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Many people that have followed the career of Danny Green over the years give him little chance of defeating boxing legend, Roy Jones Jnr. There are some of the view that Green is a one dimensional fighter who has the habit of continually coming forward, and standing in front of fighters.
They reckon that he will easily be picked off by Roy Jones Jnr as a result, as was the case in Green’s clash with Anthony “The Man” Mundine.
But for those that say this reason will be his downfall, I think for Danny Green its the very habit that can prove the doubters wrong and see him retain his IBO Cruiserweight title.
So why would a gameplan work against Roy Jones, when the same gameplan exposed Green as a fighter against Anthony Mundine, whose technique is modelled on that of Jones Jnr?
The answer is simple.
Ricky Hatton is often talked about as being a “one dimensional fighter” and this was shown in Manny Pacquaios demolition of him in 2 rounds earlier this year. Styles make fights and certain styles will not work well with certain fighters, as Hatton’s style played expertly into the hands of Pacquaio. And whilst Hatton’s style saw him demolished by the Phillipino great, it also saw him end the career of Kostya Tsyu.
Hatton’s gameplan agaisnt Tzsyu was simple: outwork him, punch first, and go forward.
Knowing that Tzsyu, like Jones to Green, has better handspeed and is an all round better boxer, Hatton’s execution of such a plan was to the letter and resulted in Tzsyu quitting on his stool for the first time in his career, and never fighting again.
Green has to follow the Hatton example.
He has to pressure Jones from the outset, rough up the American and use his superior size to his advantage. He needs to cut off the ring and not allow Jones to fight on the outside.
Like Hatton did so famously, Green needs to “punch first” and continually come forward, not allowing Jones a moment of respite.
Green is never going to outbox Roy Jones, but I believe Green is more inclined to dig in and “go to war” when the going gets tough.
There is still a question mark on whether Roy Jones is truly “back”.
I’ll admit he looked like the old Roy Jones in his demolition of Jeff Lacy in his last bout, but I liken it to the talk surrounding Manny Pacquiao’s destruction of Oscar De La Hoya: was Manny that good or was Oscar just that bad! Lacy offered nothing and was no competition to Jones.
In Jones’s previous fight against Joe Calzaghe I felt Jones had lost the hunger and perhaps money was what was driving the great man. Even after putting Calzaghe down in the 1st, after Calzaghe started coming back into the fight through the middle rounds and making it a contest, Jones simply folded and threw nothing back as if he was not prepared to “go to war” and dig deep to pull the fight back into his grasp. He simply folded into a heap and granted Calzaghe an easy win by decision.
I have never seen Danny Green so hungry in his career than for this fight.
Those that follow him know of his heart and determination, and although he may not be the best technical boxer, it is this heart and determination that has him as one of the best boxers Australia has produced.
The weight will also prove a factor.
Jones has never fought at Cruiserweight and in his previous foray into Heavyweight, where he won the WBA Heavyweight title from John Ruiz, Jones looked sluggish and it was only for his handspeed and footspeed that won him the fight. But that handspeed and footspeed that made him a legend all those years ago is slowly dwindling with age.
Green on the other hand looks like a changed man since moving from super-middleweight to Light-Heavyweight and Cruiserweight. He looks more fluid in the ring and packs a heavier punch, he looks ripped and physically imposing, as apposed to the gaunt, and lethargic super middleweight version.
For Green to retain his IBO Cruiserweight title, he will have to take Jones to war. He must bash him for 12 rounds and run him ragged.
There’s no denying Green will have to almost have the perfect night, but in saying that, Jones is entering the ring on foreign soil for the 1st time. Jones has never been the man the crowd wants to see get their head ripped off.
Many big fights struggle to live up to the hype. And given the unpredictability of boxing, making grand statements like this can ensure you risk the chance at eating a healthy dose of humble pie, but if all goes to plan, we should see Danny Green smiling in centre ring when its all said and done.
And 20,000 Aussie boxing fans – which will include yours truly – will be doing the same.