Gallen will be ‘called out’ for $2m megafight
Paul Gallen is on track for a $1 million-plus payday by taking on Australian heavyweight champion Justis Huni in the wake of his stunning knockout of Lucas Browne.
Speaking to News Corp, Huni's promoter Dean Lonergan this morning confirmed the Australian champion's proposed showdown against Browne, slated for July, has been scrapped following 'Big Daddy's' woeful first-round capitulation last night.
Instead, the lucrative financial door has swung open for Gallen, with the Huni camp declaring "bring it on" as the parties prepare to ramp-up talks on a $2 million fight that has put the former NRL star within tantalising touching distance of the Australian heavyweight title.
Huni, one of Australia's hottest boxing prospects, will hold a press conference later today where he will call out Gallen for a bout before he heads to Tokyo in August to chase gold as an amateur at the Olympics.
Gallen (11-0-1, 6KO) has shocked the Australian boxing world with his ruthless disposal of the 117kg Browne and Lonergan said he would pocket more than $1 million by taking on Huni (3-0, 3KO).
"I am totally stunned by Paul Gallen, he has balls the size of watermelons," Lonergan said.
"I have sent Paul a text message of congratulations. What he did was truly unbelievable.
"We had plans for Lucas Browne to fight Justis but in the wake of his performance last night, that won't be happening.
"I spoke to Justis' dad Rocky last night and he said if Gallen wants to do something, bring it on.
"We are finalising plans for Justis' next fight against Christian Tsoye on May 26 and then Justis and his camp want one more fight before the Olympics and Paul Gallen comes into the frame for that.
"Paul Gallen can get the biggest payday of his career by fighting Justis.
"I believe he can earn more than $1 million from fighting Justis so we will now look at making that happen."
Gallen's adviser Peter Mitrevski reached out to Lonergan last month proposing a showdown with Huni at Suncorp Stadium before Christmas this year.
But after Gallen sliced-and-diced Browne in 115 seconds of boxing brutality, the heavyweight bout with Huni is set to be expedited as Brisbane-born 'JPH' chases some stiffer competition after three easy wins to launch his professional career.
Despite Gallen's heroic performance, Lonergan insists the 22-year-old Huni will destroy the former NSW Origin skipper.
"Paul is without doubt such a courageous athlete but there is simply no way he would beat a fighter of Justis' quality," he said.
"I will give him credit, what he has done in the past 12 months is outstanding and he can make millions out of boxing in the next few years.
"But he won't win a round against Huni.
"It would be like Justis trying to be competitive in Gallen's world in the NRL.
"Gallen has great courage, so if Justis is keen, which he seems to be, then we'll get the parties together and talk.
"I don't think Suncorp Stadium is a realistic option. Financially, it's an expensive exercise, but Gallen and Justis can make more than $1 million by fighting out of a smaller venue so we'll begin talks to make it happen.
"Unfortunately, Lucas has zero value after his performance last night and I'm sure he is bitterly disappointed at what he produced against Gallen.
"Unfortunately, he now has no currency for us in terms of presenting a test for Justis."
Lonergan dismissed suggestions Gallen could one day fight for a world title.
"I think it's a stretch too far to suggest he will win a world title," he said.
"Paul is five-foot eleven, he has made a magnificent splash on the Australian scene but he would struggle to get a world-title shot overseas against world-class fighters.
"But there is no doubt he has profile in Australia and there is some upside in him going forward fighting Justis."
Originally published as Gallen will be 'called out' for $2m megafight