Outrage as Paulie Malignaggi is dropped by Showtime for ‘race comments’

Phil Jay 31/07/2020
Paulie Malignaggi

📸 Showtime

Part of the boxing world has reacted with outrage as Paulie Malignaggi was axed by Showtime Boxing for comments made in a video a few months back.

‘The Magic Man’, loved for a lack of fear in giving his honest opinion, was ‘removed’ permanently from the network, according to Ring Magazine.

It’s been stated that Malignaggi’s comments on Devin Haney saying ‘he’d never lose to a white boy’ – given to IFL TV earlier this year, have cost Malignaggi his job.

This is what the Italian-American said: “He probably wasn’t talking about Lomachenko. I assume he was talking about Luke Campbell, who I think the more viable opponent that Haney would be fighting.

“When you’re in your early twenties, you probably don’t express that very well.

“It’s not something that great to make (something) racial in 2020. Especially with so many racial tensions in the world.

“Boxing has had its course in history with certain demographics dominating more than others, right?

“Maybe like 100 years ago, Irish fighters were better. And then the Jews and the Italians came in.

“I think the African-American fighter became most dominant in the sport in the 70s, 80s. And even 90s.

“It’s (the Eastern European fighters like Loma and Usyk) that has become the dominant species in boxing. I think stating something like (what Haney said) could be very dangerous.”


WBN has reached out to Malignaggi for comment. It’s believed that Sky Sports in the UK, who also employ the ex-world champion as an analyst, are considering their options.

One thing that isn’t in doubt is the love from the fans. Many took to social media as they couldn’t comprehend why Malignaggi was fired.

Just a fraction of the comments are below:

“I remember when he made these comments. They didn’t strike me as the least bit controversial. Reading them again they didn’t strike me as the least bit controversial.”

“Madness. The amount of people I have seen on here slating him. Another example of current society being oversensitive. Wanting severe punishment. Didn’t say anything bad IMO.”

“What part of what he said warrants being removed from Showtime?”

“Absolutely ridiculous. He didn’t say anything wrong at all. I’m glad to see @SkySportsBoxing have kept him as a commentator. Showtime should be ashamed of themselves.”

“Wow, that is a dumb excuse.”

It’s uncertain where Malignaggi goes from here. Judging by his loyal fanbase, there will be plenty of takers if he decided to kickstart an exclusive podcast in the future.

Phil Jay is Editor of WBN. An Auxiliary member of the Boxing Writers Association of America. Follow on Twitter @PhilDJay