Paulie Malagnaggi On Artem Lobov: I’m Going To Beat Him To A Pulp
Ever since Paulie Malignaggi agreed to spar with Conor McGregor back in 2017, when the Irish man was preparing for his fight with Floyd Mayweather, there has been bad blood between the two. This was started when McGregor’s team released footage of the sparring sessions, showing the former UFC two division champion getting the upper hand. This did not sit well with Malignaggi.
The bad blood has grown and now runs between Malignaggi and Team McGregor. And this weekend, the bad blood will meet head on inside a bare knuckle boxing ring, as Malignaggi will face McGregor’s close friend and teammate Artem Lobov, at BKFC 6.
Fans are split with their predictions for the fight. The majority of MMA fans think that Malignaggi’s hands are too brittle for bare knuckle fighting and Lobov will be too tough of an opponent, when it comes to throwing down without boxing gloves on.
However, most boxing fans believe that Malignaggi will out class the Irish Russian, with his superior boxing skills. There are elements of truth on both sides of the argument but I can’t help but think that the American’s boxing skills will be the difference. But as well as the bad blood, the uncertainty of the outcome of this fight is a huge selling point.
Although there’s no uncertainty in Malignaggi’s mind. The former boxing world champion fully expects to destroy Lobov. And he’s happy that the ‘f***ing stupid’ MMA fans made this fight possible. As he told MMA Fighting.
“Thank god that this fan base in MMA is so f***ing stupid that they actually have made this possible. A fight this easy is possible in a main event situation. That’s how I look at it. I look at it in a thankful way. From that perspective I say yeah, I can’t believe I’m here. I’ve been in the ring with top fighters, main events inside stadiums and the biggest arenas in the world. I’ve been announced as a world champion. Believe me, it all goes through my mind. And now, I’m fighting this guy, who I don’t think has ever fought a guy who’s been a world champion, let alone fight for a title. So I catch myself and say I can only be thankful. There’s no way realistically possible to have a fight this easy against a bum of this level unless there is a fan base this stupid.”
Malignaggi acknowledges that Artem is tough but that’s as far as the compliments go, when it comes to the former UFC fighter’s boxing.
“Artem’s boxing? What boxing? His fighting or whatever he does? I don’t really know. I struggle to find something positive about it. He’s a guy who’s tough, but then again, I know club fighters who fight in front of 500 people who are tough, too. I can’t say there’s anything that worries me past that. The thing is, I don’t have to make it up. Literally, everything he says to pump himself up, he has to make it up. Me? I’m legitimately telling you the truth when I tell you the guy can’t fight. The guy has no respectable boxing ability, and I have a hard time figuring how this fight’s going to be tough. I can legitimately say that, and if you watch his boxing, you know I’m telling the truth.
“It’s going to be very bloody. I’m going to beat him to a pulp.”
In the fight game, my favourite scenario is when there is a huge amount of bad blood going into the fight but then after a war inside the cage or ring, it is followed by a massive amount of respect between the two fighters. I don’t think we’ll see that this weekend though. According to Malignaggi, that will only happen if he receives ‘an apology and and admittance of lies’, from Team McGregor. But somehow I think that no matter how the fight goes, he’s going to be waiting a long time for this.
“I expect an apology and an admittance of the lies. If I get that, there can be respect, no problem. We’re both men, and we should be up front as men. I’ve been nothing but up front. I think if there was mutual respect, he would admit all they did was lie and were hyping things. Then we could have respect and be cool about it. But if he keeps lying about it, I might beat his ass again after I’m done.”
BKFC 6 goes down this Saturday night at the Florida State Fairgrounds, in Tampa, Florida.