It’s officially been a week since UFC 229, where Conor McGregor made his long anticipated return to the UFC/MMA after a two year absence from the sport in which he competed for a chance to win the UFC lightweight championship for a second time, but was defeated in the fourth round via submission by current champion Khabib Nurmagomedov.
Since the loss, the future for the Irish superstar is sort of at a crossroads.
Though there are still plenty of options out there for him in both MMA and boxing, should he still choose to fight to in either, it is hard to predict at this point just what, if any of those options in terms of his next bout.
One of those endless options for him, could be a potential boxing match with former multi-time world champion Paulie Malignaggi.
If you will recall, Malignaggi was originally appointed to be a sparring partner for McGregor leading up to the massive Mayweather fight last year, but the relationship between the two plummeted and developed into a feud.
Now that McGregor and Malignaggi’s relationship is indeed no more, fight fans have recently voiced their interest in seeing the two settle the score inside the ring, an opportunity which of course Paulie Malignaggi would gladly accept.
When appearing on the Joe Rogan Experience podcast not long after UFC 229, McGregor’s head coach John Kavanaugh stated that a boxing match between Conor McGregor and Paulie Malignaggi is a definite possibility for his fighter’s next bout, as is also a rematch with Floyd Mayweather.
“It is absolutely not out of the realm of possibilities,” Kavanagh said (transcript via MMA Fighting). “There are all sorts of crazy rumors going around the management team and the fight team about what might happen next. It could be boxing, it could be him [Malignaggi], it could be Floyd. All sorts of names are being thrown about.”
Kavanaugh then continued by discussing the infamous training session between McGregor and Malignaggi which McGregor allegedly claimed to have dominated due despite his lack of boxing experience, and also stated that the entire sparring footage will be released soon in a Netflix documentary in what Kavanaugh says should clear the air of what actually happened with the two were in the ring together.
“I think there is something being released on Netflix soon based around that fight and it’ll have all the rounds,” Kavanagh said. “We have the 12 rounds. As far as I’m aware, I just did an interview for it recently. I think it’s a three-part documentary that’s going to be on Netflix soon. So people will get to make up their own minds about it.”
“It turned out to be a great contest,” Kavanagh added, discussing McGregor and Malignaggi’s sparring session. “And I’ll say contest because it wasn’t a spar, they were talking the whole time. They were talking the whole time, Paulie was talking to me, he was talking to the cameraman, he was almost better than Conor at it, it was great to watch. Everybody had a great night, and I think they both actually bizarrely enjoyed it. It’s like Conor and Nate [Diaz]. It’s Batman and The Joker, they both need each other. They hate each other, but they love each other.”
Do you think a boxing match between Conor McGregor and Paulie Malignaggi will ever take place?