Gallen’s $2m Suncorp Stadium mega-fight carrot
Paul Gallen is on track for a mega $2 million bout against Australian heavyweight champion Justis Huni if the former NRL star-turned-boxer can upset Lucas Browne in the fight of his life on Wednesday night.
The immediate focus for Gallen (10-0-1, 5KO) is continuing his unbeaten pugilistic career against former WBA world champion Browne (29-2, 25KO), who arrives in Wollongong armed with a right hand that can smash granite.
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But if Gallen can conjure a stunning boilover of Browne, it will be the catalyst for the former NSW Origin skipper to chase a $1 million-plus payday by taking on Australia's hottest heavyweight prospect Huni.
The 109kg Huni is due to fight Browne in July before he chases a gold medal as an amateur at the Tokyo Olympics, but plans are afoot for Gallen to fight for the Australian title in a Christmas blockbuster at Suncorp Stadium.
Gallen's promoter Matt Rose confirmed the 39-year-old is on course for the biggest payday of his fight career if he can shock 'Big Daddy' Browne at the Wollongong Entertainment Centre.
"We'll be looking at a $2 million fight for Paul Gallen and Justis Huni when Paul beats Lucas Browne," Rose said.
"Huni has never fought for $500,000, so I'm happy to offer that to him and Paul will take the rest ($1.5 million).
"We'll be looking at a showdown in Queensland later this year when Paul beats Lucas Browne.
"Suncorp Stadium is a great venue, as we saw with Jeff Horn (in his defeat of Manny Pacquiao in 2017), so a stadium fight against Huni has great appeal.
"Thousands of Queenslanders would love to come to Suncorp and watch their brightest prospect in boxing (Huni) bash Paul Gallen.
"Huni is talking up his ability but he hasn't got the punching power of Lucas Browne.
"Gallen isn't worried about Huni's punching power that's for sure, but he is wary of Browne's punching power and if he can handle Browne, Huni won't scare him."
Just turned 22, Huni advanced to 3-0 by mauling Jack Maris in his third consecutive stoppage last Saturday week and is rated one of the most exciting heavyweights in Australian boxing history.
Huni's promoter Dean Lonergan is keen to make the fight happen, but scoffed at suggestions Gallen would claim a major share of a multimillion-dollar purse.
"Lucas Browne will knock Gallen out so Matt Rose should book an ambulance to take poor Paul to hospital before he makes a booking for Suncorp Stadium," Lonergan said.
"If by some miracle Paul gets through this fight, then Matt Rose can come to me to work out a fight with Justis Huni.
"It would be fantastic to see them fight in Queensland, but if the Gallen camp thinks we are going to accept $500,000 while Gallen gets $1.5 million, he is kidding himself.
"The reality is for the fight to go ahead, if Matt Rose wants to put up $2 million, Justis will want an even $1 million share.
"Interestingly, Paul's adviser Peter Mitrevski has contacted me saying he wants a re-match if Gallen loses to Browne, so clearly they aren't very confident of beating Lucas.
"It wouldn't be a fight between Huni and Gallen, it would be a cold-blooded destruction.
"Justis is a world-class heavyweight ... Paul would get the shock of his life fighting someone of his ability."
Originally published as Gallen's $2m Suncorp Stadium mega-fight carrot