Danny Green was seeing double. His legs were jelly. All he could hear was a numb whirring.
After 11 years of waiting, just 30 seconds into his rematch against arch rival Anthony Mundine and Green was gone. Concussed.
Green had been caught in the back of the head, while not looking, by a cheap shot from Mundine as referee Frank Garza tried to break the fighters.
Garza wanted to call Friday night’s fight off, then and there.
And Green’s boxing legacy came down to one single question from the ref: what is the ringside doctor’s name?
“I’m looking at him (the ref) going ‘ahhh ahhhh ahhhh’,” Green said.
“He said: ‘That’s it. I’m calling it off’.
“I went noooo, no, no – it’s Doctor O’Neill. I just sprung into action. Bang.”
Green went on to win a fight that was as tight as a tourniquet.
One judge couldn’t split the boxers, scoring it 94-94. Another scored it slightly for Green, 96-94. And even Green can’t believe the third judge scored 98-90 in his favour.
“I didn’t win by eight points. No chance,” Green said.
“It was a close fight.”
Mundine has yet to speak publicly about a result which confounded some pundits.
But he did re-issue a tweet from high-profile lawyer Adam Houda: “History books will forever tell the story of how @Anthony_Mundine was robbed!!!”
Green himself holds no animosity towards Mundine – not for the late blow, not for anything.
For while their rivalry has been sour at times, Mundine always had Green’s respect.
“I don’t think Choc intentionally meant to do it like that. But in the heat of the moment, that is the game,” he said.
“Choc proved he’s a warrior … an incredible competitor. He’s a superior athlete,” he said.
“He’s a class act, man. I have always liked watching him fight.
“I can tell you now, he’s got no shit in him. He’s a goer, because I hit him with a couple of good shots and he came back hard.
“He’s digging hard and really trying to put me away. And as a fighter, you become endeared to the bloke.
“His heart just wants to jump out of its chest because it’s pulsating but he’s digging deep.
“And you get respect for a fighter and I have always respected Choc. We don’t see eye to eye, but I gained a lot more respect for Choc even though I won the fight.”