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Justin Bieber says he was 'just playing' when he challenged Tom Cruise to an MMA fight

Justin Bieber, left, at a practice round prior

Justin Bieber, left, at a practice round prior to the 2017 PGA Championship in Charlotte, N.C., and Tom Cruise at the 'Mission: Impossible - Fallout' U.S. premiere on July 22, 2018, in Washington, D.C.  Photo Credit: Composite: Getty Images / Stuart Franklin, left; Getty Images for Paramount Pictures / Michael Loccisano

Pop star Justin Bieber says he was just kidding Sunday when he tweet-dared actor Tom Cruise to fight him in a mixed martial arts match.

"I was just playing," the 25-year-old told paparazzi in a video TMZ.com posted Wednesday, outside what the website said was the building housing his wife Hailey Baldwin Bieber's fashion-line office.

"I don't know him," Bieber informed the photographers, as he stood inside a black luxury van in preparation to leave. "The story is that I   [came across]   an interview with him and it was on my mind. I don't know why I thought about" wanting to challenge the "Mission: Impossible" film-franchise star.

"It was just a random tweet," he added, smiling. "I do that stuff sometimes. … I'm pretty sure Tom would, I think he would — he'd probably whoop my (expletive) in a fight."

The singer allowed that, "I'd have to get into good shape. … I'm really skinny. … I think he'd probably be out of my weight class. … Because he's big, he's got that dad strength," Bieber said of the 56-year-old actor.  "He's a dad, right?"

The minute-and-a-half video ends with Bieber giving a peace sign and saying, "Love you, Tom."

The singer had generated much social-media mocking over his tweet reading, "I wanna challenge Tom Cruise to fight in the octagon," referring to the UFC Octagon, the eight-sided, fenced-in ring used for Ultimate Fighting Championship bouts. "Tom if you dont take this fight your [sic]   scared and you will never live it down. Who is willing to put on the fight?" he asked, tagging UFC president and CEO Dana White, who did not respond.

Bieber had followed-up on Monday, tweeting someone's clip of a bare-knuckles boxing scene in the 1992 Tom Cruise period movie "Far and Away," with Bieber's face superimposed over that of the brawler Cruise's character knocks out.

Cruise famously trains for and does many of his own highly physical stunts in the "Mission: Impossible" movies. He did not respond to Bieber's challenge.

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