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The Bare Knuckle Defeat of Malignaggi Should End the MMA vs Boxing Debate For Good



The Bare Knuckle Defeat of Malignaggi Should End the MMA vs Boxing Debate For Good

The bare knuckle defeat of Paulie Malignaggi is good reason enough that we should end the MMA vs Boxing debate for good


When Paulie Malignaggi stepped into the BKFC ring on June 22, Saturday night, to take on Artem Lobov (the former UFC fighter), he carried a lot of boxing experience with him. However, one more thing he carried, which apparently resulted in his downfall, was his arrogance. Malignaggi seemingly came across as thinking that his skills and experience would be good enough to knock out the UFC fighter, despite the fact that he wasn’t competing in boxing actually.

A great multitude of UFC bettors had their money on Lobov simply because of the way he was constantly disrespected by Malignaggi. This was a Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship (BKFC) which is amongst the many 2. Malignaggi’s dislike for Lobov was so apparent throughout that it became embarrassing at one point. 

Everyone is aware how Malignaggi had a fallout with Conor McGregor when the latter had knocked him down during a sparring session couple of years ago. The fact that Lobov had been pally with McGregor and was seeking his help also didn’t go down well with the boxing champion.

The press conference incident where he smashed a microphone over Lobov’s head and earlier when he had spit on Lobov during a heated face off were both disgraceful incidents to say the least. Quite obviously, promoters weren’t complaining as all these histrionics helped build up the tension even more and got many more people interested in the fight. Simply put, if Malignaggi had done it intentionally, his mission was more than accomplished.

How it went in the ring

However, the mission that really mattered unfolded in the ring on Saturday night and Malignaggi was found wanting. He had earlier predicted that it would be a cakewalk for him, but eventually Lobov won the fight with 48-47 times three.


There’s still a lot of snobbery between MMA and boxing

One thing which really came to the fore during the build-up to this fight and till the winner was declared is the snobbery which is still found between MMA and boxing. Malignaggi had called MMA fans stupid and had mocked them for giving Lobov any chance at all. 

It cannot be denied that there is a prominent section in the boxing fraternity that has always looked down upon mixed martial arts. However, if we look closely, the fact is that these people simply don’t understand what MMA is all about, and don’t appreciate the kind of qualities and skills required to be good at it. It certainly seemed like the case with Malignaggi, and even though Lobov didn’t knock out the American, he certainly did enough to shove all the pre-fight mockery by the Magic Man, down his throat.

What the result means for MMA and Boxing

The result of this fight didn’t prove that MMA was better compared to boxing, or vice versa, because if the fight was under Queensberry Rules, Paulie Malignaggi would have been a clear winner. On the other hand, if it was fought strictly under the MMA rules, there would have been a lopsided result favouring Lobov. However, this fight was neither MMA nor boxing. The result simply proved that the Russian had better skills to outdo Malignaggi under the bareknuckle rules of BKFC. 

On the whole, it’s high time that both sides accept and appreciate their differences, and develop some respect for the quality of each other’s sport.