Paulie Malignaggi’s first Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship fight has been officially announced.
The former boxing world champion will take on former UFC fighter Artem Lobov on June 22 from the Florida State Fairgrounds Entertainment Hall in Tampa, Florida in the main event of BFKC 6. The fight was formally announced at a press conference in New York that continued the feud between the two fighters.
During the press conference, both men nearly had a confrontation that went physical and required security to separate the two. What followed was an expletive-filled rant by Malignaggi headed towards Lobov. Soon afterwards, Malignaggi and Lobov answered questions from the media that saw more insults being hurled towards one another.
Malignaggi, who retired from boxing following a knockout loss to Sam Eggington back in 2017, signed with BKFC back in March. Malignaggi is a two-division world champion, having held the IBF junior welterweight title from 2007 to 2008 and then the WBA welterweight title from 2012 to 2013. Sporting a 36-8 pro boxing record, Malignaggi has faced the likes of Miguel Cotto, Amir Khan, Danny Garcia, Shawn Porter, Adrien Broner and Ricky Hatton among others throughout his career.
Lobov has fought professionally in MMA from 2010 to 2018, spending the last few years competing in the UFC. Lobov advanced all the way to The Ultimate Fighter 22 finals in 2015, losing to Ryan Hall. Since then, Lobov fought six more times inside the octagon, sporting a 2-4 record. After being released from UFC, Lobov signed with BKFC and made his debut for the promotion back in April when he defeated Jason Knight in the main event.
Also announced for the card is a fight between former UFC veteran Chris Leben taking on former Bellator middleweight title challenger Brennan Ward as well as the finals of the BKFC lightweight title tournament between Reggie Barnett and Johnny Bedford.