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Morning Report: Paulie Malignaggi hints interest in boxing Conor McGregor after Floyd Mayweather

Boxing at The O2 Photo by Leigh Dawney/Getty Images

Last week, the biggest news in the combat sports world was Paulie Malignaggi leaving Conor McGregor’s training camp amid a dispute about leaked training pictures. Malignaggi was brought into the McGregor camp as a sparring partner for the UFC lightweight champion ahead of his Aug. 26th boxing match against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. but was upset by the pictures which appeared to show McGregor getting the better of the former world champion. Malignaggi then created a media frenzy by trashing McGregor in a multitude of outlets, including calling McGregor a “d**khead” on The MMA Hour on Monday. Seemingly out of nowhere, a respectful relationship had turned acrimonious.

Now, it appears the penny may have finally dropped.

Posting over several hours on his Twitter account yesterday, Malignaggi hinted heavily he might challenge McGregor after the Mayweather fight is done and that McGregor would be wise to stick to boxing instead of returning to MMA.

Though Malignaggi initially denies any intention of pursuing a fight with McGregor, his Tweets all come with some form of the caveat of “wait until after the Mayweather fight.” He also mentions multiple times that staying in boxing is a more lucrative path forward for McGregor rather than returning to MMA, even addressing the potential McGregor- Khabib Nurmagomedov fight with much skepticism.

During his Tweetstorm, Malignaggi was also sure to clarify previous statements he made about being McGregor not having “‘Oh my God’ power,” saying that McGregor has good power in his punches.

The general consensus is that the Mayweather fight will be the largest single payday of McGregor’s career and any return to MMA would be a demonstrable drop off in earnings. That’s partly why many people are suggesting McGregor will retire after boxing Floyd. But another boxing match, like one with the built in drama and promotion he would have with Malignaggi, could also prove extremely lucrative for McGregor and could tempt him to continue competing inside the squared circle.

As for Malginaggi, he retired from boxing earlier this year after being knocked out by Sam Eggington in March, but should McGregor lose to Mayweather, facing an opponent coming off a knockout loss would play nicely into the “McGregor has the power to drop anybody” narrative. And like Mayweather, Malignaggi suggested his retirement might not be so permanent where Conor McGregor is concerned.

Conor McGregor boxes Floyd Mayweather, Jr. on Aug. 26 in Las Vegas, Nev.


MUST-READ STORIES

217. Georges St-Pierre signs bout agreement for UFC 217 fight against Michael Bisping.

8 oz. Nevada commission to vote on lighter glove usage for MayMac fight.

Memory. Paulie Malignaggi recalls the moment he found out about leaked sparring pictures.

Song. Irish Singer Mick Konstantin made a song for Conor McGregor.

Boxing. Andre Berto details challenges ahead of McGregor when boxing Mayweather.


VIDEO STEW

That Conor song.

Make Snoopcast a thing for MayMac.

Stitch got solid perspective from both sports.

This includes, legitimately, the single worst minute of MMA analysis I’ve heard in years. “Nate outweighed him by 40 pounds and Sumo’d him” is inconceivably stupid. And these guys are ON THE NETWORK the UFC has shows on.

And the other big network coverage.

Big time KO to to end this one.


LISTEN UP

Heavy Hands. Breaking down Sergio Pettisarrival as an elite flyweight.

The MMA Circus. UFC Fight Night Mexico recap and Snoopcast discussion.


SOCIAL MEDIA BOUILLABAISSE

GSP making it certified official.

Thug Rose got a feature in Women’s Health.

Awfully cool under all that shade.

Frank knows.

Will Brooks putting a 10-8 round on Lentz here.

Everyone wants in on UFC 217.

Some more of this.

Kevin Lee saying what everyone is thinking at this point.

Maybe get a better pic?


FIGHT ANNOUNCEMENTS

Livia Renata Souza (10-1) vs. Janaisa Morandin (9-0); Invicta 25, Aug. 31.

Jan Blachowicz (19-7) vs. Devin Clark (8-1); UFC Fight Night: Poland, Oct. 21.

James Gallagher (7-0) vs. Jeremiah Labiano (11-5); Bellator 186, Nov. 10.


TODAY IN MMA HISTORY

2003: Wanderlei Silva faced Kazushi Sakuraba for the third time, knocking him out in the opening round of the 2003 Pride Middleweight Grand Prix at Pride Total Elimination 2003. Also at that event, Mirko Cro Cop KOed Igor Vovchanchyn with a head kick.

Also that evening, Joachim Hansen upset Takanori Gomi to win the Shooto lightweight title at Shooto.


FINAL THOUGHTS

16 days.

Take it easy and see y’all tomorrow.


If you find something you'd like to see in the Morning Report, just hit me up on Twitter @JedKMeshew and let me know about it. Also follow MMAFighting on Instagram, add us on Snapchat at MMA-Fighting, and like us on Facebook.

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