Bare-Knuckles Paulie Goes Nutso

By Paul Magno on May 22, 2019
Bare-Knuckles Paulie Goes Nutso
“Next month, I'm gonna put this guy in a f**king coma.” (James Chance/Getty Images)

Lobov has a simple strategy when it comes to Malignaggi. “Grab him by the back of his f**king head and shove my fist down his throat…”

Two-time former world champ and current Showtime color commentator Paulie Malignaggi is either pushing really, really hard to sell his June 22 pay-per-view BKFC (Bare Knuckles Fighting Championships) debut against UFC veteran Artem Lobov or he’s having a mental breakdown in public.

“Next month, I’m gonna put this guy in a f**king coma because that’s what he deserves,” Malignaggi hurled from the podium at Monday’s press conference to hype the PPV show from Tampa, Florida. “He’s a piece of sh*t. He’s a piece of sh*t. Okay? You’re a piece of sh*t, bro. You and that whole crew where you came from. You’re a piece of sh*t and I’m gonna treat you like the dirtbag that you are. After I beat the f**k out of you, I’m gonna spit on you…I might take out my d**k and piss on you…I’m gonna take out my d**k… piss in the mouth that has no teeth left…in that toothless mouth of yours…f**king p*ssy. You got five weeks to live, mother**ker. Get ready.”


Oh yeah, he also swung the mic at Lobov before this…and then spat in his face during the post-conference stare down. A couple weeks prior, he “b”tch-slapped” Lobov in a gym scuffle.

The 32-year-old Lobov is a friend and training partner of Conor McGregor, who brought Malignaggi in for sparring to help prepare for his 2017 bout with Floyd Mayweather. Video snippets of McGregor having the upper hand in sparring were broadcast by Team McGregor and provoked the rage of the Brooklyn native, who claimed that he schooled McGregor in sparring and that the video clips paint the wrong picture of what actually happened.

The 38-year-old former welterweight and junior welterweight titlist has been fuming over that sparring footage ever since.

In March, Malignaggi signed with BKFC after having been retired from boxing for two full years and immediately set his sights on a bout with Lobov, who had been signed by the company one month earlier after being released by the UFC. It’s clear that the bout with Lobov was meant to tap into the existing animosity to sell the boxer’s bare knuckles debut and, surely from Paulie’s end, keep pushing for a big money bout with McGregor, himself.

For those unfamiliar with BKFC, this is the organization where President David Feldman stormed the ring after a tactical chess match of a fight on a Biloxi, Mississippi card and declared, “We’re here for action…we demand action from the fighters. We didn’t get action in that last fight, because Rusty Crowder wanted to run. Therefore, he’s giving half his purse to Reggie Barnett. Make some noise Biloxi. This is how we do it at Bare Knuckle. You fight, or you don’t get paid.”

Feldman later retracted his declaration, presumably when someone reminded him of the lawsuits ready to be filed and the possible loss of license from the Mississippi State Athletic Commission. But, one gets the drift—the BKFC ain’t exactly Wimbledon-classy.

And what about Malignaggi-Lobov, the fight?

The Russia-born Dublin, Ireland resident has a simple strategy when it comes to “The Magic Man.”

“Grab him by the back of his f**king head and shove my fist down his throat.”

“The Russian Hammer” is all-around dismissive of Malignaggi, blasting his preparedness for “real” fighting and even casting aspersions on his 16-year, 44-fight professional boxing career.

“Anytime he fought anyone halfway decent, he got his ass whupped,” Lobov said, pointing out that, in his estimation, Malignaggi is 1-8 in “real” fights against actual world class opposition.

As for the reason behind Malignaggi launching himself into a new phase of a combat career that was thought to be over two years ago, Lobov, again, pulls no punches.

“He’s broke, he needs money. That is the fact. If he wasn’t stuck for a few quid, he wouldn’t be doing commentary week after week after week. He is broke.”

Malignaggi, meanwhile, attributes his glove-less boxing rebirth against Lobov to nobler causes.

“Lobov and the mixed martial arts community have really disrespected my sport in a lot of ways; boxing, saying that we fight with pads on and it’s not a real fighting sport and whatnot, but we have all the deaths,” Malignaggi recently told

“When your piece of sh*t community and your piece of sh*t people talk about ‘we fight with pads on and now you’re in a dangerous sport like MMA,’ when nothing of the sort happens to you, which is why you have a circus of a fanbase because it’s like wrestling. At the end of the day, no matter what happens to you guys, [tapping] assures you you’re gonna see that guy next week. [Tapping] assures you you’re gonna see that guy in a few months. In boxing, you don’t have those assurances so there’s a respect level even to the trash talk that we have and it’s being surpassed now, it’s being overcome with this garbage that we have from this other community.

“For me, I think the way you solve it, seeing one of their own in a coma, seeing one of their own in a f**king coffin, then you say, ‘You know what, this sh*t is not a joke.’

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  1. darnaiiii'h 02:30pm, 05/28/2019

    A real race to the bottom.  What garbage.

  2. Pete The Sneak 04:20am, 05/24/2019

    Could Paulie really be broke as Lobov indicates? I mean I know he makes quite a few ‘quid’ commenting on Showtime. Why would Paulie risk getting a dental makeover and other more serious injuries in a bare knuckle fight? Also, if memory serves me correctly, Paulie was not much of an ‘engager’ when he boxed with Gloves, so do you really think he’s going to go toe to toe with Lobov with no gloves? Look for BKFC President David Feldman to perhaps storm the ring again yelling about lack of action after another ‘tactical chess match’ from Paulie…Peace.

  3. Koolz 10:51am, 05/23/2019

    The Magic Man is absolutely Crazy!

    No Gloves Boxing and if you get hit it damages your teeth and face.
    Is Paulie going to use Boxing technique of moving to stay out of the way then counter?  Or is he going to jab then move out of the way the whole fight?

    If he stands with Lobov who hits very hard, granted he has no talent at boxing, but man he can allow himself to be beat up and still throw punches to damage the other fighter.
    Paulie the better boxer but can he avoid Lobov the whole fight?
    ok Paulie is crazy!

  4. Hangin' Down At Kinos 09:10am, 05/23/2019

    This could all be as fake as the “Weapons Of Mass Destruction” in Iraq, Assad gassing his own people, or the latest Iran propaganda. I know I haven’t heard of this fight, but my curiosity caused me to search Youtube clips after reading Magno’s article. NO WAY would I pay to watch this crap, (assuming that it is PPV) but this WWE script would sell tickets to the so called “educated” troglodytes who can’t figure out that 2 + 2 does not equal 5. These pressers for upcoming “fights” whether they be bare knuckle boxing, MMA or boxing are becoming so ridiculous.

  5. Lucas McCain 08:48am, 05/23/2019

    Anger over video someone else’s video clips?  It sounds like Paulie selling what he has left any way he can.  After Wilder’s Festival of Trash Talking, anything is fair game, however gamey the odor.

  6. The Tache 07:38am, 05/23/2019

    I think Malinaggi might be in for a shock. Lobov is by no means a world class boxer but he is one tough S.O.B. Not a BKF fan but saw some highlights of his last fight and it was brutal. He literally knocked the other guy’s teeth out, sent about 3-4 of them flying through the air. He might not catch Malinaggi often, but I think he will at some point. Added to which, Malinaggi is old, doesn’t have the legs he once did and couldn’t punch at his peak. I wouldn’t be surprised if all this trash talk is because he is worried deep down. Sudden injury before the fight a possibility.

  7. Hangin' Down At Kinos 06:33am, 05/23/2019

    Paulie looks more Middle Eastern than Italian and he needs someone to tell him how to dress. Spittin’ on another man is a classless act and he deserves a beatin’ for that one. Never heard of the guy that Paulie is fighting and I don’t watch bare knuckle fighting but I hope the guy trows Paulie a beatin’. IF this crap is just bare knuckle boxing than the other guy doesn’t stand a chance. IF grappling, kicks, elbows and knees aren’t allowed than it IS NOT BARE KNUCKLE FIGHTING, it is just bare knuckle boxing.