Conor McGregor speaks out on Paulie Malignaggi sparring fallout: 'He took a lot of head trauma'

LAS VEGAS Much has been made in recent weeks of the fallout between Conor McGregor and Paulie Malignaggi after the retired two-time boxing champion abruptly left McGregor’s training camp following two sparring sessions.Since his departure, Malignaggi has been critical that’s putting it mildly of the way he’s been portrayed by McGregor on social media. Malignaggi, who has claimed he got the better of McGregor, certainly won’t appreciate the 22-second footage UFC President Dana White shared late Friday night of McGregor landing some hard, clean shots on Malignaggi.
Earlier in the day, McGregor finally addressed the drama for the first time and offered his side of the story.
“He was looking for an exit,” McGregor said during his media workout in Las Vegas. “The spars were not good for him. He took a lot of head trauma. Straight after it we were worried. The sparring partners were actually telling us when he was dropped back at the home that he was stumbling out of the car after the 12-rounder.
“He was flattened against the ropes; multiple times the ropes kept him on his feet. We were worried about him. We thought the worst was about to happen. He was certainly badly concussed. And then he just got out of there and went running.”
McGregor (21-3 MMA, 9-1 UFC) and Floyd Mayweather (49-0 boxing) face off on Aug. 26 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas in a pay-per-view event
expected to be the most lucrative prize fight of all time. McGregor invited Malignaggi to camp to gain experience sparring a high-level boxer ahead of the showdown.
Malignaggi said he accepted the offer with the intention of simply helping McGregor but figured out early on that McGregor’s motivation was to make himself look good at Malignaggi’s expense.Problems arose between when the UFC lightweight champion posted a photo of himself showboating with his hands behind his back during their first eight-round sparring session. Things escalated after a second photo of McGregor looking down at Malignaggi on the canvas was posted to McGregor’s social media. Malignaggi especially took umbrage with the second photo; he said that moment was the result of a pushdown, which the aforementioned video footage seems to support.
McGregor said he posted only the first photo intentionally, claiming the second photo of the grounded Malignaggi “got leaked.” It was later removed.
Despite whatever miscommunication there might have been between the two men, McGregor maintains that Malignaggi simply couldn’t hang with him in the ring and left because of a hit to his ego.
“He showed (up), he tried his best, it didn’t go his way,” McGregor said. “He got his ass whooped, he got his pride dented, and then he wanted a way out. What better way for a guy like him to exit under a load of questions. …
“He was flattened. What can I say? He got his ass whooped. But I like the guy. He’s kind of like a lovable mouthpiece.”
Malignaggi has said he wouldn’t release any tactical or strategic information following his experience with McGregor.
Mayweather on Thursday called Malignaggi a friend. With that in mind, McGregor was asked if he was worried about Malignaggi spilling anything to Mayweather.
“Let him speak (to Mayweather). I’m sure he has,” McGregor said. “You can’t prepare for me. … There’s nobody in the game that moves like me and that strikes like me and has the confidence like me. So let them talk.”For more on “The Money Fight: Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor,” check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.














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