks leading up to the Mayweather fight.
After McGregor lost to Mayweather via tenth-round TKO in Las Vegas on August 26th, Malignaggi went back to campaigning for a fight with the UFC lightweight champion – in the ring again, rather than the cage. He was relentlessly derogatory toward McGregor on social media for months, but McGregor never really seemed to take the bait.
Perhaps as a result of McGregor’s seeming apathy, Malignaggi has been relatively quiet on the subject as of late. But when he was asked during a recent FightHype interview for his opinion on McGregor’s uncertain future and whether the SBG Ireland representative will ever fight again, Malignaggi once again spewed vitriol on a 2017 level.
“Conor is going to fight off the desire to ever fight again,” said the supposedly retired 37-year-old. “That’s what Conor’s got to fight off.”
“Conor wants to fight, he’s an egomaniac. But Conor is still a bitch at heart. When he looks at it, he’s going to see Khabib [Nurmagomedov] and Tony Ferguson, ‘Shit, that’s an ass whooping, that’s an ass whooping.’ Anybody in boxing is an ass whooping. ‘Any door I open I’m getting my ass whooped.'”
“But his ego [means] he wants to be in the middle of everything,” added Malignaggi. “So, he gives a little bit at a time. What does he give? First, [he says] he is going to give you the video of Paulie Malignaggi sparring after the fight. Then he doesn’t do it. So, that get’s people talking. Then Tony Ferguson fights, he’s going to fuck Tony Ferguson up. Then he doesn’t do it. Then Khabib fights, then he doesn’t [fight him]. Then he calls Mayweather out again, [Manny] Pacquiao and [Oscar] De La Hoya call him out, and he’s not doing it.”
“But he keeps giving you a little bit because he can’t help himself, he just wants to be the centre of attention, the poor kid. God bless him. He’s such a little baby, god bless him. He wants to be the centre of attention so bad but he can’t do it without getting his asked kicked now. It’s funny. Now, he’s like, ‘Fuck, how am I going to be the centre of attention and not get the shit beat out of me?’ He’s got no way. Now he’s scratching his head, trying to give out a couple of quotes, the groupies are falling off little by little.”
“You can post all the shit you want, just like he’s constantly done his whole career, but at the end of the day you’ve got to get in there and do it,” said Malignaggi. “And everybody waiting for you is gonna beat the living shit out of you, including me if you box. Including me, Pacquiao, Oscar can come out of retirement and beat the shit out of you, Khabib is going to beat the shit out of you, Ferguson is going to beat the shit out of you.”
“Just fight off (the desire to come back), just fight it off,” Malignaggi added. “Just fight it off, you pussy. You’re not even going out on top because you got your ass whooped the last fight, and you got your ass whooped two fights ago in the UFC as well.”
“You’re not even going out on top, but give the perception that you’re going out on top. Because enough people perceive that you’re going out on top, so just leave with that perception. Do yourself a favor.”