Former two division world champion Paulie Malignaggi has fired back at two of his recent critics, MMA stars Ben Askren and Chael Sonnen.
Both Askren and Sonnen were critical of Malignaggi’s recent performance against UFC veteran Artem Lobov in a bare knuckle fight. Their clash was featured as the main event of the BKFC 6 pay-per-view.
Malignaggi, who was inactive from any form of fighting since 2017, entered the bout as a favorite – but ended up losing a five round unanimous decision.
After that loss, Malignaggi said he was going retire for good and had no plans to take part in any further bare knuckle bouts.
Sonnen and Askren felt Malignaggi’s performance brought evidence that boxers may not be as skilled in stand-up fighting as many make them out to be.
Malignaggi felt the need to fire back at both of them.
“Literally, if you listen to any of their analysis, you got Chael Sonnen talking about how boxing is not a sport, this guy just walked in and beat me. Chael, cuz, you not that old, bro. Go and do it. Go and do it, bro. Go and do it. Go fight any light heavyweight in the world,” Malignaggi told Counter Punch Boxing (via MMA News).
“Ben Askren, the same sh*t. I did it with one hand. I did it with half a hand. And I did it bare knuckle. Go and do it. Go put on gloves if it’s not that hard.
“Because you know we make more than you guys. You know we get paid more than you. You know that already. So come in. Come and do it, cuz! It’s that easy? Go make your money!”
Malignaggi is no stranger to feuding with MMA fighters. He’s had a verbal feud with UFC superstar Conor McGregor for well over two years.