Paulie Malignaggi was game as always, but a perfect body shot from Sam Eggington ended his night and potentially his professional boxing career, knocked out in the eighth round.
Malignaggi (36-8, 7 KO) had a three-fight winning streak coming into the bout, but was taking something of a mild step back up in competition here. He fought fairly well, overall, taking advantage of some of the flaws of Eggington (20-3, 12 KO), but he just couldn’t hold off the bigger, younger man for an entire 12 rounds.
“It was one of those body shots where it gets you perfectly. I was totally fine, but for about 15 seconds I just couldn’t breathe. It gets you perfectly. It’s a shame, because I wanted so badly to go out with a win in this arena,” Malignaggi told Sky Sports after the fight.
“But Sam makes it -- if there’s a silver lining, I could see him improving during the fight. So if I’m gonna get beat, this is par for the course. I’m the kind of opponent that makes him better. If I can’t get the win, I’m glad I at least played my role in his progression.”
Reportedly, Malignaggi was ahead on two of three judges’ scorecards at the time of stoppage.
He also told Sky Sports during the post-fight interview that he “probably (is) done” fighting, and that he plans to make an official announcement this coming week.