The hype train that is Mayweather vs. McGregor continues to stretch out beyond the boxing ring.
UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor will make his professional boxing debut in just two weeks' time (Sat. August 26, 2017) from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada on Showtime pay-per-view (PPV) as he challenges undefeated 49-0 legend Floyd Mayweather Jr. The bout will be contested at 154 pounds and is scheduled for 12 rounds with 8 ounce gloves. McGregor has taken preparations for this fight extremely seriously, bringing in former two weight boxing champ Paulie Malignaggi as a sparring partner.
Things between McGregor and Malignaggi got real sour real fast, however, as pictures and footage of the pair's sparring sessions, in which McGregor looked as though he was dominating the ex-champ, surfaced online which prompted Malignaggi to leave the camp.
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McGregor's training partner and UFC featherweight, Artem Lobov, recently spoke to MMA Fighting to discuss the fallout between Team McGregor and Malignaggi, claiming McGregor dominated him in sparring and calling the boxer out for a fight (quotes via MMA Fighting):
“Let’s be honest, it’s very simple, there were three sparring partners — me, Tiernan (Bradley) and Dashon (Johnson),” Lobov said.
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“I had an interview with Ariel Helwani where I called Paulie a diva. Tiernan had another interview where he gave him a little bit of stick too. Guess what? Paulie decides to talk bad about me and Tiernan and say nothing about Dashon.
“Why? Dashon is the only that didn’t give interviews about him or say anything about the incident. It’s clearly emotional from him. He’s trying to get back at me and Tiernan, but it’s no big deal to me. If he wants to fight, I’m down to fight. I’ll box the ears off him, no problem.”
“The reason why I called him a diva, and a lot of people have given me criticism over that, the reason I said that is because I’m not telling lies. I always stick to the facts,” Lobov said. "Yes, it might have sounded harsh and he probably got a bit of stick for it, but you can’t deny that I’m telling the truth.
“He was given a wage that he was happy with. He was given a car, he was put in a house and he was provided food, three meals a day actually, from a very nice restaurant. What else can you ask for? He was saying that the conditions were bad. Dashon and Tiernan were with us in Ireland and they were so happy with the setup that they wanted to come to Vegas.
“I don’t know what he is on about, so for me, he’s just being a diva. He’s an emotional mess, that’s what he is. Conor dominated him in every single round. It was 12-0, and it was easy to score. Paulie doesn’t want to admit that now, because it’s not cool yet, Conor is seen as the amateur in the boxing world. I think when Conor beats Mayweather, suddenly Paulie will come out and he will admit that he was spanked because it will be seen as normal.
“Now, he just can’t accept that this newcomer absolutely destroyed him in the ring when he was a two-time world champion.”
What are your thoughts on Lobov calling out Malignaggi? Have YOUR say in the comments section below!
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