Paulie Malignaggi has exposed Conor McGregor’s biggest weakness — he “whimpers” when he is hit hard on the body.
Former two-weight world champion Malignaggi fought well-known fighters like Miguel Cotto and Ricky Hatton during a 16-year career.
The 36-year-old retired in March but was drafted into the McGregor camp to help the UFC champion prepare for his fight against Floyd Mayweather on August 26.
Malignaggi and McGregor’s relationship lasted barely two days.
Malignaggi quit the camp last week because he felt “exploited” by McGregor. He felt McGregor was more interested in publishing out-of-context photographs — that appeared to show Malignaggi getting beaten-up — than he was in learning from the veteran American.
As such, Malignaggi blasted McGregor for acting like “a d***head.”
Traditionally, there’s an unspoken code in boxing that whatever happens in training camp, stays in training camp. If tactics or weaknesses were revealed then an opponent could benefit from that inside knowledge.
Malignaggi has broken that golden rule by exposing a potential strategy and a clear weakness.
Talking about McGregor’s game on podcast the MMA Hour, he said the UFC star gets hurt when his body is targeted. “The body shots started to affect him more and more. I could hear him whimper.”
Malignaggi added that McGregor finishes poorly. “From six rounds on he became very hittable. My work was more consistent. My counter punching was sharper. My jab was sharper,” he said.
McGregor must improve these parts of his game in time for August 26, otherwise Mayweather could inflict a crushing loss.
It wasn’t all bad news, however. Malignaggi did highlight a strength in McGregor.
He said the fighter “came out sharper, with more of a purpose” during the opening rounds of one of their practice sessions. “He even landed a couple of good shots.”
Starting fast and hard could be an indication of what McGregor plans to do against Mayweather at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, later this month.
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