Anthony Mundine says he’ll prove he’s the most explosive Australian athlete ever. And Danny Green just wants to smash him.
The Australian pugilists may be past their boxing primes ahead of their bitter bout on Friday night in Adelaide – Green is 43, Mundine 41.
But they can still trash talk.
“I believe I’m the most flamboyant, charismatic, diverse, explosive athlete there has ever been in this country – ever,” Mundine said at a joint media conference on Wednesday.
” … You’re going to see an extraordinary athlete and, by God’s will, greatness in boxing.”
Mundine pledged to again school Green and repeat his victory from their only other bout in 2006.
“I told you all, man, back in 2006, man: I’m going to teach this boy 1,2,3 the a, b, c’s of boxing. And that’s what I’m going to do again,” he said.
The pair taunted each other throughout the 25-minute press call, with Green saying his animosity towards Mundine stretched back to 2001.
“After a fight, Choc called me a bum,” Green said.
Mundine: “Did I really call you a bum?”
Green: “Yeah, 100 per cent.”
Mundine: “Then you must be a bum.”
Some verbal theatrics appeared rehearsed, like when Green apologised for being late as he had been drug tested – it set up his, pardon the pun, punchline.
“I just hope they test for LSD because you’re tripping, boy,” he told Mundine.
Green labelled Mundine’s support crew “the peanut gallery”; called them “knobs” and “pinheads”.
He dismissed as irrelevant discussion about the fight’s catchweight of 83 kilograms, which favours the taller, heavier Green.
“We both wouldn’t have signed the contract if we both didn’t agree to the weight because it was fair,” he said
Mundine confirmed he’d ignore the pre-fight Australian national anthem because it’s “blatanty racist”.
“I ain’t coming out until it’s played,” he said.
Green: “Leave the anthem shit alone.”
Yet beneath the overt showmanship, there were traces of the serious undertones to a bout which closes two esteemed boxing careers.
Green: “The fight had to take place. He needed the fight. I needed the fight.”
Mundine: “We both need this fight as far as clarity, man.”
Mundine conceded in 2006, both boxers were “pretty much in our prime”; complemented Green as a “fierce competitor” and a “great fighter”; and detailed his battles to overcome elbow and hip injuries.
And Green finally boiled it all down.
“We are going to give our all and we are going to smash each other … we are prize fighters, we are pugilists, we are boxers.
“And that is what we are here to do. Nothing else.
“I have said all I want to say. Lets go out there and smash and see who is the best.”