The fight of the century may be this weekend but the feud with the most heat just might be between former sparring partners.
The Conor McGregor and Paulie Malignaggi rivalry hasn’t died down since Malignaggi left the UFC lightweight champion’s camp after images were released that showed the retired boxer in an unfavorable light when sparring with the UFC champion who will make his professional boxing debut on Aug. 26 against Floyd Mayweather in Las Vegas.
As McGregor spoke to the media outside the T-Mobile Arena on Tuesday, Malignaggi ended up exchanging words with McGregor’s manager, Audie Attar. Attar can be captured telling Malignaggi that he was “talking out of his contract,” which alludes to the NDA agreement where sparring was not to be discussed in the media. However, Malignaggi felt that he was well within his rights to address those closed door sessions once photos leaked of what appeared to be McGregor knocking down the former boxing champion.
McGregor soon entered the fray and appeared to try to calm the situation but his advice to Malignaggi to “get over it” rubbed the “Magic Man” the wrong way. Words were exchanged and Malignaggi can be heard asking Conor if he remembered to “bring his balls” to this weekend’s megafight.
Malignaggi spoke to MMA Fighting and stated that he was “forced to defend himself” once the images leaked to the media. “If the pictures were never posted, I’d have no reason to talk,” Malignaggi said. As for the comments about bringing his balls, Malignaggi stated that it was a reminder of how he believes McGregor folds when things don’t go his way.
“I asked him if he remembered to bring them because he forgot them against Nate Diaz. You tend to forget them when [expletive] gets tough.”
This is clearly far from over.