The man Paul Gallen is set to fight on Wednesday night has made a mockery of the rugby league legend’s press conference walk-out, describing it as “staged” and “cringey”.
The build-up to the heavyweight showdown between Gallen and Melbourne’s Kris Terzievski took a dramatic turn when the former Sharks captain stormed out of a press conference on Monday.
A furious Gallen claimed that Terzievski hadn’t made enough of an effort to promote the fight, in which they’ll square off for Australian and Australasian heavyweight titles in Newcastle.
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As the duo traded barbs on 2GB’s Wide World of Sports radio following Gallen’s press conference walk-out, Terzievski posed a question for the 40-year-old.
“How long did you practice that walk-off today?” Terzievski said.
“Didn’t practice it once, mate, to be honest with you.”
Terzievski proceeded to make a joke of Gallen’s move.
“That looked staged, Gal mate,” Terzievski said.
“That looked cringey, bro.”
Gallen doubled down.
“Nah, mate. If you promoted your sport a little bit better I wouldn’t have to have done it.”
Gallen storms out of pressure
Moments after Terzievski got off air, Gallen – who on Monday co-hosted the show with Mark Levy – labeled his opponent “the world’s nicest bloke”.
And that shone through as Terzievski responded to Gallen’s claim that he hadn’t contributed enough to the promotion of the fight.
“I’m going to learn from the best, aren’t I, mate? You’ve done a great job so far. I’m going to try to take some notes,” Terzievski said.
“This is my first time doing this rodeo. So, I appreciate the lesson and I’ll take it into my next fight.”
But Terzievski didn’t stop short of questioning Gallen’s commitment to promotion.
“I want to clarify something. He was actually supposed to come to Melbourne, from what I was told initially. His wires got crossed. Apparently he couldn’t come down to Melbourne. We were supposed to promote it,” Terzievski said.
“Obviously with the pandemic we haven’t had much going on. Everyone knows Gal in New South Wales and Queensland, so that was the original plan. All of a sudden they (promoter No Limit Boxing) said, ‘sorry mate, spanner in the works, you’ve got to come to Sydney’.
Gallen blasts ‘soft’ opponent
“So, there was a bit of confusion there. He’s clinging onto that for dear life.
“I feel like he does promote himself. From what I know about Gal a lot of people aren’t the biggest fans. As soon as he’s fighting people are going to want to tune in to either watch him get beat or beat me up. He’s carrying a lot of the weight.”
Gallen shot down Terzievski’s claim that he had avoided the apparent Melbourne media opportunity.
“First I’ve heard of that,” Gallen said.
“I had no idea about Melbourne – that’s for sure – and the fight’s in Newcastle, so I’m not sure why we’d go to Melbourne. But no – I did not know about that.”
Gallen’s professional boxing record is 12-1-1 and Terzievski’s is 10-1-1.
They will headline a card featuring Australian Harry Garside, who won a bronze medal in the Tokyo Olympics, and Nikita Tszyu – the younger brother of Australian boxing megastar Tim Tszyu.
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