Outspoken New Yorker Paulie Malignaggi has sounded out Conor McGregor in a bid to call the Irishman’s bluff on a cross over to the sport.
‘The Magic Man’ is willing to be the guinea pig for McGregor in what on paper looks to be a more intriguing fight than if ‘The Notorious’ pitted his wits against former pound for pound king Floyd Mayweather Jr.
In an interview with WBN this week, Malignaggi said: “I think McGregor knows he cannot go into a boxing fight against a no-name fighter and then face Floyd Mayweather. I don’t think anybody would buy into it.
“I think he needs enough of a name to push it to a marquee-level fight, but I just don’t think he can beat me.
“He’s got ability but it’s something I question. I questioned it from the start and I already told people that he’s not a guy that can beat me. I really don’t think he can – there’s no way.”
If McGregor is completely serious about his ambitions in the squared circle, a warm-up or two will one hundred percent be needed to gauge what level the current UFC lightweight ruler is at – from a boxing standpoint.
Rushing into a Mayweather would be a massively one-sided affair in favour of the ‘Money’ man and only serve to pull the wool over the fans’ eyes in a money-making scheme.
McGregor always has that punchers chance, but then again, so did Canelo Alvarez, Marcos Maidana, Ricky Hatton and Miguel Cotto, all of whom were resoundingly taken care of by Mayweather – the master.
That’s why putting McGregor in with someone like Malignaggi works instantly and also be a clash of considerable personalities that wouldn’t need any selling to the public.
A Malignaggi v McGregor press conference would by itself be must-see viewing, and with the boxer versus puncher/MMA angle, all parties could make a tidy sum whilst answering the question everybody wants to know.
Can Conor McGregor box?