Like any good drama, the Mayweather vs McGregor spectacle has its fair share of side plots. The most interesting (or at least the most talked about) is the feud between McGregor and two-weight world champion Paulie Malignaggi.
Malignaggi joined the McGregor camp to help the “Notorious” prepare for his upcoming bout against Floyd Mayweather, but he left the camp enraged after a photograph of him seemingly being knocked down by McGregor emerged online.
Claiming he was pushed to the ground rather than knocked down, Malignaggi demanded that the sparring tapes be released and started trashing McGregor and his team. UFC boss Dana White called him out on his bluff and released two snippets of sparring footage, the first of Malignaggi eating a heavy straight left and the other of the supposed knock down.
Once again, Malignaggi hit back at McGregor and White, claiming he had dominated the 12-round sparring session and that the two videos do not accurately depict what took place. He recently told the MMA Hour: “the bad blood is there so let’s fight.”
Could this fight actually get made? It seems far-fetched but so did Mayweather vs McGregor. Here are some prop bets to ponder.
McGregor vs. Malignaggi Odds
Odds a fight between Mayweather and Malignaggi is scheduled by year-end 2018: 5/1
If McGregor doesn’t get absolutely annihilated by Floyd Mayweather on August 26th (a huge “if”), then it makes sense for him to remain in the boxing world for a little while longer. The money he makes at the UFC is peanuts compared to the wild west of professional boxing, and right now he’s the biggest draw in combat sports.
Even if he loses to Mayweather but puts up a decent fight, many will consider that a victory for the boxing newcomer. Maybe we’ll see McGregor seek another enormous payday from the world of boxing.
Odds the full sparring video is released by year-end 2018: 2/1
Dana White claims the 12-round sparring session was a “one-way beating” in favor of McGregor and he’s willing to release the entire footage to prove it. However, the sparring tape won’t emerge until after August 26th in order to not reveal anything to Mayweather.
From what we’ve seen already though, McGregor got the better of Malignaggi on at least two occasions. And if the rest of the footage is much of the same, then he’s probably chomping at the bit to release it.
Odds Mayweather vs. McGregor 2 is scheduled for 2018: 7/1
As ludicrous as it sounds, a rematch is a real possibility for both fighters. Again, if the bout isn’t too one-sided then people may want to see the two biggest names in combat sports touch gloves again. Mayweather is adamant on retiring after he reaches 50-0, but if Mayweather vs McGregor breaks the all-time pay-per-view record, then the lure of a rematch may be too much for “Money” Mayweather.
McGregor would probably welcome part two as well. It would be by far the most lucrative option available to him.