Malignaggi has been sparring with the Irishman to help him prepare for the bout on August 26 and he is impressed by what he has seen.
He told ESPN: “I think the intensity Conor’s reaching is starting to show in the hard work he’s put into camp.
“I think he’s getting better and better. I really felt improvements from two weeks ago to now. I do see a guy who is implementing more and more of what they want to do in their game plan.”
But despite his complimentary words, McGregor unsettled Malignaggi by making him spar for 12 rounds shortly after a long-haul flight in front of a UFC crowd.
The American, who was world champion at junior welterweight and welterweight, added: “A lot of violence.
“I went in there to prove a point. I didn’t like the fact I had to fly across the country on Monday, and they have me scheduled for 12 [rounds] on Tuesday. I thought it was a little bit of a set-up.