Having Trained Paulie, Roach Admits Surprise At Conor’s Success In Sparring

Legendary boxing coach Freddie Roach was surprised with how well UFC Lightweight Champion Conor McGregor looked during his sparring session with former boxing champion Paulie Malignaggi.

Roach has trained with Malignaggi in the past and was surprised Malignaggi would even be a sparring partner for McGregor.

“Paulie is a great kid but did he really need the money to be a sparring partner. It’s very odd,” Roach said in an interview with Fight Hype. “One guy is active, one guy is not, and Paulie looked like he got beat up a little bit in the tapes that they’ve shown, but we don’t know if the tapes show the other way.”

Roach then went on to talk about McGregor’s success in the sparring footage that was released last week.

“With what’s out there, he looked pretty good. He has a strong left hand, and he does have power,” Roach said. “I was very surprised.

“Maybe he’ll be able to do something. He did fight a legitimate fighter, a world-class fighter, a two-time champion at one time.”

McGregor will fight Floyd “Money” Mayweather in his professional boxing debut on Aug. 26 in Las Vegas.